Yarra valley lodge, 15-16 AUGUST 2019

Invited Speakers


Prof Donna Farber

Columbia University, USA

Prof Farber is located in the Columbia Center for Translational Immunology at the Columbia University Irving Medical Center. Prof Farber's research is focused on defining how the immune system responds to pathogens and maintains homeostasis with age. We are particularly interested in understanding how the immune response is localized in tissue sites, and how T lymphocytes resident within tissues develop and maintain immunological memory to infection and vaccines.  

Find out more

A/Prof Kristen Radford

  Mater Research Institute-UQ

A/Prof Radford is the Group Leader for the Cancer Immunotherapies Research Team at Mater Research. Their research is currently focused on understanding human dendritic cell (DC) biology and translating findings into health benefits. These rare white leukocytes are crucial for generating immune responses to eradicate cancer and many pathogens but are poorly understood in humans. This research group has developed novel research tools, including humanised mice models, which are highly sought after in the biomedical world and continues to lead in this area.

Find out more

Prof Michael Hickey

Leukocyte Trafficking Group- Monash University

Leukocytes play critical roles in protective responses to infection and injury. However, these same cells are also major contributors to inappropriate, damaging responses in inflammatory diseases. Our laboratory studies the actions of leukocytes in models of inflammatory disease, using state-of-the-art imaging systems such as multiphoton microscopy to directly visualise leukocytes in vivo during their recruitment from the bloodstream, and following their entry into tissues.

Find out more

A/Prof Laura Mackay

Peter Doherty Institute, University of Melbourne

Laura Mackay is currently a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) and Bill & Melinda Gates International Scholar, a Sylvia & Charles Viertel Charitable Foundation Senior Medical Research Fellow, and a National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Career Development Fellow. Since establishingher group at the Doherty Institute in 2016, she has made breakthrough studies on memory T cell responses, with a focus on the signals that control tissue-resident memory T cell differentiation, with a view to harness these cells to develop new treatments against infection and cancer.

Find out more

Prof David Tarlinton

Dept of Immunology and Pathology- Monash University

Professor David Tarlinton is Head of Department and laboratory head for the Immune Memory Laboratory in the Department of Immunology and Pathology. His group y focuses on antibody memory - what triggers the formation of memory cells and what factors and processes regulate their composition, persistence and reactivation. The research in the Tarlinton laboratory examines the basis of antibody production in normal situations such as vaccination and infection and in situations where it is causing illness, in diseases like systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and in cancers of antibody producing cells which include one called multiple myeloma (MM). The aim is to enable control of the process to achieve better health outcomes and better management of disease.

Find out more

Dr Karla Helbig

Physiology, Anatomy and Microbiology, La Trobe University

Dr Helbig’s research investigates the role of interferons and their downstream regulated interferon stimulated genes, and how they orchestrate and control the host anti-viral response.  Dr Helbigs' laboratory uses advanced imaging, molecular, and genomic techniques to examine the cellular and molecular mechanisms of the host response to viral infection. Her research continues to unravel the role of novel host proteins in the control of viral infection, with a goal towards development of novel strategies to combat viral infection in both humans and animals.

Find out more

A/Prof Di Yu

John Curtin School of Medical Research- ANU  

A/Prof Yu’s laboratory investigate the molecular mechanisms whereby T cells regulate the competence and balance of immune responses, aiming to design new strategies for immunotherapies to treat inflammation, autoimmune disease, infection and cancer. Three major approaches are used in his research. Gene-targeted mice are used to investigate basic molecular mechanisms of the adaptive immunity. Second, phenotyping of immune cells using methods such as multi-colour flow cytometry to monitor the immune system of patients to understand the dysregulated immune responses associated with diseases and the immunological changes responding to therapies. Third, based on biochemical and structural knowledge of cytokines, they design and optimize cytokine-based immunotherapies to modulate the immune system to treat human diseases.

Find out more

Dr Sarah Londrigan

Peter Doherty Institute, University of Melbourne

Dr Sarah Londrigan postdoctoral research from 2002 to 2008 at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute (WEHI) involved creating immunomodulatory adenoviruses that generated local immunosuppression during islet transplantation to treat Type I diabetes.  Dr Londrigan’s research involves understanding the entry pathways of influenza virus into host cells, and how airway immune cells can control influenza virus replication.  

Find out more

Dr Kirsten Fairfax

Menzies Institute, University of Tasmania


Dr Fairfax’s studies have focused upon functional interrogation of lLoci associated with the regulation of haematopoiesis, will place a particular emphasis on using molecular insights into haematopoiesis. Her studies are based on developing gene-based therapeutic applications, and she has recently relocated from WEHI to the Cancer, Genetics and Immunology research programs of the Menzies Institute for Medical Research and University of Tasmania. 


Dr Vanessa Bryant

Immunology Division- WEHI

Dr Bryant’s research interests focus on understanding how genetic variants affect immune cell function to cause primary immunodeficiency disorders, specifically focusing on the heterogeneous common variable immunodeficiency (CVID), both as a primary immunodeficiency in itself, and as a model for complex immune disorders.