Research in BABS is aligned to four discipline areas:

  • Environmental Microbiology
  • Infectious Disease
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Systems and Cellular Biology

There is a wide scope of projects to interest Honours students, with research spanning human bacterial pathogens, functional genomics, genetics, viruses, cancer, cell biology, bioinformatics, extremophiles, and more.

The work spans from hypothesis-driven ‘blue sky’ research that advances human knowledge, to application-focused research that has potential medical and industrial benefits for society.

Our Honours students benefit greatly from world-class facilities that include the Ramaciotti Centre for Genomics, which houses nextg eneration genomic sequencing technology.

Honours Projects

The members of this research group form one of the strongest gatherings of world-class microbiologists and biotechnologists in Australia, which has for decades been recognised for its internationally competitive advantage in this research area. This group addresses globally relevant research themes.

Current research areas for this group include:

  • global ecosystems health
  • environmental microbial evolution and genomics
  • microbial ecology of Antarctic soils
  • bioremediation and bacterial biofilms
  • biological oceanography
  • bioastronautics
  • bioprospecting for drug discovery and design

The BABS Infectious Disease research group is committed to a broad range of research and teaching activities in Sydney and around the world. This group’s research focuses on vital health issues.

Current research areas include:

  • Tracking the evolution of pandemic norovirus responsible for acute gastroenteritis
  • Mathematical, computational and statistical models of infectious disease evolution
  • Molecular evolution of bacterial pathogens
  • Understanding how the hepatitis C virus evades host immune responses
  • Investigating the role of mucus-associated bacteria in gastrointestinal disease
  • Whether viruses such as human papillomavirus and Epstein-Barr virus are implicated in human cancer

Molecular Medicine within BABS has a unique strength in combining fundamental biological and biomolecular sciences with a strong applied biotechnology and medical focus. The School facilitates collaborative research efforts across discipline boundaries for fundamental discoveries, generation of commercial opportunities and clinical research. Molecular Medicine represents a significant proportion of research output from BABS within the medical area.

Research themes include:

  • Cancer chemotherapeutic agents
  • Role of transcription factors in development and disease
  • Immunological Bioinformatics
  • Neurobiology and neuroscience
  • Novel chemotherapeutics for the treatment of some cancers
  • Protein biotechnology
  • Non-coding RNAs in controlling gene expression

The Systems and Cellular Biology group undertakes research in the biology of eukaryotes. Members of the group are responsible for the establishment and running of two major centres in the School – the Ramaciotti Centre for Genomics offering expertise in next-generation sequencing and microarray technology, and the NSW Systems Biology Initiative, which is building capabilities and expertise in bioinformatics for genomics and proteomics.

Research areas for this group include:

  • Cholesterol and sterols
  • Mitochondrial metabolism
  • Genetics of neurodevelopmental disorders
  • Sex chromosome structure and evolution
  • Evolutionary genetics
  • Protein-protein interaction networks and systems biology
  • Cellular metabolis of cholesterol, obesity and diabetes