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Establishing the effect of skeletal muscle TDP-43 accumulation on muscle function, regeneration and exercise capacity

This PhD project aims to understand the role of skeletal muscle TDP-43 accumulation in the development of neuromuscular diseases, muscle regeneration and adaptation to exercise.

Project supervisor(s)

Professor Aaron Russell and Dr Paul Della Gatta

The TAR-DNA binding protein (TDP-43) is primarily localised to the nucleus and mitochondria of numerous tissues where it plays multiple roles in RNA metabolism and translation. In skeletal muscle, chronic accumulation of cytoplasmic TDP-43 in observed in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and inclusion body myositis (IBM), while acute cytoplasmic accumulation appears necessary for skeletal muscle regeneration.

We have developed a novel mouse model where TDP-43 can be induced and removed specifically in the cytoplasm of skeletal muscle. This novel mouse model will allow us to understand the role of skeletal muscle TDP-43 accumulation in the development of neuromuscular diseases, muscle regeneration and adaptation to exercise.

Prerequisites

Applicants must hold an undergraduate degree with first class honours or Masters by Research in the Biomedical or related science field. Evidence of publishing in an international peer reviewed journal is an advantage.

Interested students must meet Deakin University‚Äôs PhD entry requirements and be eligible to apply for an Australian Post Graduate Award or equivalent. The supervision team will work with suitably qualified applicants to apply for scholarship funding.

Applicants should have an interest in laboratory science, a willingness to be challenged and to work as part of a team.

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