Professor David Waugh
Professor David Waugh is Head of QUT's School of Biomedical Sciences, and Professor of Molecular Oncology and Therapeutics. His primary research interest lies in understanding the importance of inflammatory signals and how they contribute to the initiation and progression of prostate cancers. His work has determined the importance of specific inflammatory chemokine proteins in underpinning the aggressive behaviour of a major population of prostate cancers. His current research focuses on how inhibiting these signals may constitute new opportunities to improve outcomes for patients with advanced prostate cancer.
Professor Colleen Nelson
Professor Colleen Nelson has more than 25 years of experience in prostate cancer research with a specific focus on the function of androgens in prostate cancer, the molecular, cellular and systemic effects of androgen deprivation therapy and mechanisms underlying progression toward castrate resistance prostate cancer. Her laboratory made the seminal discovery that castrate resistant prostate tumours can synthesize their own androgens de novo from cholesterol. Recently, these findings have been extended to investigate the inter-relationships of androgen synthesis, prostate cancer progression, and metabolic syndrome.
Associate Professor Chamindie Punyadeera
Associate Professor Chamindie Punyadeera is a globally acknowledged pioneer in salivary diagnostics. She leads a world-class saliva research laboratory in Australia that is focusing on developing novel non-invasive diagnostic tools to detect heart disease and head and neck cancers early, linking oral health to systemic diseases. Her team collaborates with Janssen Biotech in developing salivary diagnostics for throat cancers. Her team is also developing prognostic assays to identify pateints likely to develop recurrences using circulating tumour cells.
Associate Professor Jyotsna Batra
Jyotsna Batra is Associate Professor and NHMRC Career Development Fellow at the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre-Queensland, QUT. She studied Biochemistry towards a Master’s degree and obtained her PhD in Biotechnology working on the genetic complexity of heredity disorders. In 2014 she was one of only 30 recipients of the Mahatma Gandhi Pravasi Samman award, given to people of Indian origin living in other countries to help further their education or careers. Dr Batra leads a research group working on molecular genetics of prostate cancer. Her current research focus is to identify cancer risk-associated genetic variants and to understand their molecular consequences on cancer initiation and progression.
Dr Nathalie Bock
Dr Nathalie Bock started her research career with an internship at Apatech Ltd., a leading company for bone graft substitutes, in the UK in 2006. This formed part of her Masters studies at the European School of Materials Science and Engineering in France. In 2007, she undertook a two-year research assistant role at the Institute of Nanostructured Materials in Italy, where she contributed to a large FP7 European project by developing magnetic biomimetic scaffolds for in vivo bone tissue engineering. Dr Bock joined the Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia in 2010 where she completed PhD on controlled growth factor therapies for applications in tissue engineering, at the Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation. Her research focusses on bioengineered prostate cancer tumour models used to investigate responses to androgen targeted therapies and rationalized co-targeting agents.
Dr Jennifer Gunter
Dr Jennifer Gunter completed her PhD in 2005 at the Oxford Centre for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism at Oxford University. In 2010, Jenni joined the Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation at QUT to research the intersection between chronic metabolic disorders and their emerging relationship to cancer. These studies were focused on the role of insulin and the relationship between the insulin and androgen signalling axes. Jenni has authored over 20 peer-reviewed manuscripts in high-impact journals, including 6 first or senior-author papers, 4 reviews and 3 book chapters and has been awarded over $7.9 million in competitive grants.
Dr Pascal Duijf
Dr Pascal Duijf is a Senior Lecturer in Genetics and Informatics in the School of Biomedical Sciences. His research focuses on identifying the causes and consequences of genomic instability in the development of cancer. He aims to translate this knowledge into the development of cancer diagnostic, therapeutic and precision medicine approaches. To achieve this, he uses a broad range of methods, including mouse modelling, genome editing, microscopy, cell and molecular biology, molecular pathology, proteomics and computational systems genomics.
Dr Arutha Kulasinghe completed his Bachelor of Science and Honours majoring in Medical Microbiology at the University of Pretoria (South Africa). In 2014, he undertook his PhD studies in the investigation of circulating tumour cells in head and neck cancers at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT), receiving his doctorate in 2017. In 2019, Dr Kulasinghe began a Peter Doherty NHMRC Early Career Fellowship to develop biomarkers of immunotherapy response in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) and lung cancer. His research aims to use spatial analysis of the tumour microenvironment and profiling of liquid biopsy (circulating tumour cells/circulating tumour DNA) to identify biomarkers of response to immune checkpoint inhibitors. Dr Kulasinghe is supported by a number of funding agencies including the NHMRC, Cure Cancer and the GPRWMF.