Friday 13 November 2020 12:34pm
Left to right: Drs Joon Kim, Conor Underwood, Elodie Desroziers, and Teodora Georgescu.
Gaining scientific independence is no easy feat. Therefore, the Brain Health Research Centre and the Centre for Neuroendocrinology has recently established the Early Career Accelerator Grants. These grants will provide financial support to postdoctoral and research fellows, allowing them to gather the preliminary data that could boost their chances of obtaining their own research funding.
We received many excellent applications and funded four outstanding candidates:
- Dr Joon Kim, mentored by Dr Karl Iremonger, will build a new device to dispense and monitor how much food mice consume. These devices will allow Joon to study the intersection between risk taking behaviour and basic needs, such as foraging for food.
- Dr Teodora Georgescu, mentored by Professor Dave Grattan, will be studying how the normal fever response is repressed in pregnancy. Specifically, Teodora will investigate the contribution of prolactin receptor-expressing neurons in the brainstem raphe nuclei.
- Dr Conor Underwood, mentored by Associate Professor Louise Parr-Brownlie, will study the impact of inflammation on Parkinson’s disease. Conor will develop a new rat model to study the interplay between Parkinson’s and inflammatory bowel disease, and whether reducing inflammation could be an effective therapy for Parkinson’s disease.
- Dr Elodie Desroziers, mentored by Professor Rebecca Campbell, will study sexual dysfunction in a preclinical mouse model of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). As this syndrome involves high levels of circulating androgens and sexual dysfunction, Elodie will test the effect of anti-androgen treatment on sexual behaviours in PCOS-like mice.
We look forward to following the work of these promising early career scientists!