Dr | Senior Research Officer+61 7 3362 0406
Dr Hong You is a molecular parasitologist and senior research officer (SRO-6) at QIMR Berghofer in the molecular parasitology laboratory. She is also an adjunct senior lecturer at the School of Veterinary Science, University of Queensland (UQ). After completing her PhD study at UQ in 2010, her research has been focused on the identification / characterisation of vaccine or drug targets against schistosome infections by exploiting new, cutting-edge technologies for gene functional studies including CRISPR-based systems (CRISPR/Cas9 and CRISPR interference/activation), transcriptomics, proteomics, and RNA interference. Her research also extended the development of next-generation point-of-care diagnostics tools (by using CRISPR-Cas12/13 system) for schistosomiasis and other helminthic diseases. Dr You has accumulated rich experience in schistosome developmental biology, immunology associated with parasite-host interactions and functional genomic studies of schistosomes. She has acquired skills in performing immunological assessments of vaccine efficacy in animal vaccine/challenge trials both in the laboratory and in the field.
2014-current: Senior Research Officer at QIMR Berghofer;
2016-current: Adjunct Senior Lecturer at the School of Veterinary Science, University of Queensland
2013-2017: NHMRC Early Career Fellowship
2010-2013: Research Officer, QIMR Berghofer
2006-2007: Associate Professor, Xinjiang Veterinary Research Institute, China
1994-2006: Assistant Research Fellow, Xinjiang Veterinary Research Institute, China
Hong’s research has been focused on biology/molecular parasitology (Schistosomes, Echinococcus) in the areas of identification and characterization of novel/unknown genes as vaccine / drug targets, immunological assessment of vaccine/drug efficacy in animal models and natural hosts in the field. However, a major challenge in the schistosomiasis research community is the lack of suitable tools to effectively characterise schistosome gene products as potential new drug/vaccine targets. By introducing the CRISPR-mediated technology, a powerful gene editing tool, into schistosomes, Dr You recently developed a CRISPR/Cas9-based editing system for genomic functional study. For the first time, she has successfully established CRISPR interference/activation approaches in schistosome providing effective tools for improved gene functional study by selectively perturbing/enhancing gene expression, with the potential of the approach to be extended to the study of other parasitic helminths and used as a powerful drug screen system. By further exploring CRISPR-Cas12/13 diagnostic platforms, Dr You has also developed for the first time, new generation point-of-care diagnostics tools for schistosomiasis, which are sensitive, cost-effective, field-friendly diagnostics approaches for future wide-scale application to other parasitic neglected tropical diseases globally.
2005-present: Australian Society for Parasitology.
2018 -present: QIMR Berghofer Postdoctoral Committee, member.