Leila Farajzadeh

Videnskabelig medarbejder

Leila Farajzadeh
Se relationer på Aarhus Universitet

Title of PhD project:
Functional Genomics and System Biology of Animal Models


Animal models that closely reflect human physiology and disease are of high value for studies in human medicine. Rodents have classically been ies used for this purpose, but is has become clear that these models needs to be supplemented/supported with studies on animals that more closely reflects the human organism, particularly in terms of genetics, body size, organ physiology and metabolism. The pig is the most promising and very realistic alternative to rodent models, maily because the caracterisation of the porcine genome has taken a major leap forwards but also because the necessary tools for functional genomics, like pig-specific micro-arrays, and SNP-marker-panels have become available.

UniversityFaculty of Science and Technology, Aarhus University
Department

Department of Molecular Genetics and Biotechnology

SupervisorChristian Bendixen, PhD, Research Professor
Local SupervisorHenrik Hornshøj, PhD, PostDoc Scientist
Project term27th April 2009 to 26th April 2012
Masters degreeM.Sc. in Biotechnology

Background

Animal models that closely reflect human physiology and disease are of high value for studies in human medicine. Rodents have classically been ies used for this purpose, but is has become clear that these models needs to be supplemented/supported with studies on animals that more closely reflects the human organism, particularly in terms of genetics, body size, organ physiology and metabolism. The pig is the most promising and very realistic alternative to rodent models, maily because the caracterisation of the porcine genome has taken a major leap forwards but also because the necessary tools for functional genomics, like pig-specific micro-arrays, and SNP-marker-panels have become available.

Aim

The project will apply truly integrative systems biology involving multiple levels of measurement including genotype, phenotype, proteomics, and transcriptomics to characterize animal models. A particular model of obesity/leanness in pigs will be analysed and genes will be identified where mutation/deletion results in an increase in leanness rather than to an increase in obesity. If relevant, the second part of the PhD program will include an integrated molecular analysis of animal models for amyotrophic lateral scelrosis and Parkinson disease.

We will focus on two unique sources of animals:

- A family material of 12.000 animals where genes affecting obesity and growth have been identified in a privious study

- Porcine models for ALS and PD that we have successfully generated by transgenesis

- In the project we will characterise animals at the level of the genome, transscriptome, and proteome and establish associations with animal phenotypes.

· We will integrate data from the mutiple biological levels to achive true systems biology

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