Investigating blood vessel control in the retina

Dr Bang Bui and Prof Erica Fletcher (Anatomy & Neuroscience) have been awarded an ARC Discovery grant with funding of $359,800 over 3 years.

The project aims to increase our understanding of how neurons in the central nervous system alter blood flow to meet their metabolic needs. Tight control of the retinal vasculature is crucial for maintaining normal vision. Unlike most blood vessels in the body, those in the retina and brain receive no direct neural control. Rather, they rely on support cells to communicate the needs of neurons. This project aims to examine whether resident immune cells called microglia regulate blood vessels in response to neural activity. This knowledge would improve our understanding of how blood vessels are controlled in the retina and brain. The results may guide the development of novel ways of examining blood vessel function.