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

  • Miller A, Brooks GD, McLeod L, Ruwanpura S, Jenkins BJ (2015) Differential involvement of gp130 signalling pathways in modulating tobacco carcinogen-induced lung tumourigenesis. Oncogene 34:1510-1519.

  • 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.

  • Marusawa H, Jenkins BJ (2014) Inflammation and gastrointestinal cancer: an overview. Cancer Lett 345:153-156.

  • Jones GW, Greenhill CJ, Williams JO, Nowell MA, Williams AS, Jenkins BJ, Jones SA (2013) Exacerbated inflammatory arthritis in response to hyperactive gp130 signalling is independent of IL-17A. Ann Rheum Dis 72:1738-1742.

  • Mansell A, Jenkins BJ (2013) Dangerous liaisons between interleukin-6 cytokine and toll-like receptor families: a potent combination in inflammation and cancer. Cytokine Growth Factor Rev 24:249-256.

  • Tye H, Jenkins BJ (2013) Tying the knot between cytokine and toll-like receptor signaling in gastrointestinal tract cancers. Cancer Sci 104:1139-1145.

  • Ruwanpura SM, McLeod L, Miller A, Jones J, Vlahos R, Ramm G, Longano A, Bardin PG, Bozinovski S, Anderson GP, Jenkins BJ (2012) Deregulated Stat3 signaling dissociates pulmonary inflammation from emphysema in gp130 mutant mice. Am J Physiol Lung Cell Mol Physiol 302:L627-L639.

  • 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.

  • Greenhill CJ, Rose-John S, Lissilaa R, Ferlin W, Ernst M, Hertzog PJ, Mansell A, Jenkins BJ (2011) IL-6 trans-signaling modulates TLR4-dependent inflammatory responses via STAT3. J Immunol 186:1199-1208.

  • Kennedy CL, Najdovska M, Jones GW, McLeod L, Hughes NR, Allison C, Ooi CH, Tan P, Ferrero RL, Jones SA, Dev A, Sievert W, Bhathal PS, Jenkins BJ (2011) The molecular pathogenesis of STAT3-driven gastric tumourigenesis in mice is independent of IL-17. J Pathol 225:255-264.

  • Ruwanpura SM, McLeod L, Miller A, Jones J, Bozinovski S, Vlahos R, Ernst M, Armes J, Bardin PG, Anderson GP, Jenkins BJ (2011) Interleukin-6 promotes pulmonary emphysema associated with apoptosis in mice. Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol 45:720-730.

  • 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.

  • Fielding CA, McLoughlin RM, McLeod L, Colmont CS, Najdovska M, Grail D, Ernst M, Jones SA, Topley N, Jenkins BJ (2008) IL-6 regulates neutrophil trafficking during acute inflammation via STAT3. J Immunol 181:2189-2195.

  • 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.