Neurodevelopment in Health and Disease

Neurodevelopment in Health and Disease

Image: Hill-Yardin Group

Neurodevelopment in Health and Disease

Neurodevelopment in Health and Disease

Neurodevelopment in Health and Disease

Neurodevelopment in Health and Disease

We are a multidisciplinary research program identifying the determinants of healthy brain development, and combating the early origins of neurological disease across the lifespan.

Contact us

To contact an individual researcher please see our who we are page. Alternatively, reach out to our Program Leader, Professor David Walker using the button below. 

Research focus

We are Australian leaders in functional and structural examination of the brain and peripheral nervous system. We are discovering the fundamental neural changes that occur during development, and how these might be changed or disrupted by disease and environmental impacts. Our research across the lifespan is advancing our understanding of how to keep the brain healthy for longer.


Our research addresses fundamental neurobiological questions and important biomedical problems including: poor fetal growth, cerebral palsy, obesity, stress, cognitive dysfunction, cardiovascular disease, stroke, sleep disorders, and the origins of behavioural abnormalities such as autism.

We use molecular, pharmacological, microfluidics, neurophysiological, and behavioural assessment techniques to enable the investigation of oxidative stress, neurogenesis and myelination, mitochondrial function, regulation of brain energy supply, neuroendocrinology of stress, quantitative assessment of behaviour and cognition, and detailed evaluation of brain structure using MRI/MRS, electrophysiology, qPCR, Next-Gen sequencing, super-resolution microscopy and immunohistochemistry.

Our impact

We work with a range of Australian and global organisations to provide innovative discoveries into maximizing brain health. 

Latest Health and Biomedical Science news

How stress can turn our bodies against us – and what we can do about it

Stress is an inevitable part of life, but what happens when it starts to negatively affect our health? And what exactly does chronic stress do to our bodies?

Research confirms gut-brain connection in autism

People with autism often suffer from gut problems, but nobody has known why. Researchers have now discovered the same gene mutations – found both in the brain and the gut – could be the cause.

Unpacking the links: Chronic stress, fertility and the ‘hunger hormone’

Researchers have uncovered a new link between chronic stress and reproductive problems, in a pre-clinical study that shines the spotlight on a hunger-triggering hormone.

Five things you should know about the brain in your gut

From moods to memory, the brain in our guts has a big impact on the brain in our heads.

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Acknowledgement of country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nations on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business.

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