Supervisors: Professor Andrew Whittaker and Dr Changkui Fu

The development of MRI imaging agents has been central to the rise of MRI as a leading medical diagnostic tool. An MRI imaging agent is a molecular adjunct which enables enhanced image definition and reduced imaging times, as well as mapping of specific cell types. In this project new imaging agents will be developed which respond to specific biological triggers relevant to diseases, for e.g. changes in pH, ionic strength, oxygen tension, redox environment and temperature. The project will involve synthesis of novel functional polymers using controlled radical polymerisation methods and testing of these molecules as imaging agents in animal models. The project is supported by the Australian Research Council and the National Health and Medical Research Council and involves extensive national and international collaboration. The student will receive training in polymer chemistry, NMR and MRI and biomedical sciences. This project is suitable for PhD and Honours students.