ANU Research School of Engineering Associate Professor David Nisbet, has won $630,000 in the latest National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) funding round to investigate ways of advancing the treatment of neurological disorders.
The project will focus on engineering functional biomaterials for direct application to areas of the brain affected by trauma and disease. The study will see these nano-structures deliver both chemical and physical support to the surrounding cells to encourage regeneration and repair.
Dr Nisbet who is currently leading a research team in this field, expects this extension of his work to significantly advance the treatment of neurological disorders.
“We are grateful for this NHMRC research funding that will allow me to modify our existing nanomaterials to reprogram inflammatory brain cells into functioning neurons,” Dr Nisbet said.
“If successful this will be useful for stroke patients as we will have a means to improve the survival, maintenance and growth of existing neurons to encourage repair.”
The project, led by Dr Nisbet and The Australian National University involves a collaboration with researchers from the Joint Colleges of Science and Medical Research (ANU), RMIT University, University of Melbourne, the University of Western Australia, and with Professor Gong Chen from Pennsylvania State University.
“The synergies between each of the investigators new and existing technologies, and their interdisciplinary combinations is what makes this study so exciting.” Dr Nisbet said.
“This project will make a significant advances in treatment through the merging of parallel technologies with the possibility of addressing a raft of other clinical disorders that are currently unmet.”