MR Timothy Ryan

MR Timothy Ryan

Positions

Publications

Selected publications

Awards

Education and training

  • PhD, University of Melbourne 2010
  • B.Sc(Hons), University of Melbourne 2006

Supervision

Available for supervision

  • Y

Supervision Statement

  • Alzheimer's disease is a debilitating slow neurodegenerative disease that is the leading cause of dementia, and is the third leading cause of disability and death in Australia's elderly population, behind cancer and heart disease. We have 3 project areas for 2014: Understanding the natural biology of Abeta peptides in human brain. The plaques are comprised of the Abeta peptide and while are the defining feature of the disease, are thought to be a relatively inert end-point to a toxic process that forms soluble oligomers of Abeta. These soluble species are thought to be the "toxic principle" of the disease. We believe that this is too much a simplification of the biology of Abeta, and we have an over arching aim of understanding the role of Abeta, the distribution of Abeta in the milieu of the brain tissue and how the Abeta peptide is involved in the disease. We primarily focus on studying facets of Abeta biology in human brain tissue, with a view to understanding the behavior of the peptide in vivo. This project involves investigating the Abeta distribution in the cellular milieu of human brain tissue, investigating protease levels and determining changes in other proteins related to the disease. Techniques commonly applied include brain tissue homogenization, chromatography, HPLC, mass spectrometry, 2D and 1 D SDS PAGE and western blotting. Biomarker discovery for Neurodegenerative disease. Currently, the main diagnostic for AD is post-mortem, which is inadequate in determining appropriate treatment for elderly dementia patients. The second best method for diagnosing the form of dementia is the use of radiolabeled Pittsburgh compound B positron emission tomography (PIB-PET) imaging of the formation of amyloid plaques in human brain tissue. This has its own set of limitations, the primary issue being that it is very expensive to conduct at around $3000 per test, the second being that the radioisotopes used for the test are very shot-lived. The imaging