The Neurogenomics Laboratory investigates and validates genome-wide transcriptomic data to provide insight into how the human brain functions. For this it employ cutting-edge technologies such as:
- induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs)
- next generation sequencing (NGS)
- advanced bioinformatic analyses.
Understanding how the human brain works has historically been restricted due to the lack of a suitable human model and the ability to interrogate the entire transcribed human genome. Recent innovations in iPSC technology have permitted an unprecedented view into the biology of human cellular function, as many cell types – including brain cells – can be derived from these ‘stem’ cells.
The emergence of powerful bioinformatic capabilities advanced the field of genomics and transcriptomics over the last decade. Using a combination of iPSC and NGS technologies, we are exploring how mRNAs, long non-coding RNAs and small RNAs combine to underpin human cognitive advancement and psychiatric disease.
Some of the following important and exciting questions in human biology using the brain as a model are goals that the laboratory attempt to answer:
- What makes us human?
- How has newly evolved regulatory sophistication occurred?
- How can we understand and treat psychiatric disease?