Dr Wilson Wong, NHMRC Investigator Fellow (Emerging Leadership Level 2)
- Role: Research Group HeadGroup: Structural Biology of Inflammation and Cancer
Auto-inflammatory disorders, cancers and telomere biology disorders are caused by inherited mutations and affect millions of Australians and nationalities worldwide. I investigate how mis-regulated inflammation and cell proliferation drives these disorders with the aim of developing treatments for patients.
Dr Wong’s research focuses on understanding how inherited mutations cause auto-inflammatory disorders of the skin, lung, bowel and brain, ultimately to inform new treatments for patients.
A structural biologist, Dr Wong specialises in visualising protein structures and elucidating the mechanisms of drug action. Through these structural studies, the function of proteins and the associated disease processes can be understood at the atomic level, providing valuable information for drug development.
Dr Wong’s research focus is on investigating the function of small molecular machines in cells that control inflammation and cellular aging. Electron microscopy is used to visualise high-resolution images of these molecular machines to understand their functions, and how potential drugs could interact and alter their activities.
Dr Wong’s research interest is understanding the functions of inflammasomes and telomeres and how disease-causing mutations change the inflammatory and proliferative capacity of cells. This involves
- Visualising the structures of protein complexes
- Understanding how mutations alter their structures and functions
- Investigating how small molecules could inhibit their activities.
In the past 10 years Dr Wong’s research has contributed to the understanding and treatment of malaria infection and understanding the structures of malaria vaccine candidates for development. Extending this work, Dr Wong is investigating the parasite factors that activate the inflammatory processes that lead to disease pathologies.
Dr Wong has received significant funding from the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) through the award of a Peter Doherty Fellowship and a current NHMRC Investigator fellowship.
Education | Dr Wilson Wong
|2004||Bachelor of Science (1st class Honours)||Monash University||Melbourne|
|2003||Bachelor of Biomedical Science||Griffith University||Gold Coast|
Awards and Fellowships | Dr Wilson Wong
|2021-2025||Investigator Fellowship (EL2)||NHMRC|
|2019||Burnet Prize||Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research|
|2013-2016||Peter Doherty Fellowship||NHMRC|
|2007-2010||Monash Faculty PhD Scholarship||ARC Centre of Excellence for Structural and Functional Microbial Genomics|
|Adjunct Senior Research Fellow||Monash University|
Wong W*, Huang R*, Menant S, Hong C, Sandow JJ, Birkinshaw RW, Healer J, Hodder AN, Kanjee U, Tonkin CJ, Heckmann D, Soroka V, Sogaard TMM, Jorgensen T, Duraisingh MT, Czabotar PE, Jongh WAd, Tham WH, Webb AI, Yu Z, Cowman AF. (2019) Structure of Plasmodium falciparum Rh5-CyRPA-Ripr invasion complex, Nature. 565: 118-121. *co-first author
Wong W*, Bai XC*, Sleeb BE*, Triglia T*, Brown A, Thompson JK, Jackson KE, Hanssen E, Marapana DS, Fernandez IS, Ralph SA, Cowman AF, Scheres SHW, Baum J. (2017) Mefloquine targets the Plasmodium falciparum 80S ribosome to inhibit protein synthesis. Nature Microbiology 2 Article number: 17031. *co-first author
Wong W*, Bai XC*, Brown A*, Fernandez IS, Hanssen E, Condron M, Tan YH, Baum J, Scheres SH. (2014) Cryo-EM structure of the Plasmodium falciparum 80S ribosome bound to the anti-protozoan drug emetine eLife 3 – P12695994, *co-first author
Wong W, Skau CT, Marapana DS, Hanssen E, Taylor NL, Riglar DT, Zuccala ES, Angrisano F, Lewis H, Catimel B, Clarke OB, Kershaw NJ, Perugini MA, Kovar DR, Gulbis JM, Baum J. (2011) Minimal requirements for actin filament disassembly revealed by structural analysis of malaria parasite Actin Depolymerizing Factor 1, PNAS 108(24):9869-74.