Dr Lachlan Rash, UQ SBMS


Acidosis occurs in pathological conditions related to ischemia, trauma, tumours and infection and is a hallmark of inflammation, during which the extracellular pH can reach as low as 5.5. Different cell types exposed to acidosis respond in different ways; sensory neurons and immune cells are sensitised/activated and CNS neurons can be suppressed or fatally hyper-activated. How particular cell types sense and respond to acidosis and the immediate signalling mechanisms involved are not well understood. Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are primary pH sensors in mammals and are expressed in neuronal, immune, tumour and endo/epithelial cells. ASICs are present, upregulated and activated in all of the pathological conditions mentioned above. Indeed, interruption of ASIC function in these conditions has provided proof of concept for ASICs as therapeutic targets in a number of common but poorly managed conditions. This talk will cover our research efforts exploring the therapeutic potential of ASIC inhibitors in pain and stroke

Speaker bio:

Dr Lachlan Rash is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland. Following completion of his PhD in the Department of Pharmacology at Monash University, Lachlan spent a three years at the Institute for Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology in the south of France working on the discovery and characterisation of venom peptides that act on acid-sensing ion channels and voltage gated sodium channels. Dr Rash joined UQ at the Institute for Molecular Biosciences on an INSERM/NHMRC post-doctoral fellowship in 2005, where he was an research only academic for 11 years before joining the School of Biomedical Sciences as a Senior Lecturer in pharmacology in March 2016. At SBMS he leads the Ion Channel Pharmacology lab which uses animal venoms and traditional medicines as a source of novel drugs to help understand the structure, function and modulation of various ligand and voltage-gated ion channels, how this changes under pathological conditions such as acidosis and hence, their role in pain, inflammation and neurological disorders


About Seminar Series

The School of Pharmacy Seminar Series involves regular formal presentations of high-quality scholarly work with broad appeal.

The wider School community is invited to attend, including academic and professional staff, special guests, visitors, as well as HDR, postgraduate, masters and honours students.

Seminars are held on Fridays from 12pm–1pm in room 5034 in the Pharmacy Australia Centre of Excellence, 20 Cornwall St Woolloongabba (next to TRI and the PA Hospital).

Confirmed 2021 seminars

Date Presenter
12-1pm, Friday 19 March
(PACE R5034 and Zoom)
Professor Paul Clarke, Director Diamantina Institute        
12-1pm, Friday 16 April
(Zoom only)
Associate Professor Francine Marques, Monash University     
12-1pm, Friday 23 April
(Zoom only)
Associate Professor Ben Colagiuri, Sydney University 
12-1pm, Friday 7 May
(Zoom only)
Dr Laurence Cheung, Curtin University
12-1pm, Friday 30 July
(location TBC)
Dr Gary Chan, UQ CYSUR
12-1pm, Friday 13 August
(Zoom only)
Professor Sanjay Garg, University of South Australia
12-1pm, Friday 3 September
(PACE R5034 and Zoom)
Associate Professor Michael Barras, UQ Pharmacy
12-1pm 10 September
(Online via Zoom)

Professor Josephine Forbes, Mater Research


12-1pm, Friday 17 September
(PACE R5034 and Zoom)

Professor Nigel McMillan, Program Director: Infectious Diseases and Immunology, Menzies Health Institute QLD, Griffith University

12-1pm, Friday 24 September
(Location TBC)
Denuja Karunakaran, IMB Fellow, Institute for Molecular Bioscience (IMB), UQ


Pharmacy Australia Centre of Excellence, 20 Cornwall St, Woolloongabba