• Associate Professor Darryl Eyles, QBI, The University of Queensland
  • Professor Jürgen Götz, QBI, The University of Queensland
  • Professor Tianzi Jiang, QBI, The University of Queensland
  • Dr Fatima Nasrallah, QBI, The University of Queensland
  • Professor Linda J. Richards, QBI, The University of Queensland
  • Professor Pankaj Sah, QBI, The University of Queensland
  • Professor Elizabeth Coulson, QBI, School of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, The University of Queensland 
  • Dr Patricio Opazo, QBI, University of Queensland
  • Professor Feng Liu, School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, The University of Queensland
  • Professor Markus Barth, CAI, The University of Queensland

View all publications 

Project 1: Modulating learning and memory by targeting brain connectome

 

How memory is formed is one of the most intriguing questions in neuroscience. Recent studies suggest that memory is formed and stored in distributed brain connectivity. Our previous work showed that learning can induce long-lasting change in the spontaneous brain network detected by resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Furthermore, silencing specific network hub identified can impair memory formation. This project aims to further identify connectivity signature of memory formation so as to develop novel methods for improving memory. We will use advanced MRI, electrophysiology, optogenetics and calcium recording to pinpoint and verify functional connectivity changes in memory formation in animal models. Neuromodulation will be developed to target the connection to assess its behavioural effects on learning and memory. The outcomes will advance our understanding of memory and technologies for improving cognitive function.

 

Project 2:  Understand interplay between waste clearance, metabolism and brain connectivity in Alzheimer’s dementia

 

Neurodegenerative diseases, such as dementia, are irreversible and generally incurable and hence early detection is essential so that interventions can be applied to slow down its progression. Abnormal brain networks that colocalized with early pathologies, such as amyloid plaque or tau tangle, in Alzheimer’s dementia (AD) have been identified. However, why specific brain networks are vulnerable remains unclear. We recently discovered a neural pathway could affect a major waste clearance pathway – the glymphatic system – in the brain, leading to the pathology of AD. We aim to further understand the relationship between brain network, metabolic waste and glymphatic function using human brain imaging data and test hypothesis in animal models. This translational study will provide new ways for improving brain function by facilitating waste clearance.

How to apply