Stem Cell Disease Modelling

Research Overview

Our laboratory focuses on the study of human pluripotent stem cells for modelling neurodegenerative diseases.

The difficulty in obtaining brain or ocular tissue from living people is a major barrier to developing new treatments for neurodegenerative disease. We can now generate stem cells from adult tissue, and these “induced pluripotent stem cells” (iPSCs) represent a powerful disease modelling tool. Generating iPSCs directly from patients allows cells to be differentiated into specific cells of interest for disease modelling, drug screening, and understanding of fundamental pathogenic mechanisms.

We differentiate iPSCs into various cell types of the nervous system, as monolayers or as organoids. Using these cells, we model age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, inherited retinal dystrophies and optic neuropathies, in order to establish the molecular events leading to disease progression and aspects of neurodegeneration. We also use gene editing technology for the correction of monogenic diseases of the retina and the optic nerve.


Dr Grace Lidgerwood, Research Fellow

Dr Damian Hernandez, Research Fellow

Dr Maciej Daniszewski, Research Fellow

Ms Lerna Jurdukian, Senior Research Support Officer


Associate Professor Joseph Powell, Garvan Institute of Medical Research

Professor Alex Hewitt, University of Tasmania

Professor Robyn Guymer, Centre for Eye Research Australia


National Health & Medical Research Council

Medical Research Future Funds

Australian Research Council

Dementia Australia Research Foundation

Yulgilbar Alzheimer’s Research Program

DHB Foundation

Research Outcomes

Professor Alice Pèbay on Google Scholar

Research Publications

View Professor Alice Pèbay's latest PubMed publications here

Research Projects

For project inquiries, contact our research group head.

Faculty Research Themes


School Research Themes

Cancer in Medicine

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact Professor Alice Pèbay

Department / Centre


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