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Feb 2017
Trish Foundation contributes to first-ever discovery
Jun 2017
Researchers funded by the Trish Foundation making great progress
Dec 2017
Announcement by NHMRC
Jan 2018
2018 Round of Funding Four new Projects announced
Jun 2018
Exciting regrowth of nerve fibres
Jun 2018
Dr Merson secures $1 million from NHMRC
Jun 2018
Findings submitted for publication
Jan 2019
New Research Projects commencing 2019 announced

Jason Mackenzie adds more pieces

to the MS genes puzzle


In 2009 Jason Mackenzie was awarded a three year PhD scholarship jointly funded by the Trish Multiple Sclerosis Research Foundation and MS Research Australia.  Supervised by Professor Lyn Griffiths at the Genomics Research Centre, Griffith University, Mr Mackenzie has made excellent progress on his project investigating differences in gene activity in people with MS compared to those without MS.  The aim of the research is to pinpoint genes that are involved in the development of MS, so that new approaches to treatment can be considered.  

In his project, Mr Mackenzie is using state-of-the-art genetic technology to conduct a detailed analysis of gene expression (which genes are switched on) in people with MS.   There are five gene regions that have so far been identified as potentially containing genes that increase susceptibility to MS.  These regions are found on chromosomes 5, 6, 7, 17 and 19.  Mr Mackenzie will be investigating these and other promising new regions of interest.  ‘I have undertaken laboratory investigations examining the regions of several sex hormone genes, and also Vitamin D gene regions, for association with Multiple Sclerosis within an Australian population,’ reported Mr Mackenzie. ‘I’m getting very interesting results that may have implications for some MS sufferers.’  

Mr Mackenzie has also gained expertise that will be invaluable in the next stage of his PhD project by spending time learning skills from international experts in MS.  ‘I have spent time with the director of the Brain Bank in the Netherlands learning how to classify and stage the different lesion types in MS affected brain samples, and interpret the clinical data associated with each sample,’ explained Mr Mackenzie.

Mr Mackenzie has presented his promising research findings at three national MS conferences and has submitted a scientific paper for publication.    

Trish Foundation & MS Research Australia Working together to find a cure for MS
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