Dr Jennifer Dowling

Dr Jennifer Dowling is a Senior Postdoctoral Researcher at Hudson Institute of Medical Research, specialising in the inflammatory complexes underlying infectious and inflammatory diseases, including multiple sclerosis (MS), sepsis and highly virulent strains of influenza. Dr Dowling has a passionate interest in medical research. She chose to work in inflammation because it has a central role in the progression of a range of diseases, from multiple sclerosis to autoimmune diseases and cancer.

After obtaining a Bachelor of Science in Biotechnology in 2005 from Dublin City University, Ireland, Dr Dowling pursued her PhD in Immunology at Dublin City University on the role of fatty acids in signalling of the key innate immune receptor Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4). From 2009-2013, she worked as a postdoctoral researcher with leading researcher Professor Luke O’Neill in Trinity College Dublin, focused on understanding the mechanisms regulating a key inflammatory complex in immune cells known as the inflammasome.

She was subsequently recruited to the Centre for Innate Immunity and Infectious Diseases at Hudson Institute of Medical Research under the supervision of Associate Professor Ashley Mansell to continue her work in the field of toll-like receptor and inflammasome signalling. Dr Dowling’s main research interest is a vital group of cells in the immune system known as macrophages. These key inflammatory cells work to protect our bodies from infections like E.coli and influenza, but in chronic inflammatory diseases such as multiple sclerosis, arthritis and psoriasis, these cells dysfunction and work against the body to progress the disease.

Dr Dowling is also passionate about community engagement, science communication and educating the next generation about the importance of medical research and the role of inflammation in disease. In 2016, Dr Dowling organised a Day of Immunology Discovery Tour for a group of year 10 students from the John Monash Science School. She supervises PhD and Honours students at Hudson Institute, was on the organising committee for the Hudson Institute Graduate Research Expo, and engages in key public speaking events, including to students at Mentone Girls Grammar School.

Selected publications

  • Pinar, A.#, Dowling, J.K.#, Bitto, N.J., Robertson, A.A., Latz, E., Stewart, C.R., Drummond, G.R., Cooper, M.A., McAuley, J.L., Tate, M.D., and Mansell, A. (2017) PB1-F2 Peptide Derived from Avian Influenza A Virus H7N9 Induces Inflammation via Activation of the NLRP3 Inflammasome. J.Biol.Chem. 292, 826-836. #Equal Contribution

  • Tate, M.D., Ong, J.D., Dowling, J.K., McAuley, J.L., Robertson, A.B., Latz, E., Drummond, G.R., Cooper, M.A., Hertzog, P.J., and Mansell, A. (2016) Reassessing the role of the NLRP3 inflammasome during pathogenic influenza A virus infection via temporal inhibition. Sci.Rep. 6, 27912

  • Krishnan, S.M., Dowling, J.K., Ling, Y.H., Diep, H., Chan, C.T., Ferens, D., Kett, M.M., Pinar, A., Samuel, C.S., Vinh, A., Arumugam, T.V., Hewitson, T.D., Kemp-Harper, B.K., Robertson, A.A., Cooper, M.A., Latz, E., Mansell, A., Sobey, C.G., and Drummond, G.R. (2016) Inflammasome activity is essential for one kidney/deoxycorticosterone acetate/salt-induced hypertension in mice. Br.J.Pharmacol. 173, 752-765

  • Dowling, J.K., Becker, C.E., Bourke, N.M., Corr, S.C., Connolly, D.J., Quinn, S.R., Pandolfi, P.P., Mansell, A., and O’Neill, L.A. (2014) Promyelocytic leukemia protein interacts with the apoptosis-associated speck-like protein to limit inflammasome activation. J.Biol.Chem. 289, 6429-6437

  • Canavan, M., McCarthy, C., Larbi, N.B., Dowling, J.K., Collins, L., O’Sullivan, F., Hurley, G., Murphy, C., Quinlan, A., Moloney, G., Darby, T., MacSharry, J., Kagechika, H., Moynagh, P., Melgar, S., and Loscher, C.E. (2014) Activation of liver X receptor suppresses the production of the IL-12 family of cytokines by blocking nuclear translocation of NF-kappaBp50. Innate Immun. 20, 675-687

  • Dowling, J.K., McCoy, C.E., Doyle, S.L., BenLarbi, N., Canavan, M., O’Neill, L.A., and Loscher, C.E. (2013) Conjugated linoleic acid suppresses IRF3 activation via modulation of CD14. J.Nutr.Biochem. 24, 920-928

  • Court, N., Rose, S., Bourigault, M.L., Front, S., Martin, O.R., Dowling, J.K., Kenny, E.F., O’Neill, L., Erard, F., and Quesniaux, V.F. (2011) Mycobacterial PIMs inhibit host inflammatory responses through CD14-dependent and CD14-independent mechanisms. PLoS One. 6, e24631

  • Ryan, A., Lynch, M., Smith, S.M., Amu, S., Nel, H.J., McCoy, C.E., Dowling, J.K., Draper, E., O’Reilly, V., McCarthy, C., O’Brien, J., Ni Eidhin, D., O’Connell, M.J., Keogh, B., Morton, C.O., Rogers, T.R., Fallon, P.G., O’Neill, L.A., Kelleher, D., and Loscher, C.E. (2011) A role for TLR4 in Clostridium difficile infection and the recognition of surface layer proteins. PLoS Pathog. 7, e1002076

  • Wilson, S.J., Dowling, J.K., Zhao, L., Carnish, E., and Smyth, E.M. (2007) Regulation of thromboxane receptor trafficking through the prostacyclin receptor in vascular smooth muscle cells: role of receptor heterodimerization. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 27, 290-6

  • Reviews:

    Dowling, J.K., and Mansell, A. (2016) Toll-like receptors: the swiss army knife of immunity and vaccine development. Clin.Transl.Immunology. 5, e85

  • Dowling, J.K., and O’Neill, L.A. (2012) Biochemical regulation of the inflammasome. Crit.Rev.Biochem.Mol.Biol. 47, 424-443

  • Book Chapters:

    Dowling, J.K., and DELLACASAGRANDE, J. (2016) Toll-Like Receptors: Ligands, Cell-Based Models and Readouts for Receptor Action. Vol. 1390