Epigenetics and Development

Epigenetics and Development

Microscope image of embryo in two-cell stage
Researchers in our division study how cell growth and differentiation is regulated in normal development and in disease.

There are many links between abnormal development and disease. For example, the molecular mechanisms underlying the rapid, but regulated, growth of cells during embryonic development are frequently deregulated in cancer. Our aim is to utilise this knowledge to identify potential new targets for therapy.

We are particularly interested in the packaging of genetic material (DNA) with proteins in the cell nucleus, which influences how cells use different genes. The packaging of DNA can also be disrupted in disease. 

Diseases of interest include intellectual disability disorders, prenatal stroke, blood stem cell failure, muscular dystrophy and cancer.

Health impact

Cancers: leukaemia, lymphoma

Development and ageing: congenital diseases, epigenetics, FSHD, heart disease and stroke, Prader Willi syndrome, intellectual disabilities, blood stem cell function, KAT6A syndrome, Say-Barber-Biesecker-Young-Simpson syndrome, genitopatellar syndrome

Other: bioinformatics

Division news

Division heads

Associate Professor Marnie Blewitt

Associate Professor Anne Voss

Lab heads

Dr Leigh Coultas

Associate Professor Joan Heath

Associate Professor Matt Ritchie

Dr Samir Taoudi

Associate Professor Tim Thomas

Division coordinators

Dr Tanya de Jong-Curtain

Fiona McGrath