About Dr. Dinculescu and the Lab
Dr. Dinculescu received her PhD in Biochemistry from University of Florida in 2002. Her goals are to develop effective treatments for retinal diseases to prevent or delay the course of blindness in patients. Her main research is focused on Usher syndrome type 3 (USH3), an inherited condition leading to progressive hearing loss and retinal degeneration, caused by mutations in the Clarin-1 (CLRN1) gene. In her recent studies, she provided evidence that CLRN1 in adult retina is produced by Müller glia in several distinct species, including humans. This discovery opens new directions towards future mechanistic and therapeutic studies to prevent vision loss caused by CLRN1 mutations.
Our lab is developing new USH3 models that will contribute greatly to the advancement of our understanding of this disease, as well as our ability to treat it. Our goals are to understand the roles of CLRN1 protein in Müller glia and how its omission specifically impacts the postnatal and adult retina, to develop safe AAV-based gene-therapy tools for preventing blindness in USH3 patients.