A postgraduate research opportunity at the University of Otago.
- Close date
- Sunday, 27 February 2022
- Academic background
- Sciences, Health Sciences
- Host campus
- Pathology and Biomedical Science (Christchurch)
- Dr Christoph Goebl
The aim of this project is to investigate the conversion of the tumour suppressor protein p16 into amyloid and determine its presence in cancer.
We recently discovered that the tumour suppressor p16 can form amyloid fibrils (PMID: 31539802). This is an aggregated protein state that has so far mainly been associated with neurodegenerative diseases. In the amyloid state, p16 is unable to fulfil its native function and might promote tumour formation. p16 is among the most mutated proteins in cancer and the discovery of this novel state might open avenues to novel future treatment options.
The proposed project is embedded in a larger research effort with international collaborators in the US, Canada, Germany and Australia.
Preferred student expertise
Students from any field can apply, enthusiasm is more important than a specific background.
Depending on the interest of the student, they will focus on either a) the detailed mechanism of amyloid formation using diagnostic dyes with recombinant proteins and algorithm development to fit the acquired data with molecular models, or b) the detection of amyloid fibrils from breast and cervical cancer cell lines using antibody-based methods, ideally with protein-state specific conformational nanobodies that we are currently developing.
This is one of a number of projects on offer for the 2022 intake of BBiomedSc(Hons) at the University of Otago, Christchurch campus.
ContactDr Christoph Goebl