Roles of macrophages subpopulations in tumour microenvironment in gastric cancer

Research Opportunity
PhD, Masters by Research, Honours, Master of Biomedical Science
Number of Honour Places Available
1
Number of Master Places Available
1
Department
Medicine and Radiology
Location
Royal Melbourne Hospital
Primary Supervisor Email Number Webpage
Dr Adrian Achuthan aaa@unimelb.edu.au 83443298 Personal web page
Co-supervisor Email Number Webpage
Professor Alex Boussioutas alexb@unimelb.edu.au 8344 6252

Summary In this project you will explore the roles of proinflammatory (e.g. IFNgamma) and anti‐inflammatory cytokines (e.g. IL‐10) driving the heterogeneity of macrophage populations. Our previous genomic experiments have provided a number of exciting candidate genes that may be involved in the effector functions of these macrophage subpopulations.

Project Details

Project description: Gastric cancer (GC) is the fourth most common cancer globally and 7th in incidence in Australia. It has a poor survival rate which can be attributed to the advanced stage at diagnosis in most patients. The molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the development of GC are not well described. Traditionally cancer research involved studying the cancer cell itself. More recently, there has been growing interest in studying the normal cells and molecules which surround the cancer cell. This tumour microenvironment consists of a variety of immune cells. Tumour‐associated macrophages (TAMs) are one of the most abundant immune components in GC. Our recent data demonstrated that the heterogeneity of macrophages within the tumour is present at both micro‐ and macro‐levels due to the gradient change of different macrophage markers, namely IRF8, CD68, CD163 and CD206. This study highlights the need for investigating the roles of macrophage subpopulations in a tissue setting, to identify potential therapeutic candidates and to understand the immune landscape of GC. In this project you will explore the roles of proinflammatory (e.g. IFNgamma) and anti‐inflammatory cytokines (e.g. IL‐10) driving the heterogeneity of macrophage populations. Our previous genomic experiments have provided a number of exciting candidate genes that may be involved in the effector functions of these macrophage subpopulations. You will be validating their expression and regulation in control and GC patient samples.

Techniques: You will acquire a wide‐range of skills in cell biology (primary human monocyte/macrophage culture, ELISA assays and flow cytometry), and biochemistry and molecular biology (Western blotting, Real‐Time PCR and siRNA‐mediated gene knock‐down).


Faculty Research Themes

Cancer

School Research Themes

Cancer in Medicine



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.

Department

Medicine and Radiology

Research Node

Royal Melbourne Hospital

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