*Seminar Series: IMB Seminar Series
*Location: QBP Auditorium, Bld 80
*Date: 19/05/2017
*Time: 12:30

Speaker #1 details
*Title of talk: Genetic dissection of cardiac form and function
*Speaker's name: Dr Kelly Smith
*Speaker's organisation: Institute for Molecular Bioscience, UQ
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Talk Abstract: The heart is essential for our survival and forms during embryonic development. It begins functioning just 22 days after the human egg is fertilised and function is necessary to support the continued growth of the developing embryo. We have a sound understanding of the major anatomical stages of heart development however our knowledge of the genetic and cellular events orchestrating its morphogenesis is incomplete. Focussing primarily on the early stages of heart development, we utilise the zebrafish model for its genetic tractability to identify novel regulators of cardiac development. By performing detailed phenotypic analyses, investigating the function of affected genes and placing these genes in genetic pathways, new insights into the genetics and cellular remodelling required for heart development can be learned. Whilst exciting for discovery's sake, this fundamental knowledge is also essential for understanding inherited cardiac disease and is already applied to tissue engineering technologies.
Speaker's bio: Kelly Smith is a Lab head at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland. Her research group investigates the early stages of heart development, seeking to identify and understand the function of novel genetic and cellular regulators of heart form and function.

Kelly received her PhD in 2005 from the University of Melbourne studying gastrointestinal physiology using mouse models and tissue culture models. She then moved to the Hubrecht Institute in the Netherlands where she undertook postdoctoral training in the laboratory of Jeroen Bakkers studying cardiac development using the zebrafish model. Here she learned large-scale forward and reverse genetics screening approaches, examining both animal models and patient cohorts to identify novel genes and mutations in cardiac development and disease. She returned to Australia in 2010, working under the mentorship of Associate Professor Carol Wicking as an IMB Fellow. In 2013, Kelly began her independent research group at the IMB. Since her move to independence, Kelly and her lab have created numerous zebrafish mutants with cardiac defects and, by applying live imaging, transgenesis and genetic epistasis experimentation, are identifying new mechanisms of cardiovascular development.

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Other Details:
*Host name: Associate Professor Carol Wicking
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*Host email: imbevents@uq.edu.au