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Understanding the relationships between immune cells and stem cells for bone regenerative medicine

Study level

PhD

Master of Philosophy

Honours

Vacation research experience scheme

Faculty/Lead unit

Topic status

In progress.

Supervisors

Professor Yin Xiao
Position
Professor
Division / Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
Dr Yinghong Zhou
Position
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Division / Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty

Overview

The skeletal system in human body undergoes a constant life-long process of adaptation, which consists of osteoblast-driven formation and osteoclast-driven resorption. The regenerative power of endogenous cells is required for bone development, repair and regeneration. This is controlled by various cell types that secrete a wide spectrum cytokines that temporally and spatially dictate stem cell commitment and modulate the bone microenvironment. Increasing evidence has shown that among the various types of cells that mediate bone formation and regeneration, macrophages play a critical role, providing signals to stem cells within the local and systemic environments.

Research activities

  • Create bone defects in small animals and harvest samples at different time points for immunohistological assessment of mesenchymal stem cells and macrophages.
  • Cellular and molecular approaches including primary cell culture, cellular metabolism assay, immunofluorescene labelling of cells, RT-qPCR and Western blotting will be applied to study the interactions between mesenchymal stem cells and macrophages.

Outcomes

  • Demonstrate the coupling of mesenchymal stem cells and macrophages during bone healing process.
  • Reveal the molecular mechanisms that drive the dynamic coupling of mesenchymal stem cells and macrophages.

Skills and experience

  • Have a background in Biological Sciences.
  • Ideally have experience with cell culture, in vitro assays and small animal handling.

Keywords

Contact

Contact the supervisor for more information.