Retinal Biology Research Laboratory

Lab head: Tailoi Chan-Ling
Location: Anderson Stuart Building, Camperdown Campus

Lab members: T Chan-Ling (head)

The retina in developmental neurobiology and neuropathology

Primary supervisor: Tailoi Ling

Our lab is currently supported by the National Health and Medical Research Council, International Science Linkages, The Financial Markets Foundation for Children, The Baxter Charitable Foundation, The Macular Vision Support Society and the Rebecca Cooper Medical Research Foundation. Our experimental approach is to use the retina, as a model of the brain, to further our understanding of the developmental biology of CNS blood vessels and glial cells (in particular, the astrocytes and oligodendrocytes which are critical to the functioning of neurones). While some of the projects are predominantly of a basic nature, others have clinical relevance to sight threatening retinopathies such as Retinopathy of Prematurity and Age-Related Macular Degeneration, the leading causes of blindenss in infants and aging respectively. The accessibility of the eye for experimental manipulation allow studies that lead to insights into various disease processes that affect the CNS, in particular Retinopathy of Prematurity, Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) and Spinal cord injury.

We have a number of existing collaborations with the Departments of Pathology at Sydney University and The Australian National University; The John Curtin School of Medical Research - Division of Neuroscience as well as collaborations with a number of leading laboratories overseas. Recent studies have contributed insights into the cellular and molecular processes in the formation and remodelling of CNS blood vessels. Other studies have contributed to the understanding of the differentiation of cells of the astrocyte lineage in vivo.

Our lab currently has 5 Postgraduate students, one post-doctoral fellow, two part-time research associates and myself.

Two current projects include:

  1. Stemming vision loss with stem cells
  2. Characterisation and application of human neural precursor cells in cell-based therapy
Current projects on offer:
  1. Application of heamatopoietic stem cells in the treatment of ARMD
  2. Developmental neurobiology of cells of the oligodendrocytic and astrocytic lineages
  3. Application of neural stem cells in regenerative medicine
  4. Cellular and molecular processes in the formation of the human retina and choroid

Our lab is keen to attract talented students interested to pursue a career in biomedical research, particularly students interested to undertake a PhD candidature and opportunities exists for exchanges with collaborating national and international laboratories in USA/Germany/Italy/New Zealand/Ireland.

Please feel free to email or phone to have a chat about the possibilities.

Discipline: Anatomy & Histology