CMT Our People

Our People

CMT brings together academic researchers, clinicians, and postgraduate students from four JCU Colleges (College of Public Health, Medical and Veterinary Sciences, College of Medicine and Dentistry, College of Healthcare Sciences, College of Science and Engineering) within the Research Division, as well as affiliated members from other universities, hospitals, rural health facilities, and pharmaceutical/biotechnology companies. Most members are based at JCU Townsville and JCU Cairns. Other members are located throughout Queensland or New South Wales or in neighbouring countries, such as Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands.

Management Committee

Centre Director - Professor Denise Doolan


Professor Alex Loukas

Phone: +61742321608

Alex’s 20+ scientific career has focused on parasitic helminths and he is regarded as a world leader in the field of helminth secretomes and their utility as medicines.

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Molecular Characterisation and Design

Professor Norelle Daly

Phone: +61742321815

Norelle's research involves exploring the potential of peptides as drug candidates for therapeutic applications. Peptides are of significant interest in drug design as they can be highly potent and specific for a range of different drug targets.

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Dr Lionel Hebbard

Phone: +61747815684

Lionel's current research focuses on the role of adiponectin and its receptors in cancer, liver injury and fibrosis, and metabolism.

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Molecular Immunology

Professor Andreas Lopata

Phone: +61747814563

Andreas is considered a world leader on seafood allergy within the field of food allergies, his research uses cutting-edge approaches in characterising the interactions of immunogenic proteins from different food sources with our human immune system.

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Associate Professor John Miles



John was awarded BSc Hons in 2001 and a PhD in 2008 from the University of Queensland. His work involves understanding basic immune processes which determine the host’s response to infectious disease and chronic conditions.

Clinical Translation

Professor Jon Golledge

Phone: +61747814838

Jon holds a conjoint position between the School of Medicine and Dentistry and Queensland Health, where he works as a vascular surgeon. His principal aspiration is to improve management of peripheral vascular diseases.

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Dr Paul Giacomin

Phone: +61742321868

Pauls's research interests have focussed on understanding the molecular and cellular mechanisms by which immune responses to parasitic helminths (worms) are initiated and regulated.

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Other CMT Staff

Dr Andreas Kupz



Andreas has embarked on a biological arms race to develop an effective life-long vaccine for tuberculosis in the face of steadily growing drug resistance to the disease. BCG, only protects children.

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Dr Ashley Waardenberg



Ashley's research interests are focused around using novel technologies and methods for understanding mechanisms of disease, with the view to identifying suitable diagnostic and/or treatment approaches.

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Dr Alexandra Trollope



Alexandra is passionate about Anatomy, and she believes that conveying her passion and excitement through her teaching will assist in not only in engaging students but in fostering positive approaches to University and professional life.

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Professor Alan Nimmo



Dr Alanna Sorenson



Alanna's primary research interest is on the use of novel techniques such as differential scanning fluorimetry of GFP-tagged proteins to identify new antibiotics specific for the replicative processes of bacteria.

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A/Professor Brenda Govan



Brenda's research is interested in looking at the changing trends of antibiotic resistance patterns in northern QLD, and the molecular mechanisms that underlie this emergence.

A/Professor Catherine Rush



Cathy's principal research interest is understanding the immunological mechanisms underlying inflammatory and infectious diseases.

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Dr Claire Loiseau



Claire's research interests have focussed on identifying the molecular and cellular mechanisms of the human immune responses to parasites (Plasmodium. spp) by which high and low immune responders can be discriminate.

Photo of Dr Cadhla Firth

Dr Cadhla Firth

Cadhla's interests are in using new genome sequencing approaches to improve our ability to detect and control emerging infectious diseases in high-risk populations, and in understanding the ecology and evolution of diseases in human-animal interface.

Prof Damon Eisen


(07) 44331790

Damon's own research involves clinical laboratory investigations on the role of aspirin in prevention of sepsis as well as interrogating possible treatment for vascular disease by manipulating the lectin complement pathway.

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Dr David Pattinson

Dave is currently involved in a five-year, €20 million European Union collaborative project, OptiMalVax, which aims to develop a new, more effective multi-stage vaccine against Plasmodium falciparum, which is the deadliest cause of malaria.

Photo of Dr David Wilson

Dr David Wilson

David's research interests include exploring the potential of venom molecules, particularly spiders, scorpions and cone snails as novel drug leads for the treatment of diseases such as cancer.

Dr Ernie Jennings



Ernie's lab has concentrated on pain conditions that originate in the head. The lab has taken a broad approach to studying these questions, using techniques including behaviour, protein expression assays and patch - clamp electrophysiology.

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Prof Geoffrey Dobson



Geoffrey's current research involves understanding the genetics of trauma to better seek ways to switch the wounded or critically injured phenotype to a survival phenotype lasting up to 7 days for safe evacuation.

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Dr Graham Burgess



Graham's major research interest is the study of the pathogenesis of viral diseases of animals and man. Recent research projects have concentrated on molecular diagnostics and molecular epidemiology of infectious diseases.

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Dr Gustavo Cerqueira

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Dr Helma Antony

Dr Hillary Vanderven



Photo of Dr Ingrid Wise

Dr Ingrid Wise

Ingrid has experience in genetics, epigenetics and next generation sequencing. She has expertise in a wide range of analytical techniques for working with very large datasets.

Photo of Prof John McBride

Prof John McBride

John is an Infectious Diseases Physician and Clinical Microbiologist. His other areas of interest include HIV in PNG and the role of male circumcision in its prevention, rickettsial infections, Leptospirosis, thermal scanning for fever.

Dr Joseph Moxan

Joseph's research primarily focuses on identifying novel drug, diagnostic and prognostic targets for PAD and associated complications, with a specific emphasis on translating findings from the laboratory to the patient.

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A/Prof Jamie Seymour

Jamie's research has been directly responsible for changes in the present treatment protocol for Australian jellyfish stings. He is at the centre of all things venomous. His favourite quote: 'Is it dangerous? Venomous? Let’s research it!'

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Dr Jeffrey Warner

Dr Jeffrey WarnerJeff is a generalist microbiologist with an interest in tropical infection disease. Above all Jeff enjoys working with students, colleagues and collaborators in work that is intriguing, rewarding and relevant to the tropics.

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Mr Jeremy Potriquest

Dr Kate Miller

Kate's research investigates the interactions of parasites with their hosts and has broadened to investigating the initiation of inflammation in response to harmful stimuli and how this may be regulated by the body.

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Prof Louis Schofield

Louis is a recognised authority in the immunology and pathogenesis of infectious diseases, his research programs cover basic molecular sciences, product development and commercialisation, epidemiology and public health.

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Dr Lisa Chilton

Lisa has been studying the cardiovascular system throughout her research career. She studied how the intestinal circulation was impaired with cirrhosis of the liver, the role of ATP-sensitive potassium channels in cardiac stunning, the role of membrane potential in activation of white blood cells, the role of potassium channels in controlling blood vessel diameter, and the electrophysiology of cardiac fibroblasts.

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A/Prof Michael Oelgemoeller

Michael is a leading expert in green (solar) and microflow photochemistry. Michael's research activities include synthetic organic photochemistry, solar photochemistry, the development of new photochemical synthesis tools and photochemical water treatment.

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Dr Matt Field

Matt is a Chief Investigator for the Centre for Personalised Immunology, an NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence focused on bringing genomics and personalised medicine into routine clinical practice.

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Dr Mark Pearson

Mark’s major research focus involves looking at the functions of proteins from human parasites (specifically helminths, or worms) and how these molecules interact with the host immune system.

Dr Michael Smout

His research interests have included melanoma, childhood viral infections and most recently parasitic helminths of humans. His expertise focus is the proteins secreted by parasitic helminths and those that facilitate their parasitic existence.

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Dr Nagaraja Haleagrahara

Nagaraja's continuing research has enabled further discoveries in disease pathophysiology and novel therapeutics resulting in over 80 publications in international peer-reviewed journals, over 900 citations, and an h-index of 18.

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A/Prof Patrick Schaeffer

Patrick has a long-standing interest and track-record in developing innovative technologies with a focus on biomolecular recognition and self-assembly, and their applications.

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Dr Phurpa Wangchuk

Phurpa's current research at Professor Alex Loukas Laboratory involve the metabolomics, biodiscovery and molecular characterisation of the anti-inflammatory and anthelmintic small molecules from worms, medicinal plants and entomopathogenic fungi using HPLC, MALDI-MS, GCMS, NMR, and the in vitro, in vivo and ex vivo experimental models.

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Dr Paramjit Bansal

Paramjit's major area of research is synthesis of biologically active peptides from natural resources and engineering peptides to improve their activity and bioavailability.

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E/Prof Richard Keene

Richard's research interests are in the area of development of metal compounds with biological activity – particularly as anti-cancer, antimicrobial and anti-parasitic agents.

Prof Robyn McDermott

Robyn's research interests include the epidemiology of chronic disease and health transition, and how primary health care can improve outcomes in resource-poor settings.

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Mr Robert Courtney

Roberts core expertise and the majority of my research focuses on the life cycle, ecology and physiology of box jellyfish with particular emphasis on the Irukandji jellyfish Carukia barnesi.

Dr Roland Ruscher

Parasites such as hookworms have evolved ways to suppress parts of our immune system in order to avoid being expelled from our body. Such properties can be utilised for treatment of various diseases. Roland is interested in understanding how such molecules exert their therapeutic effects.

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Dr Robert Kinobe

Robert’s research interests are broad and include elucidation of molecular, biochemical and physiological mechanisms of cardiovascular diseases and their pharmacological treatments, and, evaluation of novel small molecules as therapeutic agents for infectious diseases; antimicrobial resistance.

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Dr Saparna Pai

Saparna has recently joined the Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine, James Cook University where she will investigate the role of memory CD8+ T cells in controlling infectious diseases, including Tuberculosis.

Dr Sandip Kamath

Sandip research implements state-of-the-art proteomic and molecular cloning techniques to elucidate specific antigenic regions of allergenic proteins, with an aim to design and generate hypoallergenic constructs for potential therapeutic applications.

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Dr Smriti Krishna

Smriti's primary interest is translational research aimed at better understanding the molecular and cellular mechanisms involved in development and progression of PAD and AAA.

Prof Zoltan Sarnyai

Zoltán is a medically-trained PhD neuroscientist with an active research program in the neurobiological mechanisms of stress and psychiatric disorders, including drug addiction, schizophrenia and depression.

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Dr Yide Wong

Yide is heavily involved in ensuring our lab keeps up to date with research regulation. His research skills include, flow-cytometry, high-throughput immune assays, cell and immune biology and experimental mouse work.

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