Professor Brendan Jenkins, NHMRC Senior Research Fellow

Professor Brendan Jenkins completed his PhD studies at the Hanson Institute in Adelaide, before undertaking postdoctoral research at the world-renowned Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, USA, and later the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research in Melbourne. In 2006, he established his own research group at Hudson Institute of Medical Research. He has continued to be at the forefront of research examining the roles cytokines and pattern recognition receptors (such as Toll-like receptors) play in human disease, namely cancer of the stomach (gastric cancer, the second most lethal cancer worldwide) and chronic inflammation (peritonitis, arthritis).

More recently, he has further expanded his research to include lung cancer (the most common and lethal cancer in the world) and emphysema/chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Collectively, his research programs incorporate long-standing collaborations with basic scientific researchers, industry and clinicians, both nationwide and overseas (UK, Japan, Singapore, Europe). Amongst his scientific achievements are publications in the highest-ranking science and medical research journals, including Cancer CellNature MedicineNatureImmunityJournal of Clinical InvestigationOncogene, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USABloodMolecular and Cellular Biology and Journal of Immunology.

In recognition of his research achievements, Professor Jenkins has held numerous fellowships (NHMRC RD Wright Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, Monash University Fellowship, Sylvia and Charles Viertel Senior Medical Research Fellowship, and currently an NHMRC Senior Research Fellowship), and has also received many national and international awards, including the Australian Institute for Policy and Science Tall Poppy Award. In addition, he has been awarded multiple project grants within Australia (NHMRC, Cancer Council) and overseas (Association for International Cancer Research), and is a regular invited speaker at local and international scientific meetings.

Selected publications

  • Deswaerte V, Nguyen P, West A, Browning AF, Yu L, Ruwanpura SM, Balic J, Livis T, Girard C, Preaude A, Oshima H, Fung KY, Tye H, Najdovska M, Ernst M, Oshima M, Gabay C, Putoczki T, Jenkins BJ (2018) Inflammasome adaptor ASC suppresses apoptosis of gastric cancer cells by an IL-18 mediated inflammation-independent mechanism. Cancer Res 78:1293-1307.

  • Fielding CA, Jones GW, McLoughlin RM, McLeod L, Hammond VJ, Uceda J, Williams AS, Lambie M, Foster TL, Liao CT, Rice CM, Greenhill CJ, Colmont CS, Hams E, Coles B, Kift-Morgan A, Newton Z, Craig KJ, Williams JD, Williams GT, Davies SJ, Humphreys IR, O’Donnell VB, Taylor PR, Jenkins BJ, Topley N, Jones SA (2014) Interleukin-6 signaling drives fibrosis in unresolved inflammation. Immunity 40:40-50.

  • Kennedy CL, Najdovska M, Tye H, McLeod L, Yu L, Jarnicki A, Bhathal PS, Putoczki T, Ernst M, Jenkins BJ (2014) Differential role of MyD88 and Mal/TIRAP in TLR2-mediated gastric tumourigenesis. Oncogene 33:2540-2546.

  • Yu L, Wu D, Gao H, Balic J, Tsykin A, Han T-S, Liu YD, Kennedy CL, Li JK, Mao JQ, Tan P, Oshima M, Goodall GJ, Jenkins BJ. (2018) Clinical utility of a STAT3-regulated microRNA-200 family signature with prognostic potential in early gastric cancer. Clin Cancer Res 24:1459-1472.

  • West A, Tang T, Tye H, Yu L, Deng N, Najdovska M, Lin SJ, Balic JJ, Okochi-Takada E, McGuirk P, Keogh B, McCormack W, Bhathal PS, Reilly M, Oshima M, Ushijima T, Tan P, Jenkins BJ (2017) Identification of a TLR2-regulated gene signature associated with tumor cell growth in gastric cancer. Oncogene 36:5134-5144

  • Berry W, Algar E, Kumar B, Desmond C, Swan M, Jenkins BJ*, Croagh D. (2017) Endoscopic ultrasound-guided fine-needle aspirate-derived preclinical pancreatic cancer models reveal panitumumab sensitivity in KRAS wild-type tumours. Int J Cancer 140:2331-2343. *Corresponding author

  • Brooks G, McLeod L, Alhayyani S, Miller A, Russell PA, Ferlin W, Rose-John S, Ruwanpura SM, Jenkins BJ. (2016) IL-6 trans-signaling promotes KRAS-driven lung carcinogenesis. Cancer Res 76:866-76.

  • Ruwanpura SM, McLeod L, Dousha LF, Seow HJ, Alhayyani S, Tate M, Deswaerte V, Brooks G, Bozinovski S, McDonald M, Garbers C, King PT, Bardin PG, Vlahos R, Rose-John S, Anderson GP, Jenkins BJ. (2016) Therapeutic targeting of the IL-6 trans-signaling/mTORC1 axis in pulmonary emphysema. Am J Respir Crit Care Med 194:1494-1505

  • Tye H, Kennedy CL, Najdovska M, McLeod L, McCormack W, Hughes N, Dev A, Sievert W, Ooi CH, Ishikawa TO, Oshima H, Bhathal PS, Parker AE, Oshima M, Tan P, Jenkins BJ (2012) STAT3-driven upregulation of TLR2 promotes gastric tumorigenesis independent of tumor inflammation. Cancer Cell 22:466-478.

  • Jenkins BJ, Grail D, Nheu T, Najdovska M, Wang B, Waring P, Inglese M, McLoughlin RM, Jones SA, Topley N, Baumann H, Judd LM, Giraud AS, Boussioutas A, Zhu HJ, Ernst M (2005) Hyperactivation of Stat3 in gp130 mutant mice promotes gastric hyperproliferation and desensitizes TGF-beta signaling. Nat Med 11:845-852.

  • Jones GW, Bombardieri M, Greenhill CJ, McLeod L, Rocher V, Williams AS, Pitzalis C, Jenkins BJ,* Jones SA* (2015) Interleukin-27 inhibits ectopic lymphoid-like structure development in early inflammatory arthritis. J Exp Med 212:1793-1802. *Equal contribution

  • Ernst M, Najdovska M, Grail D, Lundgren-May T, Buchert M, Tye H, Matthews VB, Armes J, Bhathal PS, Hughes NR, Marcusson EG, Karras JG, Na S, Sedgwick JD, Hertzog PJ, Jenkins BJ (2008) STAT3 and STAT1 mediate IL-11-dependent and inflammation-associated gastric tumorigenesis in gp130 receptor mutant mice. J Clin Invest 118:1727-1738.