Research
“Very little happens in any biological system unless two or more molecules come together to form a stable complex.”
W. David Wilson, Science 2002
Understanding biomolecular interactions is crucial to understanding the function of organisms, both in health and disease.

Biomolecular interactions of macromolecules are inherently difficult to characterise.

Emerging Lab-on-a-Chip (LoC) devices provide a promising platform technology for new analytical tools to study these interactions.

We develop new micro-technological platforms to answer fundamental questions on the interaction of key biomolecules.
  • Origin of force generation in oomycetes/fungi (Marsden Fast-Start UOC1504, in collaboration with Ashley Garrill )

  • Chemotaxis in bacteria to sense soil contamination (in collaboration with Monica Gerth )


  • Interaction of stem cells with surface patterns (BIC/College of Engineering Postdoc, in collaboration with Maan Alkaisi )
  • Pheromone detection for invasive species management (MBIE funding, in collaboration with Stephen Pawson )

  • Bacterial communities in plant diseases (Marsden Fast-Start UOC1704, in collaboration with Mitja Remus Emsermann )



  • Antibody interactions to detect blood agglutination (UC Tech JumpStart 2016, in collaboration with Renwick Dobson )

  • Use of laminar flow microfluidics to study enzymatic reactions (BIC/CI PhD Scholarship, in collaboration with Grant Pearce and Renwick Dobson )
  • Beyond myrtle rust: Next-generation tools to ‘engineer’ forest ecosystem resilience to plant pathogens (MBIE Endeavour Programme, in collaboration with Landcare and Plant & Food )



  • Development of a simple, general and novel assay platform for detecting and quantifying analytes in nonlaboratory
    settings (MBIE Smart Idea grant, in collaboration with 
    Renwick Dobson and Conan Fee )


In addition to developing new assay platforms, my group also works on the next generation of materials and fabrication techniques which help to advance these devices. Current projects involve:
  • Fabrication of phononic metamaterials for next generation thermal insulation (in collaboration with Emilio Calius)
  • Through-Mask Electrochemical Micromachining (TMEM) of aluminum in phosphoric acid (in collaboration with Aaron Marshall )