I am a postdoc at the University of Cambridge studying a recently identified mammary epithelial cell fate regulator, BCL11A to specifically target triple negative breast cancer. I undertook my undergraduate degree at Swinburne University which included an Honours project at the Defence Science and Technology Organisation. I did my PhD training with Drs Ashwini Chand and Colin Clyne, Prince Henry’s Institute of Medical Research (now the Hudson Institute of Medical Research) where I focused on the role of LRH-1 in mammary gland development and cancer (2010-2014).
I then moved to Western Australia to undertake a short postdoc with Dr Caryn Elsegood, Curtin University and Prof George Yeoh, UWA where I studied the role of the immune system on liver progenitor cell initiation and maintenance (2014-2015).
In Feb 2015, I started my postdoc with Dr Walid Khaled at the University of Cambridge. Here, I aim to characterise the role of BCL11A in lung squamous carcinoma (Lazarus et al, Nat Comms 2018) and triple negative breast cancer (Pensa and Lazarus et al, Cell Stem Cell, under review) using elegant mouse models, proteomics and genomic approches.
In addition to my academic interests, I am passionate about various aspects of science communication. I have previously organised the inaugural Hughes Hall Three Minute Thesis competition in 2016 along with Aisling Redmond, Wolfram Gruhn and Carole Sargent. I also welcome questions from PhD students about ‘life after a PhD’.