Collaboration at the heart of EMCRA Awards

Three projects from across the School fostering inter-department collaborations have been awarded EMCRA seed funding.

Please join us in congratulating the winners of the 2022 SBS EMCRA Collaborative Award - Alice Brandli (DAP) & Daniel Fernandex-Ruiz (DMI), Justin Hardee (DAP) & Calum Walsh (DMI), and Jeffrey Liddell (DBP) & Katherine Ganjo (DMI). Each project will received $20,000 in seed funding.

Dr Alice Brandli (Postdoc, Fletcher Lab, DAP) and
Dr Daniel Fernandez-Ruiz (Postdoc, Heath Lab, DMI)

Project: Adaptive immune cell mediated protection in the eye

This project aims to to understand the role of T-cells in AMD-derived neovascularisation. It brings together Alice’s expertise in age-related macular degeneration (AMD) with Daniel, an expert in peripheral T cell responses.

“We will study these cells in a pathology model, by using flow cytometry and in vivo imaging. The role of T cells is relatively unexplored within the eye and they may be the missing link in understanding neovascularisation pathology and a new treatment for advanced AMD,” the researchers said.

Dr Justin Hardee (Postdoc, Centre for Muscle Research, DAP) and
Dr Calum Walsh (DMI)

Project: Biological roles of dystrophin and utrophin in dystrophic muscle adaptations to exercise

In this newly established collaboration Justin and Calum aim to improve fundamental knowledge of skeletal muscle adaptation to increased muscle activity (eg exercise), with relevance to Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) and related muscle diseases.

The project will combine the expertise of both researchers in muscle biology, multi-omic technologies, and bioinformaticsto reveal novel regulators of muscle signal transduction and transcriptional activity through unbiased systems level analyses.

Dr Jeff Liddell (Postdoc, Crouch Lab, DBP) and
Dr Kate Ganio (Postdoc, McDevitt Lab, DMI)

Project: Interrogating neurodegenerative microglial ferroptosis using spatial elemental analysis

Both Jeff and Kate have a shared research interest in the role of elemental micronutrients in health. Bringing together this interest with their expertise in neurobiology and inorganic mass spectrometry, the project will look at how changes in the chemical environment within the cellular components of the central nervous system lead to neurodegeneration.

About the EMCRA Collaborative Award

The EMCRA Award was established to promote collaborations at the postdoctoral level in the School of Biomedical Sciences, and to help postdocs gain research independence ahead of larger funding applications to the ARC and NHMRC.

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