Elucidating the cellular mechanisms of human disease in vitro

Research Opportunity
PhD students, Honours students, Master of Biomedical Science
Number of Honour Places Available
Number of Master Places Available
Primary Supervisor Email Number Webpage
A/Prof Peter Crouch pjcrouch@unimelb.edu.au Personal web page
Co-supervisor Email Number Webpage
Dr Jeff Liddell

Summary The focus of our research is to elucidate the biochemical basis of human disease. We study degenerative conditions of the central nervous system as well as a diverse range of cancers, and our overarching aim is to generate the information needed to help develop and test new therapeutic options and to improve patient outcomes through enhanced disease detection and characterisation. Recent significant achievements include bench-to-clinic translation of a new drug for motor neurone disease and a first of its kind method for imaging cancer.To achieve these outcomes, we utilise a broad range of experimental paradigms, ranging from cells grown in culture through to direct examination of human tissue. Our analytical approaches span fundamental techniques (enzyme activity assays, gene expression analysis, histology and western blotting) through to highly sophisticated techniques such as quantitative in situ elemental imaging .

Project Details

Determining the biochemical changes that occur in human disease-affected tissue is an essential part of our research, but analysing human tissue is rarely amenable to the level of experimental manipulation that is needed to elucidate the cellular mechanistic pathways that cause the disease.  In our laboratory we therefore complement our human tissue analyses with cell culture experiments in which specific phenomena can be controlled and examined in detail.  We grow cells in the laboratory then we expose them to the conditions needed to induce a response comparable to what we have identified in the human disease.  By analysing the treated cells, we are able to systematically map the sequence of events that lead to disease.  This work is essential for identifying and validating therapeutic targets.

Research Opportunities

PhD students, Honours students, Master of Biomedical Science
Students who are interested in joining this project will need to consider their elegibility as well as other requirements before contacting the supervisor of this research

Graduate Research application

Honours application

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact a supervisor.

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