The overarching aim of this research is to elucidate the molecular mechanisms that cells use to move in 3D environments: a basic biological function essential to development and homeostasis. During these processes, cells interact with their surroundings where they translate biophysical forces into biochemical signals to adapt their shape to move. This requires distinct signalling, controlled in space and time, to regulate the crosstalk between organelles and the cytoskeleton. To date, the role of microtubules remains elusive. Using interdisciplinary approaches combining advanced imaging technology with novel cell biology methods, the project aims to uncover fundamental knowledge about how cells interact with their environment.

Traineeships, honours and PhD projects include:

  • Microtubule-dependent positioning of organelles
  • Understanding the role of microtubules in protecting cells from mechanical stress
  • The role of the mechano-environment in metastatic disease and therapy resistance
  • Regulation of protease secretion by microtubule-dependent targeting to cell-matrix attachments

Who can apply:

Students looking for research projects (Honours, Masters by research or PhD). A working knowledge of Cell Biology, Microscopy and microfluidics would be of benefit to someone working on this project. The applicant will demonstrate academic achievement in the field(s) of Cell Biology and the potential for scholastic success.  A background or knowledge of Engineering/optics is highly desirable. Please contact Dr Samantha Stehbens.