Contact us

Dr Puspha Sinnayah

BSc Hons (MonashUni), PhD (UniMelb)

Senior Lecturer, College of Health & Biomedicine

Dr Puspha Sinnayah is a senior lecturer in Biomedical Sciences for the College of Health & Biomedicine.

She received her PhD in neuroscience from the Howard Florey Institute. Under the supervision of Professor Michael McKinley at the Howard Florey Institute, her doctoral work focused on investigating the role of the brain Renin Angiotensin System (RAS) as a neurosignalling mechanism in fluid balance.

Puspha then spent 10 years working in the United States, investigating the central neural mechanisms of homeostasis of appetite and cardiovascular control under the mentorship of Professors Robin Davisson and Michael Cowley respectively.

Various mentoring and collaborative efforts have resulted in 20 peer reviewed publications in the field of hypertension and ingestive behaviour, including articles in Circulation Research, Physiological Genomics, PLoS One and most recently in Diabetes.

She is currently involved in investigating the role of RAS in appetite regulation.


Refereed journal articles

Kievit, P., Halem, H., Marks, D.L., Dong, J.Z., Glavas, M.M., Sinnayah, P., Pranger, L., Cowley, M.A., Grove, K.L. & Culler, M.D. (2013) 'Chronic Treatment With a Melanocortin-4 Receptor Agonist Causes Weight Loss, Reduces Insulin Resistance, and Improves Cardiovascular Function in Diet-Induced Obese Rhesus Macaques', Diabetes, vol. 62, no. 2, pp. 490-7.

Enriori, P.J., Sinnayah, P., Simonds, S.E., Garcia Rudaz, C. & Cowley, M.A. (2011) 'Leptin action in the dorsomedial hypothalamus increases sympathetic tone to brown adipose tissue in spite of systemic leptin resistance', J Neurosci, vol. 31, no. 34, pp. 12189-97.

Lazartigues, E., Sinnayah, P., Augoyard, G., Gharib, C., Johnson, A.K. & Davisson, R.L. (2008) 'Enhanced water and salt intake in transgenic mice with brain-restricted overexpression of angiotensin (AT1) receptors', Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol, vol. 295, no. 5, pp. R1539-45.

Sinnayah, P., Jobst, E.E., Rathner, J.A., Caldera-Siu, A.D., Tonelli-Lemos, L., Eusterbrock, A.J., Enriori, P.J., Pothos, E.N., Grove, K.L. & Cowley, M.A. (2008) 'Feeding induced by cannabinoids is mediated independently of the melanocortin system', PLoS One, vol. 3, no. 5, p. e2202.

Wallingford, N.M., Sinnayah, P., Bymaster, F.P., Gadde, K.M., Krishnan, R.K., McKinney, A.A., Landbloom, R.P., Tollefson, G.D. & Cowley, M.A. (2008) 'Zonisamide prevents olanzapine-associated hyperphagia, weight gain, and elevated blood glucose in rats', Neuropsychopharmacology, vol. 33, no. 12, pp. 2922-33.

Sakai, K., Agassandian, K., Morimoto, S., Sinnayah, P., Cassell, M.D., Davisson, R.L. & Sigmund, C.D. (2007), 'Local production of angiotensin II in the subfornical organ causes elevated drinking', J Clin Invest, vol. 117, no. 4, pp. 1088-95.

Teaching responsibilities

Teaching Anatomy, Physiology, Neuroscience and Pathophysiology in Biomedical Sciences, College of Health and Biomedicine Initiating active learning modules in the study of physiology –such as team based work and online learning tools to improve student learning outcomes.

Currently enrolled in Graduate Certificate in Tertiary Education 2013.


Unit coordinator for RBM1107 Bioscience for paramedics 1 ,RBM1208- Bioscience for paramedics 2, RBM1209 Exercise Physiology and Nutrition for Paramedics- Course HBPX Bachelor of Health Science (Paramedic)

Unit coordinator for RBM2123- Pathophysiology in Midwifery

Course coordinator, Biomedical Sciences, College of Health and Biomedicine

Postgraduate research students and fellows

Current supervision

Co-supervision of 1 Honours student

Research Grants

  • 2007-08: Oregon Primate Research Center: ~$60,000
  • Internal funding grants from Victoria University in 2012-13, totalling $19,000

Professional membership

  • American Physiological Society
  • Society for Neuroscience

Areas of expertise

  • Cardiovascular
  • Neuroscience
  • Obesity

Contact details

+61 3 9919 2262