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Cardiovascular Development and Disease: Discovery science to translational applications

Dr Nathan Palpant, Institution: The University of Queensland

2017 Future Leader Fellowship

Years funded: 2018-2021


Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death worldwide.

Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) provide a unique vantage point into fundamental mechanisms underlying the biological complexity of development and disease.

Dr Nathan Palpant’s research program, established at the University of Queensland’s IMB in November 2015, uses hPSCs to study the molecular basis of lineage choices in cardiovascular biology.

Dr Palpant’s research program has three major aims building on his expertise. Dr Palpant’s group studies gene expression changes of thousands of single cells transiting through cardiovascular development to understand how cells differentiate through step-wise transitions in cell identity.

We use genetic gain and loss of function studies to reveal the networks controlling cardiovascular tissue differentiation and disease.

Dr Palpant is additionally leading a translational research effort that interfaces with clinician-researchers at The Prince Charles Hospital to develop disease models and novel therapeutics for heart disease.

The outcomes of this research program will bridge discoveries in genomics and cell biology with novel drugs discovery, stem cell disease models, and preclinical models of heart disease.

Dr Palpant’s research team is connected with strong national and international collaborations to cover an interdisciplinary research effort. With a strong research environment at UQ and the Critical Care Research Group at The Prince Charles Hospital, the program has a strong framework for impactful health-driven outcomes.

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