Stem Cell Medicine

We are driving the development of therapies for currently incurable diseases, including kidney, heart and skeletal muscle diseases, leukemia, brain cancer and respiratory diseases.

Finding new treatments for currently incurable conditions.

Watch as Charlotte asks Professor Enzo Porrello about the impact stem cell research has on child health.

Watch as Charlotte asks Professor Enzo Porrello about the impact stem cell research has on child health.

Our research

Using cutting-edge stem cell technologies, we seek to understand the causes of childhood diseases, screen for new treatments and advance regenerative medicine.

Our researchers are experts in stem cells, gene editing, transcriptomics, phosphoproteomics and bioengineering technologies that can be used to model complex disease mechanisms and develop new stem cell-based therapies.

The research area encompasses groups investigating diseases such as kidney, heart, blood, skeletal muscle and respiratory diseases, neurodevelopmental disorders and childhood cancers. Our Stem Cell Ethics and Policy group contributes to the ethical, legal and social frameworks of stem cell research and related technologies.

Underpinning this expertise and driving innovation are our state-of-the-art stem cell facilities: the iPSC Derivation and Gene Editing Facility and Stem Cell-Based Drug Discovery Facility.

Many researchers in the Stem Cell Medicine theme are part of the Melbourne node of the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Stem Cell Medicine (reNEW), an international collaboration that will pave the way for future stem cell-based treatments.

reNEW is an international consortium of three leading research institutions: the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands, and Murdoch Children’s Research Institute in Australia. reNEW strives to advance a new generation of effective and safe stem cell-based therapies, built on a global collaborative network of excellence in targeted biomedical research.

Stem Cell Medicine groups

Blood Development

Deciphering blood cell forming to advance treatments for children with blood disease.

Explore Blood Development

Functional Phosphoproteomics

Our laboratory studies cell signalling to understand the driving forces behind complex human diseases.

Explore Functional Phosphoproteomics

Heart Disease

Improving outcomes for children with complex forms of Childhood Heart Disease (CHD).

Explore Heart Disease

Heart Regeneration

Improving regenerative therapies for congenital and acquired forms of heart disease.

Explore Heart Regeneration

Immune Development

Developing new treatments for respiratory diseases and autoimmune conditions.

Explore Immune Development

Kidney Regeneration

Improving treatments for kidney diseases and developing replacement organs (mini kidneys).

Explore Kidney Regeneration

Muscle Bioengineering

Using stem cells to generate human bioengineered muscle, both skeletal muscle and heart muscle

Explore Muscle Bioengineering

Neural Stem Cell

Using advanced pluripotent stem cell-derived 3D organoid models of the human brain.

Explore Neural Stem Cell


Understanding the gene regulatory networks that control and are controlled by Dlx genes.

Explore Neuro-oncology

Stem Cell Ethics & Policy

Studying stem cell research's ethical, legal and social implications and related technologies.

Explore Stem Cell Ethics & Policy

Transcriptomics & Bioinformatics

Mining our genomic information, to uncover the underlying genetic causes of congenital diseases, such as congenital heart disease (CHD).

Explore Transcriptomics & Bioinformatics