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Enhancing wellbeing of youth from culturally diverse and refugee backgrounds

Australia has a multicultural population, with approximately 30% of the population from diverse backgrounds. We will propose a program of research encompassing the development of assessment processes and also interventions, addressing the diverse needs of this population, Proposed research will build upon work already undertaken by the team in collaboration with Education Queensland including Milpera State School. Methodologies to date have been broadly based, including both quantitative and qualitative approaches. These have included the examination of psychometric properties of scales …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Psychology and Counselling
Research centre(s)

Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies

Quantifying oxygen tolerance in a climate-relevant ecosystem using machine learning

Aims and methodologyPermafrost thaw induced by climate change is predicted to make up to 174 Pg of near-surface carbon (less than 3m below the surface) available for microbial degradation by 2100. Despite having major implications for human health, prediction of the magnitude of carbon loss as carbon dioxide (CO2) or methane (CH4) is hampered by our limited knowledge of microbial metabolism of organic matter in these environments. Genome-centric meta-omic analysis of microbial communities provides the necessary information to examine how …

Study level
Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Biomedical Sciences
Research centre(s)

Centre for Microbiome Research

Post-translational modification of proteins in cancer

The Protein Ablation Cancer Therapeutics (PACT) laboratory are interested in understanding how post-translational modifications contribute to the tumorigenic functions of proteins in cancer cells. We hypothesise that particular post-translational modifications are required for the cancer-associated function of a protein and that prevention of these would be a useful approach to treating cancer.The aim of this project is to select a candidate protein from our database of potential targets, confirm the protein is modified, identify the key modified lysine in the …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Biomedical Sciences

Improving human health through the microbiome

Every person harbours a unique collection of microorganisms - the majority of which reside in the gastrointestinal tract - that influences nearly every aspect of human health. As such, the gut microbiome is emerging as a potential tool for the diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of diseases.However, microbiome studies yield vast amounts of data, and the complexity of the microbiome makes it difficult to decipher interactions between microorganisms, host cells and environmental factors.

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Biomedical Sciences
Research centre(s)

Centre for Microbiome Research

Proteogenomics of prostate cancer: discovering, characterising and targeting micro peptides encoded by non-coding part of the genome

Next generation RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) has allowed the identification of entire transcriptomes and has led to the unexpected realisation that a much higher than anticipated portion of the genome is transcribed (up to 85%). A large proportion of these transcripts lack a ‘long’ open reading frame (ORF) and have therefore been considered as long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs). LncRNAs play dynamic roles in transcriptional and translational regulation.Interestingly, in recent ground-breaking studies lncRNAs were discovered to contain short open reading frame sequences …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Biomedical Sciences

Biological and clinical impact of the association of germline variations in KLK3 (PSA) gene in prostate cancer

Prostate cancer is the most frequently occurring cancer (after skin cancers) in Australian males, and the second most common cause of cancer death. While the 5-year survival rate for localised disease approaches 100%, extra-prostatic invasion results in a poorer prognosis. Kallikreins are serine proteases, which are part of an enzymatic cascade pathway activated in prostate cancer (Lawrence et al 2010). The most well-known member is prostate specific antigen (PSA) or the KLK3 protein, encoded by the Kallikrein 3 (KLK3) gene, …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Biomedical Sciences

Identification and characterisation of IRX4 isoforms as novel targets in prostate cancer

Prostate cancer (PCa) is the second leading cause of cancer-related death in Australian men. There is no cure for advanced prostate cancer patients who develop resistance to currently available treatments. Alternative splicing (AS) is tightly regulated to maintain genomic stability in humans (Liyanage et al 2019). Aberrant RNA splicing of cancer-causing genes has been reported as a major cause of treatment escape in prostate cancer patients. Iroquois-class homeodomain protein 4 (IRX4) is a TALE homeobox transcription factor which has been …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Biomedical Sciences

Exploring global viral diversity with conserved sequence tags

Viruses control much of the world indirectly through infection of microbial cells. Modern metagenomics provides the raw data to investigate their dynamics and patterns of co-occurrence with the microbial hosts, but extracting signal from these datasets at the large scale remains challenging. Marker-gene based approaches, such as SingleM, have shown great promise for microbial data, converting metagenomic datasets into community profiles by concentrating on reads which derive from conserved sections of prevalent genes.

Study level
PhD
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Biomedical Sciences
Research centre(s)

Centre for Microbiome Research

Estimating the evolutionary history of plasmids and viruses

In the case of cellular life - bacteria, archaea and eukaryotes - determining the 'tree of life' is a comparatively well-studied problem.This vertical evolutionary history can be estimated using concatenated gene phylogenies, where single copy marker genes are concatenated into a single multiple sequence alignment which is then used in a phylogenetic tree reconstruction algorithm.Viral genomes and plasmid sequences, meanwhile, are more challenging to fit into a phylogenetic framework.

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Biomedical Sciences
Research centre(s)

Centre for Microbiome Research

Characterising a DNA repair protein as an anti-cancer therapeutic target and diagnostic marker in brain cancer

Cancer is the single biggest clinical problem facing the world and will account for half of all global deaths by 2030. Even though there have been significant advances in immunotherapy, we are still unable to cure most cancers. New therapeutic targets, individualised to patient needs, must be identified and validated in order to improve cancer outcomes.Brain cancer causes more deaths in people under the age of 40 than any other cancer and more deaths in children than any other disease. …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Biomedical Sciences
Research centre(s)
Centre for Genomics and Personalised Health

Symbiosis in microbial ecosystems

Soil systems are fundamentally important to the health of our planet, but the complexity of soil microbial communities makes them particularly challenging to study. Soil systems are amongst the most diverse microbial ecosystems on Earth in terms of the number of microbial species (and strains) present within individual samples, and in the breadth of functions encoded. Beyond complexity measured by counting distinct community members, interactions between microbial species including symbiosis, parasitism or commensalism are widespread and yet barely studied.

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Biomedical Sciences
Research centre(s)

Centre for Microbiome Research

Use of interpreters in community pharmacy

All community pharmacies in Australia can register for the free Translation and Interpreter Service (TIS). TIS is a free tool that enables pharmacists to deliver equitable access to key services for people with limited or no English language proficiency. Pharmacies can access the TIS priority line to enable timely and quality access for all consumers. Despite having access to this service, a very small number of pharmacists use this free service.The aim of this study, which is part of a …

Study level
Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Clinical Sciences

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