Dr Lachlan Gray is a Senior Research Officer working in the HIV Neuropathogeneis Laboratory at the Burnet Institute. He trained as a molecular virologist and has research interests in HIV entry, replication, and latency. More specifically his current research addresses the following areas:
How HIV enters cells of the immune system with a focus on HIV entry into brain cells
How HIV replicates within brain cells
The role of HIV brain infection in the establishment of viral reservoirs and implications for HIV cure research
Evaluating the use of HIV cure drugs in the context of brain infection
Effects of antiviral drugs that target virus entry in the brain
How HIV infection of the brain leads to HIV dementia
Lachlan Gray completed his Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Melbourne, Australia, majoring in Virology, Immunology and Genetics in 2002. In 2003 he undertook his Honours, studying at the Burnet Institute, Melbourne, Australia, under the supervision of Prof. Paul Gorry, analyzing viral evolution in the Sydney Blood Bank Cohort of HIV-1 long-term non-progressors. Lachlan worked as a Research Assistant (RA) in the Gorry lab in 2004 contributing to various projects. Following his RA year, he commenced his PhD in 2005 under the supervision of Prof. Paul Gorry and A/Prof. Melissa Churchill, also based at the Burnet Institute. The title of his thesis was “Viral determinants of HIV-1 neurotropism and neurovirulence”. Following completion of his PhD in 2009 he commenced a Postdoctoral position at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia in 2010 under the supervision of Prof. Steve Wesselingh. He’s since returned to the Burnet in his current role as Senior Research Officer, working within the Churchill Lab. His postdoctoral studies mainly concentrate on HIV infection of the CNS and its importance to the establishment of a viral reservoir in the CNS and the development of HIV-associated dementia.
Lachlan has authored more than 36 peer-reviewed journal articles (11 as first/senior author) and presented at many prominent national and international conferences. He received the prestigious Dora Lush Biomedical Postgraduate Scholarship (NHMRC) to support him during his PhD and was also awarded a highly competitive Australian-based Postdoctoral Training Fellowship (NHMRC) in 2010 to support his Postdoctoral studies. During his short scientific career he has been awarded multiple prizes and awards (n=30), totalling more than $55,000. He is an active member of the scientific community and previously held the position of President and Chair of the AMREP Early-Mid Career Research Committee at AMREP. He also served as Editor for the ECRTimes Newsletter for the two years and helped convene several scientific workshops and conferences.