January 2023

Amazing work from Ben Mitchell, who was awarded an RTP to commence his PhD in the lab this month. Welcome Ben!

December 2022

Laura presented her work at the recent ANS conference. Well done Laura!

Both Ben and Kirra achieved First Class Honours, which is an amazing effort. Well done!

Welcome to Lucy, who joined us for a summer project this year.

November 2022

Laura gave a talk at the 2022 SBMS Postgrad Symposium. Well done!

Ben and Kirra finished up their Honours journey this month. They both did an amazing job.

Stefan, Mike and Mikael were fortunate this month to be awarded an ARC Discovery Project this round. This grant will focus on understanding the mechanisms behind the expansion of the anterior portion of the central nervous system

Welcome to Lucy, who joined us for a Summer Project this month

October 2022

Danyon had his PhD thesis conferred this month. Well done mate! He is now in Canada starting his postdoc at the University of Toronto.

September 2022

Welcome to Mikki and Zennjo, who joined the lab to do semester projects in the second half of the year. Also welcome to Dr Nigel Kee, who joined the Thor lab as part of our project on modelling hypothalamic development in vitro.

Well done to Raul for passing his M2 in style this month.

Danyon also sailed through his oral presentation this month, and is ever so close to being conferred his PhD.

A huge shout out to lab alumnus Dr Lachlan Harris, who was awarded an ARC DECRA this month.

August 2022

Danyon’s paper was recently published in Cells. A great finish for Danyon before he heads to Canada for his post-doc.

June 2022

Danyon’s thesis is now out with his examiners. Fingers crossed!

Our collaborative paper on Elp mutations with the Wainwright lab is now fully available online through Embo Molecular Medicine.

May 2022

A HUGE well done to Danyon, who has submitted his thesis recently. Congratulations mate.

Our latest collaborative paper with the Wainwright lab (Diamantina Institute) was recently accepted for publication in Embo Molecular Medicine. Well done all!

April 2022

Well done to Raul, Tracey, Danyon and Cassy. Their paper on NFIX in meiosis within the testis is now available online in Biology of Reproduction.

Ben and Kirra did great jobs with their Honours proposals and seminars. Well done!

Danyon has been offered a post-doctoral position in the lab of Scott Yuzwa (University of Toronto). A great achievement, Danyon!

Ben won multiple awards at the recent Faculty of Medicine awards night, including the Third Year Developmental Biology Prize (2021) and the Elspeth McLachlan Prize (2021; awarded to the student with the highest overall percentage marks for NEUR3001 and NEUR3002)

We welcome Alexandra Pelenyi to the lab. Sandy will be performing a PhD with us on cortical development.

March 2022

This month we were fortunate to receive funding from the RTW Charitable foundation for our work on Malan syndrome.

Our collaborative paper with the Thor lab on the role of Eed in hypothalamic development was just published in Development. Check it out!

Well done to Ben and Kirra, who got their Honours proposals submitted.

Mike was fortunate enough to receive the Leader of the Future (Academic) award at the recent Faculty of Medicine awards night.

February 2022

Welcome to our new Honours students, Kirra and Ben, who joined the lab this month. Kirra will be analysing the transcriptional control of hypothalamic formation, while Ben will be analysing the contribution of epigenetic modifications to adult brain structure.

Congratulations to Raul, whose first author paper on the role of NFIX in spermatogenesis was just accepted to Biology of Reproduction. A fantastic effort.

Well done to Laura, who sailed through her second PhD milestone this month.

January 2022

Our lab, in collaboration with the Thor lab (SBMS), were fortunate enough to be awarded an ARC Discovery Project grant late last year. This project will investigate the generation of hypothalamic sleep neurons.

A collaborative paper with the Barry lab (QIMR) on transcriptional changes within the human subependymal zone across the course of aging was recently published in Scientific Reports.

Our paper with the Smith lab (QUT) on the role of Notch signalling in melanoma metastasis was recently published online in The Journal of Investigative Dermatology. Great work Mitch Fane!!

Welcome to Ben Mitchell, who has been doing a summer project in the lab.

Also welcome to Sandy Pelenyi, who has been awarded a RTP to perform her PhD in the lab.

Another collaborative paper with Marija Kojic from the Wainwright lab was recently submitted. Fingers crossed!

Our paper with the Ng and Khanna labs on the role of Cep55 in brain development was recently published in PLOS Genetics. Amazing work from the first author, Ben Rashidieh!

December 2021

Our collaborative study performed with Marija Kojic from the Wainwright lab was recently published in Nature Communications. This was an incredible paper; well done Marija!

We recently had a collaborative paper with the Barry lab accepted for publication in Scientific Reports. This paper looks at the changes in gene expression in the human subependymal cell layer over the course of aging.

The Piper lab had an interesting Xmas party this year, releasing some frustration at the Rage Cage! 

Piper Lab xmas party

August 2021

Danyon passed his M3 in August; well done mate!

A collaborative paper from the Shannon Weickert lab on adult neurogenesis in aging and disease was recently published in Molecular Psychiatry

July 2021

Well done to Imogen, who was offered an RTP scholarship to do her PhD studies in the lab of Rodrigo Suarez and Laura Fenlon

Our manuscript with the Simmons lab on transcriptional changes in the cortex of Slc14a4 KO mice was recently published in BMC Research Notes. Well done to Tracey for driving this.

June 2021

Congratulations to Laura, whose review on brain formation was recently published in Development.

May 2021

This month, we finished up our lab move, on level 6 of the Otto Hirschfeld building. We are now co-located with the Bowles and Thor labs, and we’re looking forward to advancing our collaborations with these groups.

Well done to Imogen, who finished up her Honours in our lab this month

We were sad to see Tracey leave the lab this month. Tracey is moving to a position as a floor manager at UQCCR. All the best, Trace!

Sazia’s paper has been accepted at Experimental Neurology. Well done Sazia, and thanks to the Simmons and Bellingham labs for this excellent collaboration.

April 2021

Danyon’s review in Seminars in Cell and Developmental Biology recently came out in its final form. Check it out!!

Mike recently acted as Guest Editor for an edition of Frontiers in Neuroscience:  Context-Dependent Regulation of Neurogenesis. This is now published; an Editorial about the issue can be found here.

Well done to Raul, who passed his M1 this month

March 2021

An image from Maria and Laura’s recent Cerebral Cortex paper has been chosen for the cover of the April issue. Well done!!

Cerebral Cortex cover

February 2021

Well done to Cooper for getting a 7 on his summer project.

I was lucky enough to attend the February 2021 graduations, and to see my wonderful PhD students Diana Vidovic, James Fraser and Sabrina Oishi graduate. An amazing effort from them all!

PhD graduates

January 2021

A huge well done to Laura, who sailed through her first milestone recently. A great effort!

We had 2 collaborative papers accepted in January, including a manuscript on Elongator mutations and brain disorders with the Wainwright lab (accepted to Nature Communications), and a manuscript on Notch signalling in melanoma with the Smith lab (accepted to The Journal of Investigative Dermatology). Both incredibly exciting projects!

December 2020

Our recent paper with our excellent collaborators from the Palpant and Boden labs was recently published in Cell Systems.  Check it out!

Our paper on USP9X patients mutations with some other fantastic collaborators (Lachlan Jolly and Jozef Gecz) was also recently published in Genomic Medicine. Well worth a read!

November 2020

Maria and Laura’s paper was recently published online in Cerebral Cortex. Well done all!

October 2020

Well done to Imogen, who did a wonderful job in her Honours proposal seminar. Imogen’s project on the role of the NFI family in hypothalamic development is looking exciting.

Maria and Laura recently had their manuscript on the behavioural and cortical abnormalities in Usp9x deficient mice accepted to Cerebral Cortex. A big well done to them, as well as to our wonderful collaborators, Nyoman Kurniawan, Stephen Wood, Lachlan Jolly and Tom Burne.

We also had a paper accepted in Cell Systems through our collaborators in the Palpant/Boden labs, and another accepted in Genomic Medicine through our collaborators in the Jolly/Gecz labs.

September 2020

Well done Dr. James Fraser on getting your PhD resubmitted and conferred this month. A great effort!

We recently had another paper with our wonderful collaborators in the Ng lab published in Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology.

Congrats to Elise, whose paper was recently published in BMC Research Notes.

August 2020

Great effort from Cathy, Sazia and Tracey, as our latest collaborative paper with the Simmons lab was published this month in Biology Open

Our review on ependymal cell function, written with Helen Cooper (QBI), was recently accepted in Seminars in Cell and Developmental Biology. Well done to Danyon for writing this review.

Our review on the role of adult neurogenesis on olfaction was also recently published in Bioessays. Congratulations Joanna and Oressia!

I am very proud of Sabrina, who was recently awarded her PhD. A simply fantastic effort!!

July 2020

We had another paper accepted for publication with our fantastic collaborators from the Simmons lab. Well done to Cathy for driving this through

Well done to James, who had very positive comments back from his thesis reviewers

Oressia just had a last author review article accepted for publication in BioEssays. Well done Resh!

June 2020

Well done to Maria, who has formally been awarded her PhD. Champagne time!

Congratulations to Alex, who has also been awarded her PhD!

Sabrina got excellent comments back from her thesis examiners, so is also very close to getting over the PhD line. Well done Sabrina!

May 2020

Sazia was recently awarded a travel bursary from FENS to attend their 2020 meeting. Well done Sazia!

Congratulations to James for submitting his PhD thesis, and to Maria for resubmitting hers. Fingers crossed both!!

April 2020

Well done to Raul, who was awarded a scholarship to do his PhD. Raul will be working on a project with our lab and that of Jo Bowles, looking at the molecular control of spermatogenesis

During this coronavirus hiatus, the lab has been madly writing and submitting papers. A big pat on the back to everyone in the lab!

March 2020

A huge well done to Sabrina, who submitted her PhD thesis recently. A massive effort, and hopefully it will sail through the process quickly

Congrats to Sazia, who was awarded a travel scholarship from SBMS to attend the upcoming FENS meeting in Europe

February 2020

Raul achieved First Class Honours for his work on NFIX in the testis. Well done Raul!

Maria has had her review on Usp9x in development and disease published. Good work.

Sabrina has also had her excellent work on Sotos syndrome published in Genes, Brain and Behavior. Excellent stuff!

January 2020

Sabrina Oishi, a PhD student in the Piper lab recently was accepted to the 2020 STEM Policy Internship at the Australian Academy for Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE), in Melbourne. This is a 3-month internship, and was very competitive, so well done Sabrina!

Sabrina also won the 2019 SBMS HDR student Research Excellence Award.

Sabrina, as well as Maria Kasherman, another PhD student from the Piper lab, also won imaging awards at the Faculty of Medicine Research Excellence Awards night in December last year.

Well done to James, whose paper on shared targets for NFIA and NFIX was accepted in The Cerebellum.

Well done to Laura, who obtained a HDR scholarship, and who joins us in January to start her PhD.

Raul’s first first author paper came out in its final form. Well done Raul!

December 2019

Well done to Laura, who got a First Class Honours mark!

Well done also to Raul for finishing up his Honours project with us and the Bowles lab

Our collaborative paper with the Penzes lab (Northwestern) was recently published in Neuron. This paper got some good publicity; see below!

November 2019

Well done to Sabrina, who breezed through her M3. Good luck with the thesis writing Sabrina!

Well done to Belal, from the Ng lab, who’s paper was recently accepted into Human Molecular Genetics

October 2019

Well done to Laura and Sandy for finishing up their Honours projects; both did amazingly well.

Congrats to Maria, who has taken up some part time work at the SBMS Imaging facility.

We recently had a paper with our great collaborators including the Richards lab accepted in the American Journal of Medical Genetics.

Well done to Raul, Danyon, Laura and James. Our paper with the wonderful Josephine Bowles was recently accepted in the Journal of Molecular Histology.  

September 2019

Mike was lucky enough to snare a UQ Award for Excellence in HDR Supervision (Emerging Advisor Award). Thanks to all of the fantastic HDR students I have had the honour of working with. Check out the video.

Our paper with our wonderful collaborators in the Coulson lab on the role of the p75 neurotrophin receptor in cortical development is now available here.

August 2019

Check out Mike, Sherry and Lizzie discussing chronic diseases for the Faculty of Medicine.

Well done to Sonja, for absolutely smashing her M3 presentation, and for having her first paper accepted in Development. An awesome effort!

July 2019

Congratulations to James, who has taken a job at the SBMS imaging facility. We look forward to interacting with him productively in coming years!

June 2019

Our manuscript on Usp9x in human patients is now available online.

May 2019

Our paper with the Simmons lab on a novel model for autism is now available online from EBioMedicine.

Well done to Sabrina and Maria, who contributed to a lovely piece of collaborative work with DrLachlan Jolly (University of Adelaide) and Professor Stephen Wood (Griffith University), that was just accepted for publication in Biological Psychiatry.

April 2019

Well done to Cathy Zhang (Simmons lab), for her lovely work on a novel mouse model for autism that has just been accepted in EBioMedicine. We hope this is the first in a long list of collaborative works with the Simmons lab.

Well done to Danyon, who passed his M1. Onwards and upwards!

March 2019

Congrats to Diana, who has been conferred her doctorate from our august institute. Well done!!

Well done to Laura and Sandy, who did very well in the Honours proposal seminars.

February 2019

Congrats to Di, who submitted the corrections for her thesis this month.

Maria sailed through her last milestone presentation; well done you!

Check out the UQ FoM blog featuring Mike discussing Rare Disease Day.

January 2019

Congratulations to Sabrina, whose work on Malan syndrome was recently published in EBioMEdicine. Her work made the cover of this issue!

Welcome also to Laura, who recently joined the lab for her Honours project. Good luck throughout the year Laura.

December 2018

Well done to James, who was awarded the best student poster presentation at the recent EMBL Australia Postgraduate Symposium.

Sonja and Sabrina were both winners at the recent ANS conference. Sonja won best poster, and Sabrina won third prize for the best image competition. Well done also to Sazia and Sabrina for their great talks at ANS.

November 2018

Congratulations to Sabrina, who won the 2018 EMBL Australia Postgraduate Symposium SciArt Competition.

Well done to Raquelle, who received a well-deserved First Class Honours for 2018. Great effort Raquelle!

October 2018

Well done to Lachlan, Sabrina and James, all of whom won prizes at the recent Queensland ANZSCDB meeting, held at the Translational Research Institute. Awesome effort from the Piper lab!

Well done again to Sabrina, who recently won a Poster Award at the 9th SBMS International Post-grad Symposium, for her work on the role of NFIX in macrocephaly

September 2018
Well done to Oressia, as well as Lachlan, Tracey, Danyon and Sabrina, as their paper was recently accepted for publication in the prestigious journal, Cerebral Cortex. An awesome effort!
Well done to Sazia, who was selected to present her work at the recent ComBio conference, that was held in Sydney.

August 2018

Well done to Sazia, who has been selected to give an oral presentation at the 2018 ComBio conference, that will be held in Sydney in September.

Congratulations to Oressia, who recently had a paper published in BMC Neuroscience.

July 2018

Well done to James, who passed his M3 this month.

Sabrina has been selected to participate in the 2018 IMNIS MedTech-Pharma Program. Well done Sabrina!

June 2018

Lachlan and Oressia’s paper on NFIX in the adult hippocampus is now published in Development. Well done all!


Maria was awarded a travel bursary to attend the 2018 ISSCS meeting in Melbourne. Well done Maria!

Mike was awarded the Emerging Leader gong from ANZSCDB for 2018


May 2018

 A big welcome to Dr Sazia Sharmin, who joins us as a UQ Development Fellow this month.

 Well done to Raul, who completed his Summer Scholarship with us this month.

 Congratulations to Lachlan and Oressia, whose paper on identifying cell cycle parameters appeared in the latest issue of The Journal of Molecular Histology


 Mike, and the team from First 5 Forever (State Library of Queensland), collaborated on a video promoting early childhood literacy last year (Little Moments, Big Impact). This video recently won an award at the A corto di libri international film contest.  Well done all!


 April 2018

Welcome to Danyon, who is joining us for a PhD. Danyon will be investigating the role of NFI proteins in adult neurogenesis.

A huge well done to Diana, who submitted her PhD thesis on the role of NFIX in ependymal cell formation this month. An excellent effort, that included two first author manuscripts, and a first author book chapter. Thanks also to Tracey for her contribution to getting Di over the line.

Sabrina waltzed through her M2 this month.  The committee were very impressed!  Well done Sabrina

March 2018

Raquelle did a wonderful job for her Honours proposal talk. Well done Raquelle!

A great effort from Elise and Sabrina, who won bursaries to attend the ISDN meeting in Japan later this year.

Thank you to the Brisbane Marketing and Development Board, who awarded Mike a Trailblazer grant to attend the upcoming ISDN meeting in Nara, Japan. It should be a fantastic conference!

Well done to Elise, who sailed through her M2 this month. The committee were very impressed and excited with the presentation.

Feb 2018

Congratulations to Diana, Raul and Tracey, whose work on the role of NFIX in ependymal cell development was recently published in Neural Development


Exciting news for Elise, Sabrina and Maria, who have all been accepted into the upcoming meeting for the International Society for Developmental Neuroscience, which will be held in Nara (Japan) in May. 


Jan 2018

Another sterling effort by Lachlan, Oressia and Sabrina, whose paper on a method for identifying adult neural stem cells in the hippocampus, was recently published in Developmental Dynamics


Well done to Danyon, who was awarded a First Class Honours for his project last year. Danyon is also joining us for his PhD project.

Welcome to Raquelle Ludwig, who is doing Honours with us this year.

Congratulations to Raul, who got married late last year!

The lab was fortunate to get funding from a number of sources last year; thanks to all those who contributed to this, and to the funding bodies for supporting our research.

We received a Discovery Project Grant from the ARC, with our wonderful collaborator, A/Prof Tom Burne. This work aims to analyse the transcriptional regulation of brain size.

In collaboration with A/Prof Helen Cooper, who was the lead investigator, we also obtained a Project Grant from the NHMRC to investigate the development of hydrocephalus.

We were also fortunate enough to obtain an Explorer Award from the Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative to study the role of Usp9x in the development of this disorder.



Well done to Elise on the acceptance of her first publication as lead author. Elise's work, detailing the role of NFIX in spinal cord development, was recently accepted to Developmental Biology. Congratulations also to Lachlan and Danyon, who contributed to this work.

Congratulations to Diana, Lachlan and Oressia, who contributed to a paper recently accepted to Brain and Neuroscience Advances. This work was performed in collaboration with the Richards lab at the QBI. Great job all.

Alex recently had a paper accepted for publication in the journal Methods.  This work details her work on the prediction of target genes from transcription factor binding data. Well done Alex!

The lab team, along with wonderful our collaborators Dr. Fiona Simpson (Diamantina Institute), Dr. Glen Boyle (QIMR) and Dr. Ben Panizza (PA Hospital), was fortunate enough be awarded an Enabling Grant from the Australian Skin and Skin Cancer Research Centre for our work in developing an in vitro model for studying perineural invasion of squamous cell carcinomas of the head and neck. We look forward to working with a PhD student in Fiona’s lab, Priscila Oliveira De Lima, who will be driving this work.


Congratulations to James and Sabrina, both of whom were accepted into training courses run through the Neuroscience School of Advanced Studies. Both got to spend a week in Northern Italy learning about the latest techniques in neuroscience. Sabrina also got a travel scholarship from the Graduate School to fund her trip.

Well done to Lachlan and Tracey, who contributed to a recently published study investigating the expression of NFI proteins within the adult brain. Images from the paper made the front cover of the August 1st 2017 issue of The Journal of Comparative Neurology


Elise recently attended the recent EMBL Australia PhD course held at Monash University. Places were scarce for this, so well done Elise!

Congratulations to Lachlan, who recently graduated with a PhD, and who has taken up a prestigious, 4-year post doctoral position at the Crick Institute in London in the lab of Prof. Francois Guillemot. Lachlan’s most recent work on adult neurogenesis was recently published in Developmental Dynamics


James, Alex and Tracey had their work detailing the expression of NFIX within the postnatal cerebellum published recently in the July 2017 Issue of Brain Structure and Function. A job well done all!


Well done to Mitch, who has finished his PhD and has now moved to the States to do a post doc.  Mitch had two recent papers, which appeared in eBioMedicine and The International Journal of Cancer.



Swati had her final piece of work from the lab published in the February 2017 Issue of The Journal of Molecular Histology. Well done to Swati and Tracey on this manuscript!