Principal Advisor: Professor Gabrielle Belz


Research group: Belz Group - Innate immunology

Organisational unit: UQ Diamantina Institute

Our work aims to understand how the immune system responds to infections (including viruses, bacteria and parasites) and tumour cells. We are investigating how different types of immune cells develop, and what factors influences their decision to become one type of immune cell or another to mediate long term immune protection. Understanding how the body deals with pathogens will give clues about how to enhance protective immunity. Our goal is to discover new therapies that boost our immune system to protect against infection. We aim to:

  • Identify novel functions of innate lymphoid cells and NK cells in immune protection
  • Unravel the microbiome-epithelial-immune interface protecting mucosal surfaces
  • Elucidate the mechanisms responsible for the generation of protective immunity in response to lung and gastrointestinal pathogens

Combining cellular, molecular biology, and high throughput technologies the candidate will investigate the role of novel transcription factors in governing innate cell fate using a number of approaches including flow cytometry, imaging and molecular approaches. A PhD scholarship is available for this project.