Our People

Andreas Suhrbier

Professor | Group Leader

Inflammation Biology

+617 3362 0415

Andreas.Suhrbier@qimrberghofer.edu.au

CAREER HISTORY

Professor Andreas Suhrbier did his first post-doc at Imperial College of Science and Technology, London, UK (1986-1989) working on the liver stage of malaria. He came to Australia in 1990 on a Royal Society Fellowship and Wellcome Trust Advanced Training Fellowship in Tropical Medicine.  From 1992−2000, he was appointed as a lecturer at the Australian Centre for International & Tropical Health & Nutrition.  During 1994−2003, Professor Suhrbier was a program and project leader, member of the Scientific Advisory Committee and Research and/or Development Advisory Committee of the Co-operative Research Center for Vaccine Technology. 

In 2000, he became a Group Leader and now leads the Inflammation Biology Group at QIMR Berghofer.  Since 2004, Professor Suhrbier has been a Research Fellow with the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) of Australia and in 2019, he was awarded an Investigator grant from the NHMRC (Impact option: 100% Economic). 

Professor Suhrbier is an inventor on 18 awarded international patents: 13 have been commercialised, 11 led to human clinical trials, one covers ISCOM vaccines, five support Picato (http://bit.ly/39mUWhK).  During his career, he has been a consultant for Sementis, Valneva, Abivax, Leo Pharma, GSK, Paradigm, WHO, Aventis Pasteur, CSL, Bavarian Nordic, Peplin and C-Bio.

 

CURRENT APPOINTMENTS

 

PREVIOUS APPOINTMENTS

  • Research Officer, Imperial College of Science and Technology, London, UK

 

ORCID NUMBER

0000-0001-8986-9025

 

CURRENT AREA OF RESEARCH

The Inflammation Biology Group has developed, refined and characterised a number of mouse models used to gain new insights into the factors that regulate viral infection and inflammatory disease.  The models are also exploited for collaborative R&D with industry to test potential new interventions (e.g. vaccines, anti-inflammatory drugs, anti-viral agents). 

The group has over 25 years of activity in improving our understanding of the immunopathogenesis of the diseases cause by arthritogenic alphaviruses such as chikungunya virus and Ross River virus.  We have also developed mouse models of Zika virus (foetal brain infection and testes damage) and Yellow fever virus liver pathology, which have been used in the development of vaccines and characterisation of pathogenic determinants.

Very recently, we repurposed a PC3 laboratory and have started to undertake research into SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 using transgenic hACE2 mice.

 

RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS

  • invented and patented the polytope approach for delivery of multiple cytotoxic T cell epitopes in 1996, licensed to CSL (Australia) and Bavarian Nordic (Denmark)
  • conducted the first longitudinal prospective study of Ross River virus disease in 2002, which debunked the myth that this condition lasts for years and resulted in a major change in clinical practice
  • inventor on five patents which support the product Picato for treating actinic keratosis, acquired by LEO Pharma for A$348.4 million in 2009 and listed in the repatriation of pharmaceutical benefits scheme in 2013 (http://bit.ly/39mUWhK)
  • developed an equine IgG post-exposure prophylactic in 2017 that successfully prevented morbidity and mortality in non-human primates after infection with a lethal dose of Ebola virus
  • used a Systems Biology approach to characterise a mouse model of chikungunya virus infection and disease, subsequently shown to recapitulate inflammatory pathways seen in humans and resulted in a series of commercial R&D contracts (e.g. GSK, Valneva)
  • demonstrated, in mouse models and non-human primates (2018-2020), the utility of Sementis’s (Australian biotech), vaccinia-based, multiplication-defected vaccine vector system for generating protective vaccines against Zika virus and chikungunya virus
  • in collaboration with University of Queensland (Australian Infectious Disease Research Centre), illustrated in 2019-2020 the utility of the patented chimeric Binjari virus technology for generating vaccines for Zika virus and Yellow fever virus
  • 2014-15: lead in a case study for the Pilot Program assessing the Defence Trade Controls Act 2012, which significantly influenced federal legislation and substantially minimized the considerable negative impacts on Australian medical research of the DTC Act (2012), leading to the Defence Trade Controls Amendment Act (2015)

 

PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIPS

2011-2019: Scientific Advisory Board, Sementis Pty Ltd (Australia)

 

AWARDS RECOGNITION

2014: Named on the 2014 NHMRC External Project Grant Assessor Outstanding Contribution Honour Roll

2010: Eureka Award Finalist. Category: Medical Research Translation (The Industry & Investment NSW Jamie Callachor Eureka Prize).  A new anti-cancer drug from radium weed.  Aylward, Suhrbier, Parsons, Cozzi, Ogbourne

 

EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND

1982-1985: PhD received 31 January 1986. Title: The conservation and formation of desmosomes, PhD Supervisor: Dr DR Garrod. CRC Medical Oncology Unit, Southampton General Hospital Southampton Hants UK

1978-1982: BA Biochemistry (Honours). New College, University of Oxford: Open Scholar (awarded to top 5% of accepted students after entrance exam)