2021 Loris and David Rich Postdoctoral Scholar

Peter M.J. Quinn, PhD
Columbia University
New York, New York

After receiving his BSc at The University of Manchester and MSc at Brunel University, Dr. Quinn joined the lab of Dr. Jan Wijnholds at Leiden University, where he completed his PhD.  Subsequently, Dr. Quinn joined Columbia University in New York as a postdoctoral research fellow, where he is mentored by Drs. Stephen H. Tsang and Irene H. Maumenee.

Dr. Quinn’s focus is to provide clinically translatable impact using iPSC-derived retinal organoid-based approaches for the understanding and treatment of retinal degenerative diseases.  He is currently developing gene augmentation and prime editing therapeutics for the amelioration of the phenotypic, histopathological, and molecular changes in inherited retinal disease iPSC-derived retinal organoid models.

“My own experience as a mentor allows me to assess the potential of scientists at various levels of their career; in my view, Dr. Quinn is remarkably gifted,” says Stephen H. Tsang, MD, PhD, Dr. Quinn’s sponsor for the IRRF David and Loris Rich Postdoctoral Scholarship Award.  Dr. Quinn’s project, AAV-mediated Gene Augmentation Therapy for CRB1-Associated Retinal Degeneration, will be explored over the next year. Its primary objective is to develop and evaluate CRB1 (Crumbs holologue-1) gene augmentation therapeutics that can be utilized in a Phase I/IIa combined clinical trial.

Dr. Quinn and his team have hypothesized that the overexpression of CRB1-A or CRB1-B in their cell-type-specific localizations will preserve retinal structure and function.  It is anticipated that the tools developed in the proposal will lead to tangible clinical benefits for patients with retinal disorders.