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Zhizhen Wang

ACRE Affilate PhD student - University of Wollongong

Zhizhen Wang is a PhD candidate in the School of Medicine at the University of Wollongong (UoW) and Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute (IHMRI).

Her PhD project focuses on the neuroprotective and anti-ageing roles of cannabidiol (CBD) in ageing and Alzheimer’s disease models. During her PhD, Zhizhen is supervised by Professor Xu-Feng Huang, Professor Nadia Solowij and Dr Katrina Green to reveal a novel signalling pathway of CBD for inhibiting neurodegeneration.

Zhizhen has demonstrated the neuroprotective effects of CBD in animal models (mouse and C. elegans) and in vitro cell models (neurons and human astrocytes). In collaboration with Dr Yee Lian Chew, Zhizhen shows that CBD has the potential effect to enhance longevity and neuronal health in neurodegenerative Caenorhabditis elegans models. To overcome the low bioavailability of CBD, she encapsulates CBD with the biomaterial exosomes to create a novel drug delivery platform for CBD. The findings of her research will support the potential therapeutic approach of CBD for the treatment of AD patient and develop new drug delivery platform for CBD.

Zhizhen is a member of the ACRE Capacity Building Group.