Novel Anti-inflammatory Approaches for Currently Untreatable Diseases of the Preterm Baby: Human specimen analysis and animal Models of Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia and Necrotising Enterocolitis

Research area

 |  bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), necrotising enterocolitis (NEC)


 |  Paediatrics, preterm infants, inflammation, lung, gut, bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), necrotising enterocolitis (NEC), interleukin, histology, flow cytometry, immunohistochemistry


 |  Honours, Masters

Contact supervisors at any time

Professor Claudia Nold

Project description

The severe chronic lung disease bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) causes considerable suffering for premature infants and their families and contributes substantially to health care costs. Necrotising enterocolitis (NEC) is a disease of the premature gut that is poorly understood and carries a high mortality. No effective therapy is known for either devastating disease. In view of the importance of inflammation for BPD and NEC, we will assess how effectively innovative anti-inflammatory treatments protect against BPD and NEC. In newborn mice with a BPD-like lung disease, we will quantify if treatments protect against the development of lung pathology as reflected in biochemical and cellular markers of inflammation and loss of alveolarisation and vascularisation on day 3 and 28 of life. In a newborn mouse model of NEC, involving formula feeding and brief exposure to cold and hypoxia, we will assess the protective properties of immunotherapies by histology and flow cytometry and by analysis of selected biochemical markers. In human specimen we will assess the underlying mechanism of disease.

Direct clinical relevance: high

Hands-on learning opportunities: Various aspects of work with mice, workup of tissues for various downstream applications, flow cytometry, histology, immunohistochemistry, protein detection by ELISA.

Established collaboration with the Monash Health department of Pediatric Surgery to collect human specimen including blood, intestinal and stool samples.