PhD scholarship: Investigating novel treatment strategies to prevent post-traumatic epilepsy


Enrolment status New students
Student type Domestic students, International students
Level of study Higher Degree by Research
Study area Medicine, Science and Mathematics
HDR funding type Living stipend scholarship, Tuition Scholarship
Scholarship value $28,597 per annum (2021 rate), indexed annually
Scholarship duration 3.5 years with the possibility of 1 extension in line with UQ and RTP Scholarship Policy
Opening date 28 July 2021
Closing date 6 October 2021


Supervisor – Professor David Reutens

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is a significant health issue and is frequently complicated by the development of epilepsy. There are currently no clinically proven preventive or disease modifying therapies for post-traumatic epilepsy (PTE) and anticonvulsants have consistently failed to prevent epileptogenesis, the pathological process that leads to the development and progression of spontaneous recurrent epileptic seizures.

A substantial body of evidence supports a key role for inflammation in epileptogenesis. It is also well recognised that TBI induces a vigorous inflammatory response through the release of danger signals, molecules that help to recruit immune cells to the site of injury and to activate them. This PhD explores the premise that therapies that block danger signalling may prevent or ameliorate post-traumatic epilepsy. The project will use a combination of imaging and inflammatory molecule profiling in a preclinical model of TBI and PTE to assess a novel monoclonal antibody therapy. The candidate should be enthusiastic about learning new techniques and be able to work both independently and in a team environment.

A working knowledge of molecular biology, animal handling and imaging (MRI, PET) would be of benefit to someone working on this project.

Centre for Advanced Imaging

The scholarship is based at the Centre for Advanced Imaging (CAI), a strategic initiative of The University of Queensland, which is a leading imaging research facility in Australia, and one of a handful in the world. The CAI brings together the skills of a critical mass of researchers and state-of-the-art, world- or Australian-first imaging research instruments including NMR, EPR, MRI, PET, CT, optical and an on-site cyclotron and radiochemistry facilities.

CAI hosts the largest Node of the National Imaging Facility (NIF). CAI conducts research across the spectrum from development of new imaging technologies, analysis of molecular structure, synthesis of MRI and PET biomarkers targeting fundamental biological processes to studies of major diseases affecting a range of organ systems, through to imaging economically significant agricultural animals and plant material, minerals and construction materials.


To be eligible, you must meet the entry requirements for a higher degree by research.

This scholarship is open to Australian citizens, permanent residents and International students who are currently in Australia at the time of application and commencement.

Before you get started

If this scholarship has rules, download and read them.

How to apply

To apply for admission and scholarship, follow this link. There is no separate application for scholarship because you will have the opportunity to request scholarship consideration on the application for admission.

Before submitting an application you should:

When you apply, please ensure that under the scholarships and collaborative study section you:

  1. Select ‘My higher degree is not collaborative’
  2. Select 'I am applying for, or have been awarded a scholarship or sponsorship'.
  3. Select ‘Other’, then ‘Research Project Scholarship’ and type in ‘EPILEPSY-REUTENS’ in the 'Name of scholarship' field.

See an example of what you have to do

Learn more about applying for a higher degree by research at UQ

Selection criteria

Applications will be judged on a competitive basis taking into account the applicant’s previous academic record, publication record, honours and awards, and employment history.

The applicant will demonstrate academic achievement in the field/s of biology, neuroscience or a science-related discipline and the potential for scholastic success.

A background or knowledge of molecular biology, MRI and PET imaging and epilepsy is highly desirable.


Professor David Reutens
+61 7 3365 4237

Terms and conditions

Read the policy on UQ Research Scholarships.

A domestic part-time student with carer’s responsibilities, a medical condition or a disability, which prevents them from studying full time may be eligible for scholarship consideration, on a case by case basis.