Professor Geraint Rogers

Matthew Flinders Fellow/Director SAHMRI Microbiome Research

College of Medicine and Public Health

place Flinders Medical Centre (5D:332)
GPO Box 2100, Adelaide 5001, South Australia

Dr Geraint Rogers is a molecular microbiologist and microbial ecologist. Geraint studied molecular microbiology at the University of Edinburgh, before completing a PhD at King’s College London developing culture independent molecular strategies to analysing chronic lung infections associated with cystic fibrosis. Geraint went on to work at King’s College London for nine years as a Senior Research Fellow, before moving to Brisbane in 2013 to take up as research position at the Mater Research Institute, University of Queensland.

Over this time, Geraint has established an extensive and unique research program focused on polymicrobial infection, with a particular focus on chronic bacterial infections of the lower respiratory tract. In addition, Geraint has active research projects focusing on various gastrointestinal conditions, upper respiratory infections, and liver dysfunction. The projects that he leads span from the basic science of microbe-microbe and microbe-host interaction, to randomised controlled trials of pharmacological and non-pharmacological disease interventions. The ultimate aim of his research programme is to improve our ability to understand and treat bacterial infection and dysbiosis.

Geraint joined SAHMRI in March 2013 to lead microbiome research within the Infection & Immunity theme, running a research laboratory at Flinders Medical School.

Qualifications

Bachelor of Science: University of Edinburgh, Scotland. 1999

PhD: Culture Independent Analysis of Cystic Fibrosis Lung Infection, King’s College London, 2004

Honours, awards and grants

Grant funding

  • NHMRC Project Grant - APP1044829 Clinical and psychosocial changes over late childhood and adolescence and early life determinants of long term clinical outcomes in cystic fibrosis $20,967.30 ($1,135,570.31) 2013-2015.
  • Douglas-Pennant Cystic Fibrosis Research Fellowship, 2013-2014 £48,000
  • Roche Organ Transplantation Research Foundation 2010, Microbial Diversity in Chronic Lung Allograft Dysfunction, AUS$ 170,000
  • The Anna Trust, 2008-2010, Characterisation of bacteria in cystic fibrosis respiratory specimens, Adult CF Centre Southampton, £40,000
  • The Anna Trust, 2006-2009, Sputum changes over time in infectious exacerbation Characterisation of bacteria in cystic fibrosis respiratory specimens, Adult CF Centre Southampton, £200,000

Current industrial partnerships and trials

  • Orbit-3 - International, multicentre, placebo-controlled randomised trial of inhaled liposomal and free ciprofloxacin 'DRCFI' in bronchiectasis subjects with pseudomonal infections. Aradigm.
  • N3RO – Randomised controlled trial of Oral administration of the omega-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Profs Collins and Gibson, University of Adelaide.

Awards

  • Respiratory Infectious Diseases Special Interest Group Award. TSANZ Annual Scientific Meeting, April 2014, Adelaide.
  • Abstract prize, European Respiratory Society Lung Science Conference, Estoril, Portugal, 2013
Research interests

Biomedical research is driven by the continuing need to improve patient care and treatment outcomes. Such improvements can be achieved through the refinement of existing therapeutic practices or through the application of novel anti-infective strategies. In either case, for this process to be effective, the establishment of close links between basic science and clinical application are essential.

With this aim, my research focuses on the application of technological and conceptual advances in the field of molecular microbiology to the characterisation and treatment of infections. This research can be divided into three principal themes; obtaining a better understanding of the human microbiota and the processes by which infections may become established; developing accurate and sensitive analytical systems capable of characterising infection dynamics; and using the insights obtained to design novel treatments for clinically important contexts. Here, advances in molecular microbiology have provided an unprecedented opportunity for progress.

A key element of my research has been the study of chronic bacterial infections of the lower respiratory tract, particularly those associated with cystic fibrosis lung disease. This has led to progress in our understanding of the microbial processes underpinning these infections, and also to the development of novel analytical tools and interpretative frameworks. These developments are highly transferable to other infective contexts, and the expansion of their applications now forms an important component of my current research.

Supervisory interests
Acute infection
Innate immunity
Higher degree by research supervision
Current
Principal supervisor: PhD - Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (1)
Associate supervisor: PhD - Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (5)
Completion
Principal supervisor: MPharm - Pharmacy (7), MSc - Forensic Science (1)
Associate supervisor: PhD - Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (1)
Publications
Further information

Geraint's team at Flinders School of Medicine

Lex Leong

Research Officer

Lex Leong is an early career microbiologist with an interest in anaerobic microbiology. After graduating from Monash University in 2008 with an honours degree in environmental microbiology, he was accepted into a PhD program under a joint supervision from CSIRO and the Australian Centre for Ecogenomics, and was awarded with the prestigious CSIRO Office of Chief Executive Postgraduate Scholarship. During his PhD degree, he focused in the characterisation of a novel anaerobic bacterium from the bovine rumen for its ability to degrade a toxic compound, fluoroacetate. Using his experience in the application of molecular tools for characterisation studies, Lex is interested in the human microbiome and the role played by individual microorganisms in various ecosystems in humans.

Jocelyn Choo

Research Officer

Jocelyn Choo is an early career microbiologist with a research interest in microbial genetics and microbial dynamics. She completed her Honours degree at Monash University and started her PhD studies in 2009, working under the supervision of Prof. Julian I. Rood and Dr. Milena M. Awad.

During her PhD degree, she focused on characterizing the heme uptake systems of an anaerobic bacterium that causes gas gangrene and understanding their importance in the pathogenesis of infection. Building upon her molecular biology and genetics background, she will apply these tools to investigate the association between the human microbiome on human health/diseases and drug therapies.