Can pathogenic bacteria 'percieve' the tissue types in their environment?

Study level


Master of Philosophy


Topic status

We're looking for students to study this topic.


Dr Mark Harrison
Senior Research Fellow
Division / Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
Professor Flavia Huygens
Associate Director, IHBI (QIMR-B)
Division / Faculty
Faculty of Health


Pathogenic bacteria have a range of mechanisms by which they perceive their environment. It is not clear if pathogenic bacteria have the capacity to perceive the tissue type in which they reside but, if such capacity is present, it is likely to involve the action of secreted proteases.

Research activities

While working on this project you will:

  1. develop methods to produce and isolate peptide mixtures from a range of tissue types
  2. determine the dose-response of the peptide mixtures on the transcriptome of P. aeruginosa.


The aim of the project is to determine if constitutive secretion of proteases is a mechanism by which pathogenic bacteria 'perceive' their environment.

Skills and experience

You will well regarded for this project if you have knowledge and strong practical skills in the following scientific fields:

  • medical microbiology
  • molecular genetics
  • protein chemistry
  • proteomics.


You may be able to apply for a research scholarship in our annual scholarship round.

Annual scholarship round



Contact Mark Harrison for more information.