Our laboratory at The University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia, is trying to unravel the molecular mechanisms that drive cardiac regeneration. Some of the projects currently being pursued in our laboratory include:

 

Post-natal control of cardiac gene regulatory networks.

Epigenetic modifications are critical for the precise temporal regulation of gene expression during heart development. We are trying to map the changes in the genomic landscape during post-natal heart development to identify the molecular drivers of cardiac regeneration during early developmental stages.

 

Modelling human heart development using human cardiac organoids.

Recent advances in stem cell sciences and tissue engineering are providing unparalleled opportunities to generate human heart tissues in a dish. We are using human cardiac organoids to understand the mechanisms that regulate the developmental maturation of human heart muscle.

 

Functional genomic screens for cardiovascular drug discovery.

We are also applying unbiased screening approaches to identify novel therapeutic candidates for cardiac regeneration in human cardiac organoids.

Current projects

Targeted direct reprogramming of adult cardiac fibroblasts to functional cardiomyocytes

2016-2018, NHMRC Project Grant, Collaboration: Prof Justin Cooper-White, Dr Enzo Porrello, Prof Ernst Wolvetang
 

Examining an extracellular matrix regulator required for cardiovascular development

2016-2019, NHMRC Project Grant, Collaboration: Dr Kelly Smith, Dr Mathias Francois, AProf Carol Wicking, Dr Enzo Porrello, Dr Ben Hogan
 

Regulation of endogenous heart regeneration by an anti-fibrotic microRNA

2015-2017, NHMRC Project Grant, Dr Enzo Porello, Dr James Hudson
 

Regulation of heart development and regeneration by DNA methylation

2015-2017, NHMRC Project Grant, Dr Enzo Porello, Dr James Hudson
 

Discovery of novel heart failure therapeutics via development of a next generation therapeutic screening platform: Force-generating human heart tissue micro-arrays

2014-2016, NHMRC Project Grant, Dr James Hudson

Recently completed projects

Chemosensory receptors in heart

2012-2015, National Heart Foundation of Australia

 

Uncovering the role of genomic dark matter in heart development and regeneration

2014-2015, UQ Foundation Research Excellence Awards - DVC(R) Funding