Study level

  • PhD
  • Master of Philosophy
  • Honours

Faculty/School

Topic status

We're looking for students to study this topic.

Research centre

Supervisors

Professor Kirsten Spann
Position
Professor
Division / Faculty
Faculty of Health
Adjunct Associate Professor Antiopi Varelias
Position
Adjunct Associate Professor
Division / Faculty
Faculty of Health

Overview

Allogeneic stem cell transplantation (alloSCT) is considered the gold standard procedure for the treatment of blood cancers. Globally, over 9000 patients per year undergo this high-risk, life-saving therapy. However, major complications limit the therapeutic potential of this treatment which include graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) and infections due to the severe immunosuppression in these patients. Respiratory syncytial viral (RSV) infection is frequent in these patients, is often fatal and clearly a significant clinical problem. Thus, there is a pressing need for new treatment approaches to improve transplant outcome for these patients. We have established a novel, robust, preclinical model of RSV infection after alloSCT using Pneumonia Virus of Mice (PVM), the murine relative of RSV, to enable mechanistic pathways to be investigated.

Approaches/skills and techniques

This is dependent on the study level of the student but will involve multi-parameter flow cytometry, RT-qPCR and immunoassays of samples collected from PVM infected mice after alloSCT. The student will gain practical laboratory experience and further his/her knowledge in the transplantation field. The student will have the opportunity to observe and learn other techniques/skills in addition to those required for this project and will work in a stimulating and supportive research environment. Please contact the QIMRB supervisor for more details.

Outcomes

Aim: To determine the immune cells and cytokines that are dysregulated after alloSCT in the context of a PVM infection.

Required skills and experience

This project is open to applications from students with an interest and background in immunology, particularly students interested in pursuing an Honours and/or PhD in medical research. Excellent written and oral communication skills are required.

Keywords

Contact

antiopi.varelias@qimrberghofer.edu.au

3362 0322

https://www.qimrberghofer.edu.au/lab/transplant-immunology