Alzheimer’s diseases modelling with human cerebral organoids

Research Opportunity
PhD, Masters by Research, Honours, Master of Biomedical Science
Number of Honour Places Available
Surgery, Ophthalmology, Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital
Group Leader Email Number Webpage
Associate Professor Alice Pebay Personal web page

Project Details

Advances in stem cell technology now allow researchers to generate induced pluripotent stem cells from adult tissue (for instance, from skin biopsies or blood samples from patients, or those at risk of developing a disease). These represent a powerful disease modelling tool, to provide a “disease in a dish”. Until recently, these cells could only be grown as monolayers but it is now possible to prepare three dimensional cultures from stem cells that show some level of organisation corresponding to that found in human organs, also known as ‘organoids’. This has been done for liver, lung and kidney, and it is now possible to obtain ‘organised’ cortical tissue from the differentiation of human induced pluripotent stem cells. These recent advances offer powerful models to study human brain development and disease, including Alzheimer’s disease because current research is largely based around post-mortem human brains and animal models that do not fully recapitulate the disease.

This project aims to develop a three-dimensional cerebral organoid derived from human pluripotent stem cells to study Alzheimer’s diseases. It will involve the combination of novel technologies such as characterization of pluripotent stem cells, generation of cerebral organoids and gene editing using CRISPR/Cas9 systems to understand the role of specific genes in Alzheimer’s disease.

This project is conducted at the University of Melbourne/ Centre for Eye Research Australia, Neuroregeneration Unit.

Faculty Research Themes


School Research Themes

Neuroscience & Psychiatry, Ageing

Research Opportunities

PhD, Masters by Research, 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.



Research Node

Surgery, Ophthalmology, Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital

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