Wallace Bridge

Associate Professor

Research

I have 33 years academic and industrial experience in bioprocessing-based R&D in Australia and overseas (Italy and UK). My major research areas have included: ethanol; cephalosporin C, nisin, thiol antioxidants; isoprenoids; glycosidic enzymes; lactic acid bacteria (dairy starter cultures and probiotics), bakers yeast; yeast extract manufacture; and microbial biotransformations and biocatalysis. I also dabbled in immunology in recent years, which led to a UNSW filed PCT patent application for a protein(HLA)-based tissue typing invention. My current ongoing research activities are in the fields of biocatalysis and bacteriophage-mediated biocontrol.

Biocatalysis

A patent-protected biocatalytic-based process for the manufacture of gamma-linked peptides developed by my research group is in the final stages of commercialisation. A factory for the manufacture of gamma glutamylcysteine has recently been built in Houston, Texas, and is currently being commissioned. By late 2018, it is planned to commence the marketing and retail sale of GGC-based products in the US. The GGC dipeptide is the immediate precursor to the tripeptide glutathione, which is commonly referred to as the master antioxidant as it is produced and used by almost all aerobic cells from bacteria through to humans. Many diseases and disorders - and even ageing itself - are associated with oxidative stress caused by lowered cellular glutathione levels (homeostasis). The exposure to high levels of free radicals, in particular reactive oxygen species (ROS), oxidises lipids, proteins and nucleic acids. This damages cell physiology and leads to loss of cell function and ultimately cell death (apoptosis). As GGC can systemically elevate cellular glutathione content (as confirmed in a UNSW-sponsored human clinical trial), it has a broad range of potential applications as an active ingredient in dietary supplements, cosmetics and functional foods, and possibly as a therapeutic for a large range of clinical disorders and diseases. My group's ongoing research at UNSW continues to work towards advancing the GGC manufacturing process, and to use various in vitro and in vivo models to investigate and define the therapeutic potential of GGC.

Bacteriophage-mediated biocontrol

Bacteria contamination is a significant, difficult-to-control problem in many industrial fermentation processes and in the manufacture of processed foods. To address this, my research group is partnering with industry and other research groups to develop the use of bacteriophage as biocontrol agents to limit contamination levels. 

Education

I have a long-held passion for ensuring that UNSW science students are educated in business so that they can enhance their career preparedness and flexibility, and their future value to employers and society in general.  Since 1999, I have been involved in the establishment of business and professional skill-based undergraduate and postgraduate courses and programs specifically designed for the science student. Currently, I am the Director of the undergraduate Biotechnology program (3053), a degree that covers fundamental science and the technologies it enables, and the translational processes involved in taking a science-based idea through to a marketable product. Over the years, I have collaborated with numerous international tertiary institutes to develop and teach science innovation courses and programs. 

Qualifications

  • BSc (Microbiology and Genetics). University of Sydney. 1984
  • MAppSc (Biotechnology). UNSW. 1989
  • PhD (Bioprocess Engineering). UNSW. 1993

Awards and Achievements

  • 2017: BABS Titans of Teaching award - Best student-rated Semester 1 Lecturer
  • 2017: BABS Titans of Teaching award - Best student-rated Semester 1 small course (BABS3071)
  • 2015: BABS Titans of Teaching award - Best student-rated Semester 1 small course (BABS3071)
  • 2013: BABS Outstanding Contributor Award
  • 2008: Australian Learning and Teaching Council Citation
  • 2007 UNSW Australian School of Business Faculty Entrepreneur Award
Journal articles
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Damnjanovic D; Vázquez-Campos X; Winter DL; Harvey M; Bridge WJ, 2020, 'Bacteriophage genotyping using BOXA repetitive-PCR', BMC Microbiology, vol. 20, pp. 154, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12866-020-01770-2
2020
Damnjanovic D; Harvey M; Bridge WJ, 2019, 'Application of colony BOXA2R-PCR for the differentiation and identification of lactic acid COCCI', Food Microbiology, vol. 82, pp. 277 - 286, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.fm.2019.02.011
2019
Braidy N; Zarka M; Jugder B-E; Welch J; Jayasena T; Chan DKY; Sachdev P; Bridge W, 2019, 'The Precursor to Glutathione (GSH), γ-Glutamylcysteine (GGC), Can Ameliorate Oxidative Damage and Neuroinflammation Induced by Aβ40 Oligomers in Human Astrocytes', Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, vol. 11, pp. 1 - 1, http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fnagi.2019.00177
2019
Zarka MH; Bridge WJ, 2017, 'Oral administration of γ-glutamylcysteine increases intracellular glutathione levels above homeostasis in a randomised human trial pilot study', Redox Biology, vol. 11, pp. 631 - 636, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.redox.2017.01.014
2017
Bridge W, 2017, 'The Struggle to Establish Bioentrepreneurship Education Programs: An Australian Perspective', Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship, vol. 4, http://dx.doi.org/10.2174/2213809904666170809145045
2017
Cao P; Braidy N; Zarka M; Welch J; Bridge W, 2016, 'Therapeutic Approaches to Modulating Glutathione Levels as a Pharmacological Strategy in Alzheimer's Disease (vol 12, pg 298, 2015)', CURRENT ALZHEIMER RESEARCH, vol. 13, pp. 1198 - 1198, http://dx.doi.org/10.2174/156720501310160825221218
2016
Ferguson G; Bridge W, 2016, 'Glutamate cysteine ligase and the age-related decline in cellular glutathione: The therapeutic potential of γ-glutamylcysteine.', Arch Biochem Biophys, vol. 593, pp. 12 - 23, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.abb.2016.01.017
2016
Braidy N; Zarka M; Welch J; Bridge W, 2015, 'Therapeutic approaches to modulating glutathione levels as a pharmacological strategy in Alzheimer’s disease', Current Alzheimer Research, vol. 12, pp. 298 - 313, http://dx.doi.org/10.2174/1567205012666150302160308
2015
Braidy N; Essa MM; Bridge WB; Subash SS; Manivasagam TM; Vijayan RKV; Al-Adawi SA; Guillemin GG, 2014, 'REVIEW OF NATURAL PRODUCTS ON PARKINSON’S DISEASE PATHOLOGY', Journal of Aging Research & Clinical Practice, vol. 3, pp. 127 - 136
2014
Bridge WJ; Chandler SD; Zarka M; Vinaya Babu SN; Suhas Y; Raghunatha Reddy K, 2012, 'Safety assessment of gamma-glutamylcysteine sodium salt', Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology, vol. 64, pp. 17 - 25, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.yrtph.2012.05.008
2012
Hine D; Barnard R; Rifkin W; Bridge W; Franco C; Schmidt L; MacKinnon P, 2008, 'University biotechnology education in Australia in an international context', JOURNAL OF BIOTECHNOLOGY, vol. 136, pp. S770 - S770, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbiotec.2008.07.1665
2008
Boonmee M; Leksawasdi N; Bridge WJ; Rogers PL, 2007, 'Electrodialysis for lactate removal in the production of the dairy starter culture Lactococcus lactis NZ133', International Journal of Food Science and Technology, vol. 42, pp. 567 - 572, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2621.2006.01276.x
2007
Boonmee M; Leksawasdi N; Bridge WJ; Rogers PL, 2003, 'Batch and continuous culture of Lactococcus lactis NZ133: experimental data and model development', Biochemical Engineering Journal, vol. 14, pp. 127 - 135, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S1369-703X(02)00171-7
2003
Hewson CK; Capraro A; Wong SL; Pandzic E; Fernando BSM; Awatade NT; Zhong L; Hart-Smith G; Whan RM; Thomas SR; Jaffe A; Bridge WJ; Waters SA, 'Novel antioxidant therapy with the immediate precursor to glutathione, γ-glutamylcysteine (GGC), ameliorates LPS-induced cellular stress in an in vitro cystic fibrosis model', , http://dx.doi.org/10.1101/2020.05.27.119990
Conference Abstracts
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Braidy N; Poljak A; Zarka M; Bridge W; Sachdev P, 2013, 'γ-glutamylcysteine (GGC)-mediated upregulation of glutathione levels can ameliorate toxicity of natural beta-amyloid oligomers in primary adult human neurons [Abstract P4-332]', in Alzheimer's & Dementia, Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) 2013, Boston, MA, USA, Vol. 9, pp. P854 - P854, presented at Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) 2013, Boston, MA, USA, 13 July 2013 - 18 July 2013, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jalz.2013.08.166
2013
Books
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Hine D; Barnard R; Rifkin WD; Bridge WJ; Franco C; Schmidt LC; MacKinnon P, 2008, Extending teaching and learning initiatives in the cross-disciplinary field of Biotechnology: Carrick Discipline-Based Initiatives Scheme 2007, Original, The Carrick Institute for Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, Brisbane, Australia
2008

Science based innovation management education