Epigenetic control of host-microbe interactions

Research Opportunity
Honours, Master of Biomedical Science
Number of Honour Places Available
1
Number of Master Places Available
1
Department
Melbourne Dental School
Location
Royal Dental Hospital Melbourne,Bio21 Molecular Science and Biotechnology Institute
Primary Supervisor Email Number Webpage
A/Prof Glen Scholz glenms@unimelb.edu.au
Co-supervisor Email Number Webpage
Dr Jacqui Heath

Summary In this project, you will use cell culture systems to investigate how different bacteria affect the immune functions of epithelial cells by producing metabolic products that disrupt epigenetic regulatory mechanisms.

Project Details

Epigenetic mechanisms play imporant roles in regulating the functions of immune cells. It has recently emerged that specific metabolites produced by bacteria can effect these epigenetic regulatory mechanims, and thus may influence suspectibility to infection. Epithelial cells covering the external surfaces of the body (e.g. skin & oral cavity) also have important immune functions; for example, producing anti-microbial proteins and inflammatory cytokines. We have established that the immune functions of oral epithelial cells are regulated by epigenetic mechanisms, and modified by bacterial metabolites. In this project, you will use cell culture systems to investigate how different bacteria affect the immune functions of epithelial cells by producing metabolic products. This project will provide important new insight into how changes in the types of bacteria colonising surface epithelia might promote disease by disrupting epigenetic regulatory mechanisms. The project will provide students with opportunities to develop skills in mammalian & bacterial cell culture, manipulating gene expression, cell signalling & transcriptional regulation, cytokine analysis, immunofluorescence confocal microscopy, critical thinking & time management, scientific writing & oral communication.



Faculty Research Themes

Infection and Immunology

School Research Themes

Oral Infection and Immunity



Research Opportunities

Honours, 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.

Department

Melbourne Dental School

Research Node

Royal Dental Hospital Melbourne,Bio21 Molecular Science and Biotechnology Institute

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