Jenefer M. Blackwell
UWA Professor in Genetics and Health, Australia and University of Cambridge, UK
Presentation Title: Understanding pathogenesis of infectious disease through analyses of host genetic risk factors
Jenefer Blackwell (married name: Miles), BSc First Class Honors Zoology (1969) and PhD Population Genetics (1974) at UWA; F Med Sci (2000); Honorary DSc University of Khartoum (2009); ScD University of Cambridge (2010), FAA (2015) has a major interest in the genetic epidemiology of infectious disease.
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She transitioned from postdoc to Reader at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (1975-1991) and was recruited to Glaxo Chair for Molecular Parasitology at the University of Cambridge (1991). In Cambridge, she raised funds to build, and was Founding Director of, the Cambridge Institute for Medical Research (CIMR); http://www.cimr.cam.ac.uk/). Appointment to Cambridge also coincided with her role in promoting parasite genome projects. She chaired the WHO Leishmania Genome Consortium (1992-2003), promoting funding for genomic sequencing of L. major (Science, 2005), and establishing functional genomics including microarray expression profiling and screens for novel Leishmania vaccines. She has >300 scientific publications, including 195 original articles in refereed journals, 51 invited refereed reviews, 2 unsolicited reviews, 2 books, 22 invited book chapters, 15 consortium papers as a primary author (8x Nature Genetics; 1x Nature; 1x Nature Communications; 1x AJHG), and 31 other consortium papers. She has published primary paper from her lab in Nature, Nature Genetics, Science, PLoS Genet, Lancet Infect Dis, J Exp Med, J Immunol, J Infect Dis, Blood, J Biol Chem, Eur J Immunol, and many other high impact journals in her field. For 328 papers found in Google Scholar at 3 March 2017, she had 15,157 citations, average 46.21, H-index=66. Her contribution to tropical medicine recognized by the Chris Wright Medal (1994), the Leverhulme Medal (2000), election as a Fellow of the UK Academy of Medical Sciences (Fed Med Sci, 2000), Worldleish 5 – Lifetime Contribution Award 2013, and election as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science (FAA, 2015). In 2007 Jennie returned to Western Australia to establish a new Laboratory in Genetics and Health at the Telethon Kids Institute as a Professor of the University of Western Australia. She remains an Affiliated Principal Investigator at CIMR and Senior Scientist in the Department of Pathology at the University of Cambridge where she is currently funded by a UK Medical Research Grant to undertake a genomewide association analysis of cutaneous leishmaniasis from Brazil.