In 2002 I began to focus my scientific career on genome maintenance research. Since 2007, it has been my long term goal to delineate the molecular roles of the structural maintenance of chromosomes (SMC) complexes and the cell cycle kinases, Aurora and Polo-like kinases. Aberrant expression and mutation of SMC complexes effect at least one in 10,000 births per year, resulting in microcephaly, cognitive and growth retardation, infertility and predisposition to cancer. Mutations and mis-expression of Aurora and Polo-like kinases are both responsible for poor cancer prognosis, developmental disorders, aneuploidy and infertility.
Since beginning my tenure-track Assistant Professor position in the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Department (BMB) at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, I have built a strong research team that continues to focus on determining the functions of the SMC complexes and the roles of Aurora and Polo-like kinases in both somatic and germ cells. We are also addressing the importance of SMC5/6 in cancer propensity and malignancy, using novel protein degradation methods. We will continue to determine the molecular processes required for genome maintenance, which is essential for normal organismal development, cellular homeostasis and prevention of diseases including cancers.
Past research experience:
Bachelor in Biotechnology, 1st Class Honours, Flinders University of South Australia
PhD, University of Edinburgh, Scotland
Post graduate Certificate in Higher Education, University of Sussex, England
Post-doc, University of Sussex, England
Post-doc, The Jackson Laboratory, USA