NEWS: Welcome, Sam!

With the beginning of the new year, Sam joined our lab as a post-doctoral fellow!

Sam completed his PhD in the lab of Jean-Paul Vincent at the Francis Crick Institute in London, UK. During his PhD, Sam studied the role of EGFR signalling in early Drosophila development. You can read about his research here. 

Welcome to the team, Sam, it’s great to have you!

NEWS: Congrats, Alex, for your successful conferences and travel award application!

In the last weeks, Alex has been presenting her work at several conferences, and was doing so very successfully: 

At the 11th Australian Islet Study Group Meeting, she received a Young Investigator Travel Award (sponsored by JDRF). 

Her attendance at the BPS-MPGPCR meeting and conference dinner was fully sponsored by a BMG LABTECH Student Award. At the same conference, she was also awarded the Best Student Oral Prize (sponsored by the British Pharmacological Society). 

In addition to this, she was also successful in her application for the EMBL Australia Short-term travel grant. 

Congratulations Alex for this impressive performance, keep up the great work! 

NEWS: Meet us at conferences around Australia!

The year may be coming to an end, but we are still active presenting our lab’s work at conferences around Australia! Here is an overview where you can meet us in the upcoming weeks:

Harald will be giving a lecture on light-based regeneration in the pancreas at the Australian Islet Study Group Meeting in Canberra at the end of November (LINK). Alex and Eva will be presenting their work as well, so make sure to chat to them at their posters.

At the same time, Elliot will be attending the CSIRO Synthetic Biology Future Science Platform Workshop in Sydney, where he will be presenting his work on modular optogenetic cloning platforms to his fellow CSIRO SynBio FSP community.

At the beginning of December, you can meet Alex and Elliot at the BPS-MPGPCR meeting in Melbourne (LINK). You can visit Alex at her poster or listen to her talk about light-activated GPCRs.

If you are around, come and chat  – it would be great to meet you!

For our overseas friends: we will be posting a first overview of our international travels for 2019 soon, so keep checking in for updates on where to meet us!

NEWS: Congratulations to our latest graduate: Catherine McKenzie, PhD!

Like a knife through butter, Catherine successfully presented and defended her PhD thesis on synthetic neurotransmission!

Catherine joined as a PhD student when the lab was still in its baby shoes, and she was fundamental in shaping the lab and all its members over the years. With her endless passion and dedication for her work, she spear-headed the neuroscience branch of the lab. Catherine’s friendship was hard-earned, but her fierce loyalty made anyone lucky to have her as a friend!

From all of us: Congratulations on your success, Catherine! We are proud and happy to see your hard work paying off, and wish you all the best for your next steps!


NEWS: Collaborative paper in Nature Chemical Biology

Our newest collaborative paper with the labs of Christian Henneberger (University of Bonn) and Colin Jackson (Australian National University) just came out in Nature Chemical Biology (LINK)!

The project was funded by a HFSP project grant that we all were awarded a couple of years ago!

Congratulations to team GlyFS, especially to the co-first authors William and Michel, and to Inma for her many contributions to sensor design in our lab!


NEWS: Paper in Nature Communications – Congrats, Maurizio!

Congratulations to our former PhD student Maurizio!

During his PhD research, Maurizio led the project on optical activation of orphan GPCRs, and the work titled “Optical functionalization of human Class A orphan G-protein coupled receptors” was published this week in Nature Communications!

Congrats also to the other authors, the teamwork paid off!

You can find the paper here!


NEWS: Welcome, Elliot!

Elliot was awarded a CSIRO Synthetic Biology Future Science Fellowship and is joining our group here at ARMI and EMBL Australia as a post-doctoral fellow.

Elliot completed his PhD in the lab of Rob Lucas at the University of Manchester, where he was working on the structure and function of jellyfish opsins (see here).

Congratulations and Welcome, Elliot! We are happy to have you join our team!

NEWS: Talk season is coming up!

Talk season is coming up for Harald!

Harald is invited to the Gordon Research Conference “Photosensory Receptors and Signal Transduction” (March 5), Stanford University (March 20), UC Davis (March 22) and the Gordon Research Conference “Fibroblast Growth Factors in Development and Disease” (March 25)!

Click here for a list of Harald’s recent and upcoming talks and join him to hear about the newest research of the group!

NEWS: Exciting times for the group!

Exciting times for the Synthetic Physiology group!

As you may have already heard the group is moving to the Australian Regenerative Medicine Institute (ARMI) and the EMBL Australia Partnership Laboratory (EMBL Australia) based at Monash University at the beginning of this year!

We are excited to join the vibrant research landscape of ARMI, EMBL Australia, Monash, Melbourne and Australia and more information on our new home will follow soon.

Now is the time to say “Goodbye” and “Thank you!”.

Harald: “First and foremost I would like to thank IST Austria’s president and vice president Tom and Michael for their leadership in the past years. Also, my group and I are indebted to the many facilities and administrative units of the institute that supported us in countless ways through thick and thin. Finally, I would like to thank my Assistant Professor colleagues; we all have had the courage to start our independent careers at a new institute that we advanced and shaped while also developing truly excellent research programs.”

Off to new shores!