Mitochondrial genome damage and mitochondrial transfer after cellular injury.
Dr Melanie McConnell
No more applications being accepted
Self-Funded PhD Students Only
Movement of mitochondria between mammalian cells has recently been observed in our group (Tan et al, Cell Metabolism 2015 doi:10.1016/j.cmet.2014.12.003) and others. A PhD project is available to explore the role of mitochondrial DNA damage in inter-cellular mitochondrial transfer. The hypothesis is that inter-cellular mitochondrial transfer between cells in vivo is a normal physiological phenomenon that occurs in response to mtDNA damage to ensure the genetic integrity essential for optimal bioenergetics and metabolic function.
The overall aim is to use bone marrow transplantation to explore mitochondrial genome transfer between donor blood-forming cells and recipient cells with mtDNA damage. We will determine the prevalence of mtDNA transfer between cells in response to mtDNA-damaging agents, using different cell markers together with mitochondrial DNA polymorphisms.
Experience in molecular and cellular biology are required, and small animal handling would be an advantage.
This project does not come with funding, and students are encouraged to bring their own funding. The right student will be supported in a Victoria University of Wellington Doctoral Scholarship application.