Circulating microRNAs as potential blood biomarker for diabetes in domestic cats


Feline diabetes mellitus is a significant health problem for cats across the globe and treatment of affected cats is a major commitment for owners. Our project will explore links between microRNAs and diabetes with the aim to develop a biomarker signature to enable early detection and better treatment of the disease.


Dr Bianca Waud

Research Location

Sydney School of Veterinary Science

Program Type



Students working on this project will have the opportunity to explore circulating microRNAs using qPCR. Seven feline microRNAs have been seelcted based on recent research and previously described implications in beta-cell dysfunction and lipid derangement in human T2D patients. With this project we expect to identify potential blood biomarkers that will not only facilitate early and easy diagnosis of diabetes in cats but will improve diagnostic accuracy.

Additional Information

Students working on this project are required to work closely with veterinary specialists at the University of Sydney Veterinary Teaching Hospital Sydney.

HDR Inherent Requirements
In addition to the academic requirements set out in the Science Postgraduate Handbook, you may be required to satisfy a number of inherent requirements to complete this degree. Examples of inherent requirements may include:
- Confidential disclosure and registration of a disability that may hinder your performance in your degree;
- Confidential disclosure of a pre-existing or current medical condition that may hinder your performance in your degree (e.g. heart disease, pace-maker, significant immune suppression, diabetes, vertigo, etc.);
- Ability to perform independently and/or with minimal supervision;
- Ability to undertake certain physical tasks (e.g. heavy lifting);
- Ability to undertake observatory, sensory and communication tasks;
- Ability to spend time at remote sites (e.g. One Tree Island, Narrabri and Camden);
- Ability to work in confined spaces or at heights;
- Ability to operate heavy machinery (e.g. farming equipment);
- Hold or acquire an Australian driver’s licence;
- Hold a current scuba diving license;
- Hold a current Working with Children Check;
- Meet initial and ongoing immunisation requirements (e.g. Q-Fever, Vaccinia virus, Hepatitis, etc.)

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microRNA, feline, blood biomarker, diabetes, domestic cat, mellitus, beta-cell dysfunction, lipid derangement

Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is: 2783