Dr Dusan Matusica

Senior Lecturer in Human Anatomy

College of Medicine and Public Health

place Flinders Medical Centre Building (6E:406)
GPO Box 2100, Adelaide 5001, South Australia

Dr. Dusan Matusica was appointed as a Lecturer in Anatomy & Histology and Research Associate in the Pain & Pulmonary Neurobiology Lab within the Flinders Medical Science & Technology cluster of the School of Medicine in 2014. He completed his undergraduate studies at Flinders University majoring in Neuroscience and Biochemistry, going on to complete his Honours degree at the Flinders University School of Medicine in Neurophysiology, and received his PhD in Neurobiology in 2008. In 2010 he joined the Queensland Brain Institute at the Univerity of Queensland as a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Alzheimer's disease research group. His research at QBI focused on identifying the regulators of nerve cell death, with the primary interest of understanding the celular and molecular mechanisms causing neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Amyotropic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).

His primary research interest lie in understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms of neuronal injury resulting in pain and/or neurodegeneration. His research focuses on a family of growth factors called neurotrophins (NTs). NTs belong to a family of structurally and functionally related proteins responsible for diverse actions in the developing peripheral and central nervous systems. They are important regulators of neuronal function, affecting neuronal survival and growth. They are able to regulate cell death and survival in development as well as in pathophysiologic states.

The overarching focus of his research are molecular and cellular mechanisms regulating the neuronal trafficking, and signalling pathways involved in the function and development of central and peripheral neurons, as well as the dysregulation of these mechanisms in the pathophysiology of neurodegenerative conditions and chronic pain.


Doctor of Philosophy in Neurobiology (Research)

Bachelor of Science Honours degree in Neurophysiology

Bachelor of Health Science degree in Neuroscience and Biochemistry

Honours, awards and grants

The Australian Neuroscience Society Annual Meeting Postgraduate Student Prize (2008)

The GlaxoSmithKline Victor MacFarlane Graduate Student Prize in Neurobiology (2006 and 2007)

Key responsibilities

Research Associate, Pain and Pulmonary Neurobiology Laboratory

Lecturer in Anatomy and Histology, GEMP Year 2

Teaching interests
  • Macroscopical and microscopical human anatomy.
  • Anatomy and physiology of the musculoskeletal and nervous system.
  • Cellular neurobiology and mechanisms regulating neuronal transport.
  • Pathophysiology of pain
  • Neuroanatomy and intergrative brain function
  • Team Based Learning (TBL)
  • Learning Coach for MD
Topic lecturer
MMED8104 Knowledge of Illness & Health
MMED3937 Pathophysiology for Medical Science
MMED8203 Knowledge of Health and Illness 2
Higher degree by research supervision
Principal supervisor: Analysis of exosomal cargo in pain (1)
Associate supervisor: Neuroscience (2)