Senior Research Officer, Brain Tumour Group, Children’s Cancer Institute
Zero Childhood Cancer Preclinical Brain Tumour Team Coordinator, Children’s Cancer Institute
Conjoint Lecturer, School of Women’s & Children’s Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of New South Wales
Dr Maria Tsoli graduated with First Class Honours in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of New South Wales in Sydney in 1999 and received PhD with High Distinction in Molecular Modelling and Tumour Biology from the University of Duisburg-Essen, in Germany in 2004. After her PhD she worked as a postdoctoral scientist in the field of Cancer Cachexia Syndrome at Anzac Research Institute in Sydney. In 2009 she accepted a postdoctoral position at the Sanford-Burnham Institute for Medical research in San Diego, USA where her research efforts focused in the fields of Colorectal Cancer and Paediatric Bone Disorders. In 2011 she joined the Children’s Cancer Institute where she has been has working as a senior scientist and managing the Brain Tumour Group under the mentorship of the Paediatric Oncologist A/Prof David Ziegler (Sydney Children’s Hospital). She is the lead scientist responsible for establishing state of the art techniques for research in Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Gliomas (DIPG) and the development of DIPG patient-derived xenograft models (PDX). Key achievements include the (a) establishment of primary glioma neurospheres (DIPG, glioblastoma, medulloblastoma) and orthotopic animal models from paediatric overseas and Australian patient DIPG biopsies/ autopsies; (b) establishment of single-agent and combination high-throughput screening performed on primary DIPG neurosphere-forming cells; (c) development of novel and targeted therapies against aggressive paediatric brain tumours.