• 532 Citations
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Personal profile


Dr Marco Morsch is a mid-career neuroscientist and group leader at the Department of Biomedical Sciences of the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at Macquarie University. Marco received his PhD in 2009 from the University of Bonn, Germany, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Sydney. In 2014 Marco moved to Macquarie University to work at the ‘Centre for MND Research’.

Dr Morsch has established the first Australian zebrafish platform to characterise the process of neurodegeneration and monitor the interactions of phagocytosing microglia in real-time in the CNS of a living vertebrate (zebrafish). His unique research program allowed him to make important advances in the study of neurological diseases and, more recently, in the underlying principles of neuron-glia interactions in the healthy and stressed nervous system.

In 2018 he was awarded the ‘Outstanding mid-career researcher’ prize by MND Research Institute of Australia.

Research interests

Dr Morsch’s research program investigates the molecular & cellular pathways affected in neurodegeneration, using novel visualization techniques, advanced molecular tools, & innovative approaches to enhance drug delivery.

To study the underlying pathological mechanism of disease he has established unique live-imaging and laser-ablation protocols to accurately monitor the degeneration process of motor neurons in the CNS and its impact on surrounding cells.

Overall the zebrafish program closes a critical gap in the field by providing a preclinical animal model that allows real-time characterisation of cellular processes in the CNS.

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  • 7 Similar Profiles
Zebrafish Medicine & Life Sciences
Motor Neurons Medicine & Life Sciences
Muscles Medicine & Life Sciences
Cholinergic Receptors Medicine & Life Sciences
Myasthenia Gravis Medicine & Life Sciences
Phosphotransferases Medicine & Life Sciences
Neuromuscular Junction Medicine & Life Sciences
Microglia Medicine & Life Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 2015 2022

Research Outputs 2009 2019

Albumin uptake and distribution in the zebrafish liver as observed via correlative imaging

Cheng, D., Morsch, M., Shami, G. J., Chung, R. S. & Braet, F., 1 Jan 2019, In : Experimental Cell Research. 374, 1, p. 162-171 10 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Multimodal Imaging

Muscle specific kinase protects dystrophic mdx mouse muscles from eccentric contraction-induced loss of force-producing capacity

Trajanovska, S., Ban, J., Huang, J., Gregorevic, P., Morsch, M., Allen, D. G. & Phillips, W. D., Sep 2019, In : Journal of Physiology. 597, 18, p. 4831-4850 20 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Inbred mdx Mouse
Muscle Contraction

Pathogenic mutation in the ALS/FTD gene, CCNF, causes elevated Lys48-linked ubiquitylation and defective autophagy.

Lee, A., Rayner, S. L., Gwee, S. S. L., De Luca, A., Shahheydari, H., Sundaramoorthy, V., Morsch, M., Hogan, A., Don, E., Williams, K., Yerbury, J. J., Blair, I., Atkin, J. D., Molloy, M. P. & Chung, R. S., 8 Feb 2019. 1 p.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractResearchpeer-review


Using proteomics to identify ubiquitin ligase–substrate pairs: how novel methods may unveil therapeutic targets for neurodegenerative diseases

Rayner, S. L., Morsch, M., Molloy, M. P., Shi, B., Chung, R. & Lee, A., Jul 2019, In : Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences. 76, 13, p. 2499–2510 12 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

Neurodegenerative Diseases
Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases

Aurora kinase B regulates axonal outgrowth and regeneration in the spinal motor neurons of developing zebrafish

Gwee, S. S. L., Radford, R. A. W., Chow, S., Syal, M. D., Morsch, M., Formella, I., Lee, A., Don, E. K., Badrock, A. P., Cole, N. J., West, A. K., Cheung, S. N. S. & Chung, R. S., Dec 2018, In : Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences. 75, 23, p. 4269-4285 17 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Aurora Kinase B
Motor Neurons


health science
research facility
academic career

Press / Media

Outdoor Festival of Science at the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney 2019

Marco Morsch


1 media contribution

Press/Media: Public Engagement Activities

Will see-through fish help cure muscle-killing disease?

Marco Morsch


1 item of media coverage

Press/Media: Other

Making zebrafish glow to better understand motor neuron disease

Marco Morsch


1 media contribution

Press/Media: Public Engagement Activities

Glow in the dark creatures helping scientists identify toxic cells

Marco Morsch


1 item of media coverage

Press/Media: Public Engagement Activities