The Hippo pathway and Yap1 in vascular growth control in development and disease

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
Prof Ben Hogan
Co-supervisor Email Number Webpage
Prof Andrew Cox

Summary The Hogan group investigates the development of lymphatic vasculature and the blood brain barrier, which play important roles in the metastatic spread of cancer and vascular disease. We use zebrafish and mice as model systems to study fundamental processes in the developing embryo. Current projects are focussed on signalling and transcriptional mechanisms that control lymphangiogenesis. We are also using large-scale genetic and genomic approaches to discover new genes essential for development of the blood brain barrier. In addition, we are interested in developing imaging tools to visualise key cell signalling events in real time in vascular development and disease models.

Project Details

Lymphatic vessels play roles in the drainage of tissue fluid, trafficking of immune cells and the metastatic spread of cancer. Inhibiting or enhancing the development of new lymphatic vessels has therapeutic potential in a host of diseases.  We recently described a role for Yap1 in lymphangiogenesis in the zebrafish embryo, in response to Vegfc/Vegfr3 signalling.  This work, and work from others, has confirmed that the Hippo pathway and Yap are central in vascular growth during development, yet how they control angiogenesis, lymphangiogenesis, vessel proliferation and vascular network patterning remains far from understood. This project will use molecular genetics, biochemical approaches and live imaging of cellular behaviours in zebrafish, mice and cultured human cell lines to understand the mechanistic control of vascular development by the Hippo pathway and Yap. The project will generate novel CRISPR mutants, new transgenic lines and may utilise single cell sequencing of developing vasculature.  We will also investigate metabolic control by the pathway in vascular growth and development. Finally, the project will have the opportunity to assess tumour vasculature and pathological settings.

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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