I am interested in how genomic research can benefit and be incorporated into the conservation of nature. I believe that we can leverage genomics and revolutionary approaches such as portable DNA sequencing to revolutionize our understanding of planetary health, with important implications for biodiversity conservation, non-invasive biomonitoring, biosecurity, public health and, in general, for democratizing science.
During my PhD at the University of Cambridge, UK, and the EMBL - European Bioinformatics Institute, I applied and developed methodology in the fields of statistical genomics, deep learning and single-cell genetics. I am now combining this expertise in genomics with my background in both applied and theoretical ecology to investigate how these approaches can be combined with established applications from population and evolutionary genomics to inform the fledgling field of conservation genomics.
As a Research Fellow, I then focused on two critically endangered avian species endemic to New Zealand, the takahē and the kākāpō. I further benchmark portable DNA sequencing and different environmental DNA approaches to obtain information about species presence and population structure.
As a new Principal Investigator at Helmholtz Munich, AI For Health, and the Helmholtz Pioneer Campus, I invite any interested researchers to be in touch and discuss our common interests and potential collaborations.
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Lara receives NZ$ 30k for more
portable sequencing research