Our research

Our research

High quality, collaborative and translational medical research is the department’s strength. It’s the reason we attract such a high calibre of teaching staff and higher degree research candidates.

The Department of Biomedical Sciences’ research investigates the cause of disease at the molecular and cellular level, the genetic origins of cancers, how neurological and cardiovascular diseases develop and the underlying reasons behind human nervous system dysfunction.

Our research is improving the understanding of diseases including; cancer, neurosciences, dementia, genetic and degenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease, Machado Joseph disease, Polyglutamine disease, Spinocerebellar ataxia, and motor neurone disease (MND).

Collaboration at our core

Focusing on a multi-disciplinary approach, research within the department is often conducted in collaboration with the Department of Clinical Medicine and the Macquarie University Hospital.

Teamwork across our biomedical and clinical teams has expanded understanding of the molecular origins of disease and led to a number of key discoveries—such as identifying the genetic causes of breast cancer and melanoma, and identifying the genetic origins of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (also known as motor neurone disease).

Macquarie’s pioneering role in dementia and MND research saw the department receive more than $6 million in funding from the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) in 2015 to research the biological origins of the diseases in order to find new models of care, treatment and prevention.

Cross-departmental collaborations and key partnerships

The Department of Biomedical Sciences also has established relationships with:

Our strong collaborative partnerships extend to researchers from universities, medical institutions, and industry bodies through Australia and internationally—including the Crown Princess Mary Cancer Centre, University of Oslo, Melanoma Institute of Australia, and the Paris-Saclay Institute of Neuroscience.

Research facilities

Our state-of the-art facilities include:

  • The university’s largest lab certified to Physical Containment Level 2 (PC2)
  • High-performance computing facilities for molecular modelling
  • Simulation laboratory for medical training, anatomy laboratory and purpose-built physiotherapy facilities.
  • Unique animal and cell models supported by a zebrafish laboratory and advanced imagery rigs including a Kodak in-vivo imaging system for whole body imaging of small animals.
  • Quality equipment for tissue collection, laser microdissection, sampling, testing and analysis such as: High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC); real-time Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) machine; Instron tensile testing system; and Optronis camera and retinal vessel analyser.
  • On-campus clinics and hospital with current imaging capabilities, including two high-field 3 Tesla MRI scanners and a PET-CT scanner.
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