http://biochem.otago.ac.nz/Potential research projects 2010.pdf Biochemistry 400-level Honours, DipSci and MSc indicative projects for 2010 Research areas for Biochemistry 400-level Honours, DipSci and MSc projects for 2010 are summarised in this handout. Further details will be provided at the beginning of the new semester in February next year. During the first week of the semester staff are available to discuss potential projects. Typically one 400-level Honours or DipSci student is assigned to one lab. The lab assignments are made at the end of the first week of the semester. If you are interested in a two-year MSc then you are advised to contact the potential supervisors in February 2010. More information on the research interests of individual staff members can be found on the Biochemistry Department's website: http://biochem.otago.ac.nz/staff/index.html [..] Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: XMRV as a potential cause of chronic fatigue syndrome Supervisor: Professor Warren Tate Currently there is no diagnostic test for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) although millions world wide are affected with the syndrome. A very recent Science paper (9.10.09) has linked CFS with a rodent retrovirus XMRV (rather like HIV-1) that can as well cause aggressive prostate cancer. About 70% of the affected group had evidence of the virus compared with only 4% of the control population. My lab has done developmental work on a rogue RNAse L cleavage fragment for a biomarker since it is claimed to be specific for CFS and indirectly to deplete affected cells of 50% of their ATP. We would like to examine the virus and its translational mechanisms as a potential drug target and establish the RNAse L fragment as a biomarker.