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nbroom34
12-20-2004, 05:25 AM
NOTE: This posting is being repeated because there may have been
blocking of potential responses by the University of Auckland email
server when this position was first posted on 8/12/04. Would all
interested persons please contact Associate Professor Broom WITHOUT
using an attachment in the first instance. Contact details are given below.

A two-year postdoctoral position is available in the School of
Engineering, University of Auckland

Research title: "The mechanisms of structural weakening of cartilage in
early osteoarthritis"

Description of proposed research:
Osteoarthritis eventually destroys the joint cartilage. However, before
visible cartilage loss occurs it weakens and becomes more vulnerable to
what would normally be safe levels of loading. Cartilage derives its
remarkable mechanical strength from a 3-D architecture of collagen
fibrils which actively constrains the proteoglycan component against
swelling in the presence of water. These two components cooperate to
create the excellent load-bearing characteristics of cartilage. The
eventual osteoarthritic destruction of cartilage is intimately tied up
with important changes in these two components and in their
interrelationship. Gaining an in-depth understanding of these changes
occurring during the early stages of the disease forms the basis of the
proposed investigation.

The research will seek to determine to what extent the spatial integrity
of the 3-D network of collagen fibrils, crucial to the effective
containment of the high swelling proteoglycans and therefore the loading
bearing ability of articular cartilage, is knitted into a coherent
structure by largely entwinement-based interconnections or by some form
of mediated linkage that is not entwinement based. If it can be
demonstrated that physical entwinement is a relatively unimportant
network linking mechanism this would place the focus on molecular agents
that would fulfil this crucial role of network linkage.

The research will have a strong micro and ultrastructural emphasis (SEM
and TEM) and the successful candidate will be working in a
biomechanics/biomaterials laboratory with a substantial history of
innovative cartilage research.
Commencing salary: NZ$57,442

In the first instance interested persons should contact:-
Neil D. Broom
Associate Professor
Biomaterials
Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering
University of Auckland
Private bag 92019
Auckland, New Zealand
PH. 64 9 3737599 Ext. 88974 (messages ext. 88112)
Fax 64 9 3737463
E-Mail nd.broom@auckland.ac.nz

(Please do not use an attachment in first instance)

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