Human Reproduction Unit, Sydney Centre for Developmental and Rgenerative Medicine

Lab head: Chris O'Neill
Location: E25 - Royal North Shore Hospital

This laboratory studies the control of mammalian fertilisation and early embryo development, with emphasis on the regulation of the growth and development of the early mammalian embryo and the formation of embryonic stem cells. This laboratory aims are to foster safe and effective use of assisted reproductive technologies and embryonic stem cell therapy.

Major research foci are:

  • The regulation of expression of essential embryonic growth factors, with particular emphasis being to identify the fertilisation events responsible for triggering their production


  • The mechanisms by which embryos respond to these growth factors


  • The consequences of assisted reproductive technologies (such as IVF) on these basic physiological processes


  • The processes that lead to normal formation of embryonic stem cell lineages and their pluripotency


  • The safety assessment of assisted reproductive technologies and stem cell therapy


Lab members: Chris O'Neill (head), Hugh Morhan (Fellow), Yan Li (Fellow), Lakshi Ganeshan (Fellow), Xing Jin (Fellow), Greg Mulhearn (Lab Manager), Sabina Testa (Research Assistant) PhD Students: Rachel Gentles, Selcen Celik, Jennifer Wong, Stepen Gao,
Funding: NHMRC and ARC


Stem cells

Primary supervisor: Christopher O'Neill

  1. Gene-directed differentiation of embryonic stem cell to insulin-secreting cells for treatment of diabetes.
  2. Epigenetic events required for the formation of induced-pluripotent stem cells

Discipline: Physiology