Using metabolomic mass spectrometry imaging to better characterise endometriosis
- Research Opportunity
- PhD, Masters by Research, Honours
- Obstetrics and Gynaecology
- Royal Women’s Hospital
|Dr Sarah Holdsworth-Carsonemail@example.com||0383453728||Personal web page|
|Dr Berin Boughtonfirstname.lastname@example.org||Personal web page|
Summary This project aims to spatially image sections of endometriotic lesions to determine what kinds of metabolites are synthesised at the site of disease. This work will have advantageous outcomes for better understanding endometriosis disease mechanisms and for the identification of disease biomarkers.
Endometriosis is a heterogenous disease where tissue that normally lines the uterus forms lesions within the pelvic cavity. Approximately 1 in 10 women have the condition. Women endure years of delayed diagnosis, misdiagnosis, repeated surgeries and a roller-coaster of trial and error for pharmacological control of symptoms because there are no reliable non-invasive diagnostic tests for endometriosis.
Pain is the predominant feature of endometriosis. Women exhibit a variety of unspecified combinations of pain symptoms; menstrual pain (dysmenorrhea) occurs in >90% of women and dyspareunia and non-menstrual chronic pelvic pain occur in 40-60% of women with endometriosis-associated pain. However, pelvic pain is not clinically diagnostic of endometriosis. Invasive surgical visualisation of lesions by laparoscopy remains the standard for endometriosis diagnosis. However, women with endometriosis endure a diagnostic delay of 4-11 years from symptom onset to diagnosis, due to normalisation of symptoms, common or ambiguous symptoms, and inadequate diagnostic tools.
To identify non-invasive diagnostic biomarkers, more attention should be paid to the diagnostic feature of endometriosis - lesions. Without lesions, there would be no disease and no associated reduction in the quality of life. Using mass spectrometry imaging on clinically characterised samples, the spatial metabolomic profiles of lesions will be explored for lesion-specific biomarkers. No one has applied mass spectrometry imaging to endometriotic lesions; this innovative approach will interrogate the site of disease at levels never explored before in endometriosis.
Faculty Research Themes
School Research Themes
PhD, Masters by Research, Honours
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
For further information about this research, please contact a supervisor.
Research NodeRoyal Women’s Hospital
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