Joshua S. Mylne, Ph.D.

Australian Research Council Future Fellow

I started my scientific career with a PhD in Arabidopsis molecular biology under the supervision of Jimmy Botella within the Department of Botany at the University of Queensland. My first post-doc was with Professor Caroline Dean at the John Innes Centre (Norwich, UK) where I acquired skills in developmental genetics and epigenetics. When I returned to Australia in 2006 I made a radical switch by joining a Chemistry & Structural Biology Division within the Institute for Molecular Bioscience - a principally biomedical research institute. To choose to surround myself with peptide chemists and protein structural biologists was unorthodox, but in retrospect a wise career decision. With my QEII fellowship I used multi-disciplinary approaches spanning NMR and classical Arabidopsis genetics to understand peptide biosynthesis and plant biochemistry. In 2013 I founded my first lab at UWA and took up an ARC Future Fellowship.

I have produced 42 papers since my PhD in 2002. I have produced high quality research throughout my career and was named by the Australian Society of Plant Scientists as the 2012 receipient of the Peter Goldacre Award and was chosen by the Feinberg Foundation as a Visiting Faculty Program Fellow to the Weizmann Institute in Israel in 2014. My papers have been cited over 3,082 times, with an average above 70 citations per paper and of these citations, less than 3% are self-citation. The last five years I have been cited, on average, 265 times per year and my H-index is 21. My first post-doctoral stint in England was extremely productive, publishing articles including ones in Science, Nature, PNAS, Current Biology and two in Plant Cell. Many of these are cited such that they rank among the top 1% or top 0.1% of articles in the field of Plant and Animal Sciences.

Since returning from the UK I have published over 35 papers (Plant Cell, 2006; Biopolymers, 2008; Phytochemistry, 2008; Acta Crystallogr. F, 2009; Org. Biomol. Chem., 2009; BMC Genomics, 2010; Cell. Mol. Life Sci., 2010; Biopolymers, 2010; Plant Methods, 2011; Biomol. NMR Assign., 2012; J. Proteome Res., 2011; Exp. Opin. Drug. Disc., 2012; JBC, 2012; Plant Cell, 2012; JBC, 2013; Genes Dev., 2013; Fitoterapia, 2014; Plant Cell, 2014; Funct. Plant Biol., 2014; Plant Methods, 2014; Mol. Biol. Evol., 2015; Org. Biomol. Chem., 2015; Chem. Biol., 2015; JBC, 2016; Theor. Appl. Genet., 2016; JBC, 2016; J. Proteomics, 2016; Biopolymers, 2016; Amino Acids, 2017; New Phytologist, 2017) as well as corresponded cover articles to Plant Cell (Elliott et al., 26:981-995) the leading primary research journal in plant biology, Cell Press's high impact Chemistry & Biology (Bernath-Levin et al., 22:571-582). I have also corresponded two articles to Nature Chemical Biology (Mylne et al. 7:257-259; Mylne & Wigge 7:665-666), the leading primary research journal in chemical biology and ranked 4th of 286 journals in the field of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology.

As the first-named investigator I have won 17 grants with a total value of $AUD 3.2 million including nationally competitive fellowships (QEII, Future) and research grants (DP12, DP13, DP16) from the Australian Research Council. As a named investigator I have also helped attract an additional $1.2 million in funding from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (UK), ARC and the NHMRC.

The research I am pursuing now and into the future is a unique, and I think exciting, blend of genetics and biochemistry. My post-doctoral training in molecular genetics and recent training in biochemistry and structural biology during my QEII fellowship has equipped me to bring all these approaches to bear on problems which will help us better understand genes, proteins and drugs. I encourage anyone similarly interested in multidisciplinary research to considering joining my group at UWA.

Position History:

2017-ongoing Senior Lecturer, School of Molecular Sciences and (affiliated to) The ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Energy Biology, The University of Western Australia (UWA), Crawley, Perth, Australia; 2013-2016 Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellow, School of Chemistry & Biochemistry and (jointly) ARC CoE in Plant Energy Biology; 2013-2015 Adjunct Associate Professor, IMB, UQ, Brisbane, Australia; 2010-2012 John S. Mattick Fellow, IMB, UQ, Brisbane, Australia; 2008-2012 Australian Research Council QEII Fellow, Division of Chemistry & Structural Biology, Institute for Molecular Bioscience (IMB), The University of Queensland, St Lucia, Brisbane, Australia; 2008-2012 Australian Army Specialist Service Officer, Research Scientist, Army Malaria Institute, Enoggera, Brisbane, Australia; 2007 UQ Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, IMB; 2006 Post-Doctoral Research Officer with David Craik, IMB; 2001-2005 Project Scientist with Caroline Dean, Department of Cell & Developmental Biology, John Innes Centre, Norwich, UK; 2001 Visiting Scholar with Victoriano Valpuesta, Universidad de Málaga, Spain (3 months); 1999-2000 Visiting Scholar with Philip Benfey, New York University, Manhattan, USA (3 months); 1997-2001 PhD Student with Jimmy Botella, Department of Botany, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.


Amy M. James, M.Sc.

PhD student

I completed my Honours degree and Master of Science at the University of Victoria, BC, Canada studying regulation of secondary metabolism in poplar. With an interest in evolution and a goal of diversifying my skillset, I joined the lab of Joshua Mylne in 2014. Here I have developed skills and knowledge in the areas of molecular biology, recombinant protein purification, protein evolution, and protein interaction studies.

My research investigates interesting examples of protein evolution in plants. In addition to my research, I enjoy participating in science communication activities, demonstrating in undergraduate laboratories, and helping other students in the lab.