Translational Kidney Therapies Group

Translational Kidney Therapies Group photo
2021 Translational Kidney Therapies Group L-R: Ms Virginie Oudin, Emeritus Adjunct Professor Stephen Holdsworth, Dr Poh-Yi Gan, Dr Kim O’Sullivan, Ms Anne Cao Le, Mr Daniel Cheong
Absent: Dr Stephane U-Shane Huang, Dr Md Hasnat

About the Translational Kidney Therapies Group

World-wide kidney disease kills more people than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined. Yet standard of care treatment for kidney disease remains unsatisfactory as it is non-specific and toxic with multiple side effects. Even with treatment, many patients progress to end stage renal disease (ESRD) which requires kidney transplantation or dialysis for survival-costing the health care system over $1 Billion a year. There is a significant need for new targeted therapies with fewer side effects. The Translational Kidney Therapies Group is working on new innovative therapies to target inflammatory kidney diseases such as: ANCA associated vasculitis, glomerulonephritis, and acute kidney injury. The teams particular focus is on modulating the immune system with therapies that reduce inflammation and target the particular immune cells that cause the pathological damage. This approach will reduce off target side effects experienced with non-specific current therapy. The overarching aim of the group is to develop safe, selective and effective therapeutic strategies to fast-track into clinical trials for treatment of kidney disease.

Research Interests

  • Generate tolerogenic mast cells to prevent cardiac ischemia-reperfusion kidney injury (subject of a current Phase I clinical trial lead by Dr Poh-Yi Gan)
  • Inhibiting Neutrophil Extracellular Traps (NETs) to prevent inflammation of the small blood vessels in the kidney
  • Utilizing Human Amniotic Epithelial Cells as treatment to reduce inflammation in the kidney
  • Investigating the dysbiosis of the gut microbiome as a possible cause of autoimmune kidney diseases
  • Modulating inflammation in the kidney via administration of short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs)
  • Induce antigen specific T regulatory cells to treat autoimmune kidney disease (specifically MPO-ANCA associated vasculitis)
  • Determine major kidney therapeutic targets in MPO-ANCA vasculitis patients


  • National Health Medical Research Council (NHMRC), Medical Research Future Fund and the Heart Foundation Vanguard Grant

Meet the team

Group Heads

Research staff

Anne Cao-Le

Daniel Cheong
Md Hasnat
Md Hasnat

Stephanie Huang
Virginie Oudin
Virginie Oudin


Oneli Kulatunge

Jenny Nguyen