Australia has long had a reputation for its high quality microbiology research. Naturally a large volume of that research is produced in our Go8 universities based in the big cities, and so often the smaller rural and regional universities are overlooked or forgotten. I thought I’d take some time and talk to an honour student from the University of New England (UNE), Armidale (NSW Northern Tablelands) to showcase some of the research being undertaken in the “bush.” It’s the country, so naturally I grabbed a tea and baked treat in the UNE Booloominbah Homestead and chatted with Toni Petronaitis: microbiology and cake-making* extraordinaire! (*I eagerly await the day Toni is on “cake day” duties for our department, she makes *amazing* cakes).
Abdou is a Marie Sklodowska Curie Global Research Fellow, and works between the University of Melbourne and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. He completed his PhD on Shigella secretion systems at the Université Libre de Bruxelles, before working in post-doctoral positions in Marseille, Paris, and London. He now works between London and Melbourne, and his research focuses on secretion systems of Burkholderia.
Leigh is a lab head at the Paul G. Allen School for Global Animal Health, at Washington State University. She completed her PhD in biochemistry at the University of New South Wales, before heading overseas for a series of postdoctoral positions in California, Vancouver, and Montana. In 2012 she joined Washington State University to head a research group, where she investigates how Salmonella infect epithelial cells.
Hayley is a lab head and senior lecturer at the Doherty Institute, where she leads a research group focused on intracellular bacterial pathogens. Hayley completed her PhD at Monash University in 2007 before taking up an NHMRC-funded postdoctoral position at Yale University, where she studied the pathogenesis of Coxiella burnettii under Prof. Craig Roy. In 2013 she joined the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Melbourne, where she now balances both research and teaching roles. Hayley is also the chair of the ASM special interest group for Molecular Microbiology.
Hey everyone, this is Josh - one of your ASM comms ambassadors for September! I started out studying biotechnology at the University of Newcastle - a degree focused on the molecular biology of bacteria, plants, and animal reproduction. I got my first taste of research through volunteer/summer placements, and then continued into my honours year looking at transcription factors of Acinetobacter, an emerging pathogen characterised by extensive antimicrobial resistance. Now I'm most (?) of the way through a PhD at the University of Melbourne, looking at effector proteins that are translocated into host cells by Salmonella during infection. We use a range of microscopy and mass spec techniques to study a rare glycosylation event catalysed by a set of Salmonella effectors. On the side I'm involved with teaching and outreach work, spreading the good word of infectious bugs and their impact on us. Over the next couple of weeks I'll be posting some interviews with lab heads and post-docs that have all been involved with Australian microbiology research. We'll be talking about their career paths, motivations and interests, and their advice to younger researchers. Keep an eye on our twitter @AUSSOCMIC for updates, and you can follow me @joshnewson and my co-ambassador Dane @greenepidemic for more tweets
Well hello again! In case you don't remember me, I'm Dane and I’m back to be one of your Communication Ambassadors for September 2016! (*Cue: w00ts*).
The end of August is upon us (where is this year disappearing to?!) which means the end of my blogging and tweeting period is here and its time to pass over the reins to the next ASM Communication ambassador!
For my final interview before I sign out and hand over my blogging rights onto the next ASM communications ambassador, we have Toni Cox! Toni is another microbial researcher that I was lucky enough to meet at the New Zealand Microbial Ecology Consortium (NZMEC4.0) in Auckland earlier this year! Originally from New Zealand, Toni is in the final 6 months of her PhD at the University of Melbourne.
Gene Drendel completed his honours just last year and is currently in the first six months of his PhD in the Applied and Environmental Microbiology lab at La Trobe University
Todays mini interview is with Sarah Larcombe! Sarah is currently in the final year of her PhD at Monash University where she researches bacterial associated dysbiosis of the gut (HOORAY!!). Sarah was also one of our communication ambassadors last year!