Anatomy and Physiology

Dr Chris Scott

B ScAgr (Hons), PhD.

Associate Head (Biomedical and Food Sciences) / Senior Lecturer in Applied Biology
Wagga Wagga
Building 288 Room 214

Dr Scott is Associate Head of School, responsible for the Anatomy & Physiology and Food Science teams.  He is a neuroendocrinologist with a particular interest in the brain control of the hormones of reproduction.  This involves a range of projects related to either the neuroanatomy of the brain circuits controlling reproduction, and to the hormonal control of reproductive processes, using a wide variety of animal species. His teaching is in human anatomy & physiology, and pathophysiology at foundational and advanced levels, as well as training research students.

Dr Scott joined CSU in 2003. Prior to that, he was a Senior Research Officer in the Department of Physiology at Monash University, Melbourne. He gained an Agricultural Science degree from Sydney University in 1988 and a PhD from Monash University in 1993. Following this he worked as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Illinois in the USA before returning to Melbourne in 1996 as a Peter Doherty Fellow of the NH&MRC.  Subsequently he was awarded an NH&MRC project grant, to look at the sites and mechanisms of action of testicular steroids in the brain of the male sheep.

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Dr Scott has taught anatomy & physiology, pathophysiology & pharmacology in a wide range of subjects to students from a wide range of health-related courses, at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels.  Most of his teaching, however, is in first year anatomy & physiology subjects.

In 2010, Dr Scott received a Citation from the Australian Learning & Teaching Council. The synopsis of this citation is shown below:

This application is “For engaging and motivating large classes of professional practise-oriented students in service subjects”. Dr Scott motivates and enthuses on-campus and distance education students studying physiology using a twofold approach; through his own passion and enthusiasm for the subject material, and through his commitment to caring for the students. Feedback indicates that this is effective in helping the students want to learn. Techniques to achieve this include the use of e-technologies to create an active on-line environment so students are engaged in a prompt and regular manner. A range of support and learning structures similarly encourage on-campus students.

Dr Scott’s main research interest is in the area of neuroendocrinology, the interaction between the nervous system & the endocrine system. He is particularly interested in the sites and mechanisms of action of sex steroids (oestrogens, progestogens, and androgens) in the hypothalamus and brainstem as they exert their feedback actions on gonadotrophin releasing hormone (GnRH) secretion as well as on other functions of the hypothalamus such as a sexual behaviour and regulation of appetite. Historically most research has been conducted using sheep, but in recent years the species used has diversified considerably.

The main focus of the laboratory over the last several years has been on two recently discovered neuropeptides called kisspeptin and RF-amide related peptide 3 (RFRP3).  These appear to be fundamental to the control of GnRH secretion and hence brain control of reproduction, through a critical role in integrating a diverse array of information regarding the internal and external environment, relaying such information as sex steroid feedback, nutritional status, body weight, age, season, pheromones and ‘stress’. Studies are conducted to determine the neuroanatomical basis for these actions as well as whole animal physiological; studies on the actions of these two peptides.

Recent research has also related to teaching in physiology.

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