Higher Degree by Research Candidate
School of Biomedicine
Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences
Lachlan is a PhD candidate at the South Australian Health and Medical Institute (SAHMRI), working under the supervision of Professor Paul Thomas, Dr. Fatwa Adikusuma and Professor Robert Casson, in the Gene Editing Lab. The primary focus of his research is designing gene editing therapeutic strategies for treating autosomal dominant Retinitis Pigmentosa (adRP), the leading cause of inherited genetic blindness, by utilising CRISPR/Cas9 and Prime Editing technology.
Current Research Project: Designing novel mutant specific CRISPR/Cas9 therapeutic strategies towards treating autosomal dominant Retinitis Pigmentosa (adRP)
Retinitis Pigmentosa is the leading cause of retinal degeneration globally, resulting in progressive breakdown of the retinal cells which eventually leads to blindness. The largest proportion of Retinitis Pigmentosa causative mutations are autosomal dominant (heterozygous for the disease allele) and are attractive targets for genetic therapeutic intervention. Utilising CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing, the aims of my project are to specifically target common autosomal dominant Retinitis Pigmentosa (adRP) causative genes, RHO and NR2E3, in hope of rescuing the disease phenotype.
With the generation of preclinical genetic models, the aim is to target the disease genetically by either Knock-Out (KO) of the mutant allele and/or correction of the mutant allele into the wild-type sequence utilising a range of CRISPR/Cas9 technologies including Prime Editing, to hence prevent further retinal degeneration.
Awards and Achievements
Date Type Title Institution Name Country Amount 2023 Award The Florey Medical Research Foundation (Applied) The University of Adelaide Australia - 2022 Scholarship Master of Philosophy (No Honours) Scholarship The University of Adelaide Australia - 2021 Award Outstanding Academic Achievement The University of Adelaide Australia - 2020 Scholarship Summer Research Scholarship The University of Adelaide Australia - 2020 Award Outstanding Academic Achievement The University of Adelaide Australia - 2019 Award Outstanding Academic Achievement The University of Adelaide Australia -
Language Competency English Can read, write, speak, understand spoken and peer review
Date Institution name Country Title 2019 - 2021 The University of Adelaide Australia Bachelor of Science (Advanced)
Date Role Membership Country 2020 - ongoing Member Golden Key International Honour Society Australia
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