Stefka Tasheva

Stefka Tasheva

School of Biomedicine

Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences

Eligible to supervise Masters and PhD (as Co-Supervisor) - email supervisor to discuss availability.


Dr Stefka Mincheva Tasheva
2017-present NHMRC Grant-Funded Researcher A, University of Adelaide
2015 - 2016 Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Queensland, Brisbane
2011 - 2014 Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Lleida, Spain.

Research Interests:
Neuroscience, Behaviour and Brain Health Cell Biology Cell Development, Proliferation and Death Cellular Nervous System Central Nervous System Peripheral Nervous System

Dr. Stefka Mincheva-Tasheva is a postdoctoral researcher in Prof Paul Thomas’ Genome Editing laboratory at The University of Adelaide. Her research interest and expertise centers around the identification and characterisation of the molecular mechanisms governing physiological processes during nervous system development and disease.

Dr. Tasheva completed her Ph.D. in Health Sciences in 2011 at the University of Lleida (UdL), Spain. Her dissertation explored the signalling pathways controlling motor neuron survival during spinal cord development and in Spinal Muscular Atrophy. During her first postdoctoral training at UdL, she contributed to the characterisation of the molecular basis for Friedreich ataxia and discovered a new therapeutic target to restore the symptoms of this progressive disease. Then Stefka undertook a second post-doctoral position at The University of Queensland where she investigated the role of cellular tight junctions in Type II Diabetes.

Dr. Tasheva joined Prof. Thomas’ lab in 2017 and her ongoing research expands on animal disease modelling for identification of the molecular mechanism and therapeutic strategies for a very intriguing epileptic syndrome called PCDH19-Clustering Epilepsy (PCDH19-CE). The objective of her project is to investigate the possibilities for using gene therapy to treat the disease. To this end, she together with Prof Thomas have developed a unique Pcdh19 mouse model that mimics the genetic changes that cause epilepsy. Using this preclinical model, she is working to identify when pathological changes first occur in the brain of the affected females and whether these lesions are reversible and, if so, the latest developmental time point by which genetic intervention must occur.

Title: Genetic therapy- a battle against PCDH19-Clustering Epilepsy

Funding scheme: FND001545: PCDH19 Syndrome Research Grants, Italy ($163.000)

Investigators: PI-Thomas P & co-PI-Tasheva S

Reporting dates: Oct 2023 to Oct 2025

Description: Our research project aims to develop innovative treatment strategies for PCDH19-Clustering Epilepsy (PCDH19-CE). T To develop new treatments for PCDH19-CE, we need to understand when and how brain development is altered in affected individuals. Using this information, we aim to test a new treatment strategy for PCDH19-CE based on elimination of the causative gene. These studies will provide a platform to develop new therapeutic options for patients with PCDH19-CE. Ultimately, our research has the potential to revolutionize the treatment landscape for this disease, offering hope for improved outcomes and a better quality of life for affected individuals.

 

Title: Investigating proof-of-concept for genetic therapy of PCDH19-Clustering Epilepsy using preclinical mouse models

Funding Scheme: Channel 7 Children's Research Foundation ($100,000)

Investigators: Thomas P & Tasheva S

Reporting dates: 2024-2025

 

Travel Grant Award S.Tasheva ($1200)

Funder Name: Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences (School of Biomedicine), The University of Adelaide

Reporting Dates: Feb 2024
 

Travel Award S.Tasheva ($2600)

Funder Name: School of Biomedicine, The University of Adelaide

Reporting Dates: Sep 2023

 

Research Travel Award S.Tasheva ($3000)

Funder Name: Faculty of Health and Medical Science, University of Adelaide

Reporting Dates: May 2023

 

Title: Investigating the molecular pathology for PCDH19-Girls Clustering Epilepsy

Funding scheme: FND000667: National Health and Medical Research Council -Ideas Grants ($935.000)

Investigators: CIA-Thomas P & CIB-Tasheva S

Reporting dates: 01 Jan 2020 to 31 Dec 2023

Description: Changes in the PCDH19 gene are a relatively common cause of epilepsy. To better understand the basis of this disorder, we will use mouse models that mimic the genetic changes and symptoms of PCDH19-GCE. We will perform careful analysis of brain development in these models to determine the primary cause of this condition. This study will define how brain changes lead to epilepsy and facilitate development of new treatments.

 

Title: Exploring proof of concept for genetic therapy of PCDH19-girls clustering epilepsy using preclinical models

Funding scheme: ORG120981: PCDH19 Alliance Research Grant, USA ($110.000)

Investigators: PI-Thomas P & co-PI Tasheva S

Reporting dates: 01 Sep 2019 to 01 Sep 2020

Description: Changes in a brain gene called PCDH19 are a relatively common cause of epilepsy with intellectual disability. An unusual feature of this condition is that genetic changes in PCDH19 affect girls while male carriers are spared. It is thought that mosaic activity of the PCDH19 gene (coexistence of PCDH19-expressing and -null cells) in the developing brain is the cause of the disease pathology. Using this pre-clinical model we will identify when pathological changes first occur in the brain of the affected females. Importantly, we will also determine whether the pathological lesion is reversible and, if so, the latest developmental time point by which genetic intervention must occur.

 

 

 

 

 

 


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