The Role of Innate Phagocytosis in the Pathogenesis and Treatment of Alzheimer's Disease

Research Opportunity
PhD, Masters by Research
Number of Master Places Available
Medicine and Radiology
Florey Institute of Neuroscience & Mental Health
Primary Supervisor Email Number Webpage
Dr. Ben Gu +613 9035 6317
Co-supervisor Email Number Webpage
Prof. James Wiley +61 3 8344 6386 Personal web page

Summary This project is to investigate the functional link between innate phagocytosis of peripheral monocyte and brain Aβ amyloid burden, in order to develop a combination treatment targeting both innate phagocytosis and chronic inflammation for Aβ clearance in AD .

Project Details

Accumulation of Aβ-amyloid plaque in brain is the most significant pathological characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Emerging genetic and animal evidences suggest that besides chronic inflammation, impaired removal of aggregated or fibrillar Aβ-peptides due to defects in innate phagocytosis is also a major contributor to the risk of sporadic AD. We found that both proinflammation and innate phagocytosis could be mediated by the P2X7 receptor in the presence or absence of its ligand extracellular ATP, respectively. We propose that innate phagocytosis is the key element to the development of sporadic AD. Researching innate phagocytosis and clearance of Aβ could therefore lead to better understanding of AD pathogenesis, and may enable us to develop a novel therapeutic strategy for treatment of prodromal AD.

Faculty Research Themes


School Research Themes

Neuroscience & Psychiatry, Ageing

Research Opportunities

PhD, Masters by Research
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.


Medicine and Radiology

Research Node

Florey Institute of Neuroscience & Mental Health

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