Deniz Dalkara is a tenured researcher in INSERM, France and leads a team on gene therapies and animal models of neurodegenerative disease at the Vision Institute in Paris. She graduated from Middle East technical University with a B.S. degree in Biology in 2001. Afterwards, she obtained a masters degree in pharmacology and pharmacochemistry in Strasbourg, France where she later pursued a PhD degree in cellular and molecular aspects of biology. She was awarded the Biovalley PhD thesis award for the protein delivery method she developed during her graduate studies, which was subsequently commercialized under the name “Pulse In” by Polyplus transfections. Later on she conducted her post-doctoral studies in the laboratory of Ernst Babmerg at the Max Planck Institute of Biophysics before moving on to UC Berkeley to do a second post-doctoral training in 2007. At UC Berkeley, Dr Dalkara applied viral engineering principals to enhance AAV vectors for their application in retinal degenerative diseases. Her work includes molecular evolution and engineering of viral gene delivery vehicles and their application to develop innovative gene therapeutic strategies to combat blinding diseases of the retina in mouse models of disease. In 2012 Dr Dalkara received the Young Investigator award to start her group at the Vision Institute in Paris. Since then she’s been recognized as an ‘Innovator under 35’ by the MIT Technology review and has been awarded Euretina innovation award. She continues to carry out her research activities at the Paris Vision Institute with a strong focus on translational research.