Dr. Katie Ayers
Dr Katie Ayers is a team leader at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI) in Melbourne, Australia. Her team studies the genetic and molecular mechanisms underlying gonad development and Disorders of Sex Development (DSD) in humans. In 2016, with Prof. Andrew Sinclair, she published a seminal paper in Genome Biology showing that a DSD targeted gene panel improved diagnosis rates from 13% to 40%, leading to the introduction of this gene panel as a clinical diagnostic test at the Victorian Clinical Genetics Services. She is now using genomic sequencing technologies and functional analysis to identify and characterise new DSD genes in undiagnosed patients. She is also working closely with Prof. Melissa Little to develop a novel method to differentiate human embryonic gonadal cells from pluripotent stem.