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2018 Laureate Profile: Professor James Whisstock

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Professor James Whisstock

Professor James Whisstock

Administering Organisation: Monash University  

Discipline Area: Biological Sciences and Biotechnology

Fellowship project summary:


This project aims to develop and deploy an in situ structural biology approach, which enables direct visualisation of large macromolecular structures in cells, to be used in combination with molecular genetics, proteomics and computational biology. In situ structural biology has the potential to revolutionise discovery across life science, providing direct insight into macromolecular structure and function. This project will establish the field of in situ structural biology in Australia by studying how a model organism, the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster controls the development of how the head and tail of the embryo are specified. The project will further develop new instrumentation and approaches that will bring in situ biology to the wider scientific community

Australian Research Council funding: $2,906,976

About Professor Whisstock

James Whisstock is a Professor in the Biomedicine Discovery Institute, in the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences at Monash University.

Professor Whisstock completed his Degree and PhD at the University of Cambridge (United Kingdom) and moved to Australia to establish his laboratory at Monash in 1997. Professor Whisstock’s group studies immunity, blood coagulation and developmental biology. His team aims to understand how these processes relate to immune driven diseases, cancer, coagulopathies and neurological disorders.  Professor Whisstock has further led the establishment of several state-of-the-art technology research platforms at Monash University, including most recently the Clive and Vera Ramaciotti Centre for Structural Cryo-Electron Microscopy.

As Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence in Advanced Molecular Imaging, Professor Whisstock leads an interdisciplinary team that integrates physics, mathematics, chemistry and biology in order to unravel the complex molecular interactions that define immunity.

As Scientific Head of EMBL Australia, Professor Whisstock has overseen the expansion and development of the EMBL Australia Partner Laboratory Network, particularly with regards to the application of imaging to life sciences.

James Whisstock was awarded the 2006 Science Minister’s Prize for Life Science, the 2008 Commonwealth Health Minister’s Award for Excellence in Health and Medical Research, and the 2010 Australian Academy of Science Gottschalk Medal. Professor Whisstock held an Australian Research Council Federation Fellowship from 2008–2012.

Find out more about Professor James Whisstock’s research by visiting his profile page on the Monash University website.

For further information about this funding scheme, please visit the Australian Laureate Fellowships scheme page on the ARC website.

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