About Dr Kristina Cook

Oxygen is essential to human survival. Both localized and systemic oxygen deprivation (hypoxia) are common in many diseases (cancer, inflammatory diseases, heart disease, certain sleep disorders, pulmonary tuberculosis). My research studies the cellular effect of hypoxia, particularly in diseases like cancer, sleep and cardiovascular disease. Another component of my research involves drug development and targeting hypoxia activated pathways.

My work is highly cross-disciplinary with a translational focus that uses techniques from cell biology, biochemistry and chemical biology. My lab uses a range of in vitro and in vivo models (with key collaborators) to understand how cellular oxygen sensing pathways (HIF, KDMs, ADO) respond to hypoxia and drive disease. Furthermore, we collaborate with experts in cancer, sleep and cardiovascular disease. For example, in one project, we aim to understand how tumour hypoxia (low oxygen) alters cancer development, growth and spread. Another area of interest is obstructive sleep apnoea, which generates repetitive systemic hypoxia throughout the night. My lab is investigating how hypoxia from sleep apnoea contributes towards disease, including heart failure and tumour metastasis. Additional areas of interest include studying the links between circadian rhythms and cancer, and developing new drugs that inhibit HIF. I am always happy to meet with students interested in joining the lab, so please send me an email with transcripts and CV to discuss current research opportunities.

Dr Kristina Cook is currently a research fellow at the Charles Perkins Centre, University of Sydney. 

Dr Cook completed her D.Phil. in Chemical Biology at the University of Oxford in a collaborative program with the NIH (USA) as an OxCam Biomedical Research Scholar. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from San Diego State University, with a B.S. in Molecular and Cellular Biology and a minor in Chemistry (awarded a ‘distinction', equiv. to the University Medal). 

Dr Cook has received multiple scientific awards and grants, including a NSW Health EMCR Cardiovascular Grant (2021-2023), a Charlie Teo Foundation Fellowship (2020-2022), a Cancer Institute NSW Early Career Fellowship (2017-2020), a University of Sydney Research Fellowship (2017-2020), an AMP Tomorrow maker Award (2017), a Females in Science Award (2016), and many others

Selected publications

For a full list of her publications see her academic profile page at: