BDNF protein’s influence on myelination in the brain and spinal cord

Agnes Wong

The University of Melbourne, VIC

| A cure via repair and regeneration | Neurobiology | Travel Award | 2011 | Investigator Led Research |


Agnes Wong is completing her PhD under the supervision of Dr Simon Murray at the University of Melbourne. Agnes’ current research will increase our understanding of how a specific protein called BDNF exerts its influence on myelination in the brain and spinal cord .

Agnes is proving to be a promising future leader in MS research with an outstanding academic record and skilled in a range of techniques in molecular and cellular biology, biochemistry, as well as mouse genetics. Dr Murray says, “Agnes is extremely thorough in her work, displays a strong work ethic and is without doubt dedicated to her research”.

Agnes has organised several laboratory visits and presentations to dovetail the 2010 Annual Meting of the Society of Neuroscience (SfN) to assess possibilities for an international post-doctoral position. SfN in San Diego (USA) will be Agnes’ first overseas trip to present at a scientific conference. SfN is the largest international neuroscience meeting and as such provides the best opportunity to hear the most recent advances in the myelin field, present and discuss her research and build international connections and collaborations which could broaden her current research.

Agnes has also organised several laboratory visits, with the intention of meeting with and presenting her data to leaders in the myelin field. These visits include Prof Wendy Macklin and her team at the University of Colorado and Prof James Salzer and his team at New York University.

These visits represent a unique opportunity for Agnes to discuss her current work, scope opportunities for collaborative interaction and establish new personal networks with leaders in the myelin field.

Dr Murray highlights, 'Obtaining this funding will be pivotal to take her to the next stage of her scientific career. It will not only provide Agnes with great insight into the international context of myelin research, but also allow her to experience first hand the breadth and depth of myelin research that is being undertaken overseas.'

Agnes also commented, 'Professor Salzer is well known in studying the nodal structure and he has guided me to proper examination of the nodes in my mice. Another aspect of my project is oligodendrocyte differentiation. Professor Macklin is an expert in this area and she has provided some feedback on my current work. Their feedback has added remarkable value to the quality of my thesis.'

'To me, this overseas trip has been incredibly valuable. I sincerely thank Multiple Sclerosis Research Australia for their generous support of this trip. Their help has extended beyond the sciences and I feel privileged to have support from an organisation which cares about postgraduate student career and personal development,' she added.

Updated: 30 June 2012

Updated: 01 January, 2011

Grant Awarded

  • Ian Ballard Travel Fellowship

Total Funding

  • $6,000


  • 1 year over 2011

Funding Partner

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BDNF protein’s influence on myelination in the brain and spinal cord