Towards a biological geriatric assessment

Research Opportunity
PhD, Masters by Research, Honours, Master of Biomedical Science
Project Status
Medicine and Radiology
Royal Melbourne Hospital
Supervisor Email Number Webpage
Professor Andrea Maier + 61383872137 Personal web page
Dr Camilla Tuttle

Project Details

In current geriatric practice, patients are assessed by use of the comprehensive geriatric assessment (CGA) evaluating the functional, mental and social state of the aged patient using predominantly subjective, not well defined tools. The consequence is that CGAs are not comparable and that the causal mechanisms of the geriatric condition remain unidentified. The aim is to refine the CGA and define the biological basis of geriatric conditions to eventually introduce a standardized biological geriatric assessment (BGA) being predictive for relevant outcomes and sensitive and specific for change over time. The BGA will be based on the nine molecular hallmarks of aging currently recognized.


This PhD project will investigate the role of the molecular hallmarks of ageing in age-related disease pathology in different populations (healthy to diseased). In the first two years, the PhD candidate will investigate the association of hallmarks of ageing with disease pathology combining molecular and epidemiological techniques, followed by validation of (parts of the) BGA in diseased populations.

Research Environment:

@AgeMelbourne Research Group, led by Professor Andrea Maier, conducts innovative, translational and multi-disciplinary research in Gerontology and Biogerontology. The group's mission is to prolong the healthy lifespan of an individual by the prevention of age-related diseases. Ageing is the major risk factor of age-related diseases resulting in multimorbidity of the majority of the population aged 60 years and over. Understanding the basis of the human ageing process and its influence on age-related diseases is the starting point for establishing targeted interventions. @AgeMelbourne is currently conducting four large, longitudinal, studies examining the clinical and biological phenotypes of geriatric populations in inpatient and outpatient settings. All @AgeMelbourne studies demonstrate a strong translational component that is, improving diagnostics and therapies for age-related diseases based on a solid methodological and biological understanding. The @AgeMelbourne Research Group includes an internationally-recognised and dedicated team of academic research staff and students with a diverse background of clinical research skills and knowledge, making it an exciting and inspiring group to work with.

Selection Criteria:

  • Undergraduate education in science, statistics, biostatistics or epidemiology
  • First Class Honours in a discipline relevant to the Research Scope
  • Competitive academic track record
  • Strong interest in academic research
  • Capacity to work independently as a part of a research group Desirable Criteria
  • Basic laboratory experience particular in regards to processing specimens and cell culturing.
  • Statistical Experience


@Age Melbourne Postgraduate Research Scholarship is equivalent to APA rate (AU$ 26,288 per annum). A waiver of the tuition fees may be considered for a competitive international candidate.

School Research Themes


Research Opportunities

PhD, Masters by Research, Honours, Master of Biomedical Science
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

View application process

Key Contact

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


Medicine and Radiology

Research Group / Unit / Centre


Research Node

Royal Melbourne Hospital

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