Genetics and Infectious Diseases
I am interested in the genetics of several diseases that affect isolated, less affluent populations. My group works on the host response to infection by malarial parasites. Primarily we use rodent parasites but also translate our findings into humans. I work closely with Associate Professor Brendan McMorran and Dr Gaetan Burgio. Together, we have implicated platelets as being an important component of the innate immune response against malaria. We are also interested in designing new drugs that target the host and are therefore less prone to the development of drug resistance by the parasite. We have identified a large number of potential drug targets.
We also work on the genetics underpinning the renal disease that is so common in Australian Aboriginal communities. We work closely with the Tiwi people of the Northern Territory.