Professor Trevor Kilpatrick of the University of Melbourne is an internationally recognized neuroscience researcher. Over the last 20 years, he has been seminally involved, together with Professor Perry Bartlett, in a number of significant paradigm shifts in neuroscience research, in particular as it pertains to neural stem cell research. Professors Kilpatrick and Bartlett were the first to conclusively demonstrate that stem cells exist in the embryonic forebrain (Kilpatrick & Bartlett, Neuron 10: 255) and that neurogenesis occurs within the adult mammalian central nervous system (PNAS 89: 8591).
More recently, Kilpatrick has established that neural stem cell
self-renewal is critically dependent on the LIF receptor signalling
pathway (Mol. Cell. Neurosci. 27:255; Mol. Cell. Neurosci. 31: 739), and
is currently using this background knowledge to underpin transgenic
approaches designed to assess in vivo stem cell responsiveness that are
proposed in the current application. A related area of fundamental
interest of Kilpatrick has been to dissect the neural response to
inflammatory demyelinative insults.
Kilpatrick’s group has established that the neural response is not
passive and that it is a critical determinant of outcome. Kilpatrick has
also established the importance of cytokines in regeneration,
demonstrating the involvement of multipotential stem cells, committed
oligodendrocyte progenitors and pre-existing oligodendrocytes in this
response and resulting in a series of high impact publications (e.g.
Nature Medicine 8: 613; 55, PNAS 103: 7859, 2006).
Within the Stem Cells Australia initiative, Trevor Kilpatrick will act
as CI of a program that continues and extends this work to further the
in depth understanding of how neural precursor cells behave in a variety
of in vivo and in vitro contexts. In particular, the work will further
our understanding of the intrinsic and extrinsic signals for
neurogenesis and the similarities and differences in the capacity of
neural stem cells and oligodendrocyte progenitor cells to commit to the
regenerative response. This work will be carried out in partnership with
Professors Bartlett and Pera.