Antimicrobial Resistance and Novel Therapies

Managing 'untreatable' infections
AMR threatens population health in low and middle income countries and indigenous Australians, but also major medical advances in surgery, cancer, transplantation, and intensive care.
Our research is looking at  approaches to combat the spectre of potentially ‘untreatable’ infections (bacterial, fungal and viral).

Meet our experts

Precision ID therapeutics

Prof Alffenaar is a hospital pharmacist and clinical pharmacologist. His research is focussed on the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of antimicrobial agents, in particular antifungal agents and anti-TB drugs.

Phage therapy

Prof Iredell is an infectious diseases physician and clinical microbiologist specialising in critical infections and transmission of antibiotic resistance. He conducts basic and clinical research, combining his clinical expertise in critical care and long-standing research in molecular genetics. His research covers critical infections and microbial ecology, especially in relation to transmissible antimicrobial resistance in bacteria.

Dr Khatami is a paediatric infectious diseases specialist and was part of a team who were able to access phage therapy to treat a patient with a long-standing and highly antibiotic-resistant bacteria. This was the first use of phages to treat a child in Australia and demonstrated phage therapy to be safe and feasible for paediatric patients. Since then, Dr Khatami has treated additional patients with phage therapy for various indications including the first use of genetically modified phages in Australia. She has also led the development of a nationally endorsed, standardised protocol for administration and monitoring of phage therapy in Australia (STAMP).

Drug discovery and delivery

Professor Chan is a world leader in respiratory drug delivery.  He has developed a leading research program on aerosol drug delivery, ranging fromin vitro production methods and characterisation of inhalation aerosols, computational modelling for powder aerosols and inhaler design to in vivo imaging study of aerosol deposition in the lungs and clinical applications.

Prof Codd is an expert in bioinorganic and medicinal chemistry. She studies the inorganic chemical biology of a class of metabolites known as siderophores produced by bacteria and fungi for iron supply, and designs compounds and approaches to disrupt iron supply for antibacterial discovery. In other work, she exploits the broader metal binding capacity of siderophores for bioimaging.

Prof Errington's long-standing interest in antibiotic discovery has led a big effort to study the molecular genetics, chemistry and mode of action of natural product molecules made by actinobacteria, and to harness the outcomes of this work for future drug discovery.

The Errington lab has recently pioneered molecular genetic work on a remarkable bacterial physiological adaptation called the “L-form”. L-forms are variants that completely lack the highly conserved cell wall that is normally considered an essential structure. Among the unusual features of these cells is their total resistance to important antibiotics, such as penicillins, that target the cell wall. The lab is exploring the role of L-forms in a range of recurrent infections.

Prof Payne uses the tools of chemistry to address problems of biochemical and medicinal significance. His multidisciplinary research uses natural products as starting points for the development of new drug leads for infectious diseases, particularly tuberculosis and malaria.

  • Anneliese Ashhurst
  • Joshua Maxwell
  • Daniel Ford
  • Paige Hawkins
  • Arthur Tang
  • Max Bedding
  • Josh Dilly
  • Sarah Fry
  • Katriona Harrison
  • Angus Mackay 
  • Isabel Barter
  • Patrick Carlos
  • Belinda Zhang
  • Bryton Forster 
  • Christopher Lehmann

Research team page