Dr Amanda Dalby PhD

Dr Amanda Dalby

Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences
Research Fellow

Contact details

Address
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B15 2TT
UK

Amanda has been in the position of Research Fellow in the group of Professor Steve Watson since the start of 2018, in the Institute of Cardiovascular Research. During this time she has worked on several projects which have involved looking at a mutation in the gene GNE, which effects platelet clearance, leading to a condition known as thrombocytopenia. She is also looking at the frequency of a mutation found in the gene GP6 in the general Chilean population, which causes bleeding in some instances. Her main project currently is looking at the mechanism of fibrinogen uptake into megakaryocytes, using advanced light sheet microscopy. This project builds on Amanda’s previous experience in the derivation of megakaryocytes from human pluripotent stem cells.

Qualifications

  • PhD in Haematology, University of Cambridge, 2017
  • MRes in Cardiovascular Science, University of Cambridge, 2013
  • BSc (Hons) in Human Genetics, Newcastle University, 2012

Biography

Amanda’s current project involves using light sheet microscopy to try and understand more about how the process of fibrinogen uptake occurs in live megakaryocytes, in real time. Knocking-out a number of genes believed to play an important role in the uptake of fibrinogen in megakaryocytes, we can also look at how this process is altered in disease. We can even begin to explore if this mechanism of uptake can be useful for delivering proteins or drugs to platelets produced in vitro.

Amanda completed her PhD in Haematology in 2017, under the supervision of Dr Cedric Ghevaert, at the University of Cambridge. This PhD focused on deriving megakaryocytes and platelets from human induced pluripotent stem cells, using a technique known as ‘Forward Programming’. With a focus on producing platelets in vitro for use in transfusion medicine, Amanda produced an inducible stem cell line capable of forward programming, using genome editing techniques. This work will help to facilitate the future transition from small-scale lab production to large-scale clinical production of platelets. This inducible stem cell line is also an important tool for researchers interested in understanding more about how megakaryocytes develop and mature to form functional platelets. Using this stem cell line and genetic engineering approaches, such as CRISPR/Cas9, offers a powerful approach to interrogate genes of interest believed to play a critical role in the development and function of megakaryocytes.

Amanda is a STEM ambassador and also tutors an A-Level student in Biology through The Access Project, aimed at helping to get underprivileged students into higher education. Amanda received several awards during her PhD, including two best student speaker prizes at conferences and best PhD poster at the L’Oréal-UNESCO for Women in Science Awards, in 2017. As part of a public engagement initiative, Amanda and colleagues were filmed answering questions posed by the public surrounding their research. For this, they were nominated for a public engagement award by the Cambridge Stem Cell Institute.

Research

Main research interests:

  • The development and maturation of megakaryocytes and platelets, and understanding how gene mutations identified in patients with bleeding disorders affect this process.

Research Groups:

Other activities

  • Committee member for Team Science (2018-present)
  • Head of the Platelet Group Green Impacts Lab (2018-present)
  • STEM Ambassador (2018-present)

Publications

View all publications in research portal