Neuroimaging and neuropathological biomarkers of social dysfunction after paediatric brain injury

Research Opportunity
PhD, Honours
Project Status
Medicine and Radiology
Royal Melbourne Hospital
Supervisor Email Number Webpage
Dr Bridgette Semple 90356379 Personal web page

Project Details

Social behaviour problems are a common and debilitating consequence of traumatic brain injury in children, and a key contributor to poor quality of life for survivors. However, mechanisms underlying the emergence or persistence of social deficits after injury remain poorly understood, particularly in the context of ongoing brain maturation throughout childhood. Damage to the social brain network, a distributed circuit of frontal temporo-limbic brain regions, is hypothesised to underlie problems with social behaviours and communication that emerge after brain injury in both humans and animal models.

Using a clinically-relevant mouse model of traumatic injury to the paediatric brain, this project will therefore evaluate whether disruption of white matter integrity in the social brain network is integral to the manifestation of social deficits after early life brain injury. Using advanced neuroimaging modalities and post-mortem immunohistochemical staining, we will evaluate the developmental trajectory of key white matter tracts in mice as they age after a paediatric brain injury compared to uninjured controls, aiming to identify in vivo neuroimaging biomarkers predictive of long-term social behaviour deficits.

Faculty Research Themes


School Research Themes

Neuroscience & Psychiatry

Research Opportunities

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

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Key Contact

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


Medicine and Radiology

Research Group / Unit / Centre

Semple Laboratory: Developmental Neurotrauma

Research Node

Royal Melbourne Hospital

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