Prof Laura Mackay | Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity

Professor Laura Mackay, Laboratory Head

Functional heterogeneity of tissue-resident lymphocytes

Laura Mackay is a Laboratory Head at the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity at The University of Melbourne and holds an Adjunct appointment at the Singapore Immunology Network at A*STAR in Singapore. She is currently a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) and Bill & Melinda Gates International Scholar, a Sylvia & Charles Viertel Charitable Foundation Senior Medical Research Fellow, and a National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Career Development Fellow. Laura obtained her PhD from The University of Birmingham, U.K. in 2009, before taking up a post-doctoral position with Professor Francis Carbone at the University of Melbourne. She established an independent group at the Doherty Institute in 2016. Her laboratory studies memory T cell responses, with a focus on the signals that control tissue-resident memory T cell differentiation, with a view to harness these cells to develop new treatments against infection and cancer.

For a number of years, Laura has been at the forefront of research into tissue-resident memory T cells and their involvement in skin immunity, which has resulted in publications in journals including ScienceNatureNature ImmunologyNature Medicine, Immunity and PNAS. Her research is supported by project grants from the NHMRC and The University of Melbourne, and she has secured Fellowships including an ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA) in 2014, an NHMRC Career Development Fellowship Level 1 (CDF) in 2016, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) – Bill & Melinda Gates International Research Scholarship in 2017 and a Sylvia & Charles Viertel Charitable Foundation Senior Medical Research Fellowship in 2018. Laura is the recipient of Awards including The Gottschalk Medal (2019, Australian Academy of Science), The Michelson Prize for Human Immunology (2018), The Victorian Young Tall Poppy Award (2016) and The Victorian Infection and Immunity Network Young Investigator Award. She frequently presents at international meetings, serves on Editorial Boards including Science Immunology, Trends in Immunology and Frontiers in Immunology, and on Strategic Advisory Boards including TheLymphoid Dynamics and HIV Persistence Program in Durban, South Africa, and The Singapore Immunology and Inflammation Cluster.
 Laura is a permanent co-host on National Triple R Radio science show Einstein-A-Go-Go and is the current serving President of The Federation of Immunological Societies of Asia-Oceania (FIMSA).

Host: Prof David Tscharke, Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases