Dr Siok Tey graduated from the University of Queensland in 1996 and completed her training in clinical and laboratory haematology in Brisbane in 2005. She completed a two-year research fellowship at the Center for Cell and Gene Therapy at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, USA, and then undertook a PhD in cytomegalovirus immunology at QIMR Berghofer. She received an NHMRC Early Career Research Fellowship (2013 – 16) and was appointed Team Head and Senior Research Fellow in 2017. Siok maintains active clinical practice as a senior staff specialist in clinical haematology and bone marrow transplantation at the Royal Brisbane & Women’s Hospital.
Current QIMR Berghofer appointment
- Senior research fellow (SRF-A)
Other current appointments
- Senior staff specialist, Department of Haematology and Bone Marrow Transplantation, Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital
- Clinician Research Fellow, Metro North Hospital and Health Service
- Medical Director, Q-Gen Cell Therapeutics, QIMR Berghofer Good Manufacturing Practice facility
- Adjunct Senior Lecturer , Faculty of Medicine, University of Queensland
- Adjunct Associate Professor, Faculty of Health, Queensland University of Technolog
- Research fellow, Center for Cell and Gene Therapy, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas, USA
Current Area of Research
The Translational Cancer Immunotherapy Laboratory studies the interaction between the immune response and tumour control, with a particular emphasis on translating our ever-expanding basic science knowledge into clinically applicable therapeutic platforms. It has particular interest and expertise in bone marrow transplantation and cell and gene therapy, and is currently one of only a few groups in Australia that are conducting investigator-driven clinical trials using in-house manufactured gene-modified T cells. The laboratory is currently researching better ways to purify and expand donor-derived regulatory T cells, with the aim of taking this to a phase I clinical trial in graft-versus-host disease, which is a common and life-threatening immune-related complication following bone marrow transplantation. It is also investigating other determinants of bone marrow transplant outcome, including the impact of cytokine signaling and viral infection, which can have both beneficial and deleterious impact on graft-versus-host disease and post-transplant cancer relapse. A growing focus of the laboratory is Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) T cell therapy, which is a new form of gene-modified cells used in the treatment of cancer. Research in this area spans basic science through to the clinical implementation of in-house CAR T cell manufacturing in collaboration with Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital.
- Phase I clinical trial using safety switch gene-modified T cells to improve the safety of bone marrow transplantation. This project established QIMR Berghofer with the capacity to manufacture gene-modified cells for use in clinical trials,
- Developed a method to sort-purify and genetically modify regulatory T cells (Tregs) for use in phase I clinical trial in patients with graft-versus-host disease
- Developed a preclinical model of cytomegalovirus latency and post-transplant reactivation to understand the interplay between cytomegalovirus and bone marrow transplant outcome.
- American Society for Transplantation and Cell Therapy
- American Society of Hematology
- Australasian Leukaemia & Lymphoma Group
- Haematology Society of Australia and New Zealand
- International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy
- Member of Editorial Board, Clinical and Translational Immunology, an official journal of Australasian Society for Immunology
- Member of Editorial Board, Blood Advances, an official journal of American Society of Hematology
- 2014: Clinical Researcher Award ‐ Australian Society of Medical Research Queensland
- 2011: Peter Doherty Award, Brisbane Immunology Group
- 2006: Young Investigator Award, Haematology Society of Australia and New Zealand
- 1996: University Medal, University of Queensland
- 1996: Lilian Cooper Prize, University of Queensland, for highest grade point average over the six years of the MBBS course
- 2012: PhD, University of Queensland
- 2005: Fellowship of Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia
- 2004: Fellow ship of Royal Australasian College of Physicians
- 1996: MBBS (Hons I), University of Queensland
Selected Key Publications
Dr Tey’s full publication list can be viewed at her:
- Zhang P, Raju J, Ullah MA, Au R, Varelias A, Gartlan KH, Olver SD, Samson LD, Sturgeon E, Zomerdijk N, Avery J, Gargett T, Brown MP, Coin LJ, Ganesamoorthy D, Hutchins C, Pratt GR, Kennedy GA, Morton AJ, Curley CI, Hill GR, Tey SK. Phase I Trial of Inducible Caspase 9 T Cells in Adult Stem Cell Transplant Demonstrates Massive Clonotypic Proliferative Potential and Long-term Persistence of Transgenic T Cells. Clin Cancer Res 2019;25:1749-55.
- Zhang P, Curley CI, Mudie K, Nakagaki M, Hill GR, Roberts JA, Tey SK. Effect of plasmapheresis on ATG (Thymoglobulin) clearance prior to adoptive T cell transfer. Bone Marrow Transplant 2019.
- Zhang P, Ganesamoorthy D, Nguyen SH, Au R, Coin LJ, Tey S-K. Analysis of polyclonal vector integration sites using Nanopore sequencing as a scalable, cost-effective platform. bioRxiv 2019:833897.
- Zhang P, Tey SK. Adoptive T Cell Therapy Following Haploidentical Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation. Front Immunol 2019;10:1854.
- Tey SK, Hill GR. Chronic Graft-Versus-Host Disease: Therapeutics at Last? . The Hematologist – American Society of Hematology News and Reports 2019;16:6 – 7.
- Martins JP, Andoniou CE, Fleming P, Kuns RD, Schuster IS, Voigt V, Daly S, Varelias A, Tey SK, Degli-Esposti MA, Hill GR. Strain-specific antibody therapy prevents cytomegalovirus reactivation after transplantation. Science 2019;363:288-93.
- Zhang P, Lee JS, Gartlan KH, Schuster IS, Comerford I, Varelias A, Ullah MA, Vuckovic S, Koyama M, Kuns RD, Locke KR, Beckett KJ, Olver SD, Samson LD, Montes de Oca M, de Labastida Rivera F, Clouston AD, Belz GT, Blazar BR, MacDonald KP, McColl SR, Thomas R, Engwerda CR, Degli-Esposti MA, Kallies A, Tey SK, Hill GR. Eomesodermin promotes the development of type 1 regulatory T (TR1) cells. Sci Immunol 2017;2.
- Ullah MA, Hill GR, Tey SK. Functional Reconstitution of Natural Killer Cells in Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation. Front Immunol 2016;7:144.
- Tey SK, Vuckovic S, Varelias A, Martins JP, Olver S, Samson L, Sturgeon E, Leach J, Avery J, Nakagaki M, Butler JP, Curley C, Morton AJ, Durrant ST, Kennedy GA, Hill GR. Pharmacokinetics and immunological outcomes of alemtuzumab-based treatment for steroid-refractory acute GvHD. Bone Marrow Transplant 2016;51:1153-5.
- Di Stasi A, Tey SK, Dotti G, Fujita Y, Kennedy-Nasser A, Martinez C, Straathof K, Liu E, Durett AG, Grilley B, Liu H, Cruz CR, Savoldo B, Gee AP, Schindler J, Krance RA, Heslop HE, Spencer DM, Rooney CM, Brenner MK. Inducible apoptosis as a safety switch for adoptive cell therapy. N Engl J Med 2011;365:1673-83.