Our keynote speakers

Distinguished Professor Catherine Costello

Catherine E. Costello is a William Fairfield Warren Distinguished Professor at Boston University, with appointments in the Depts. of Biochemistry & Cell Biology; Pharmacology, Physiology & Biophysics; and Chemistry. She graduated from Emmanuel College, Boston, and earned her MS and PhD at Georgetown University, Washington, DC. She was a postdoctoral fellow and then became Associate Director of the NIH Mass Spectrometry Resource at MIT. In 1994, she founded the BU School of Medicine Center for Biomedical Mass Spectrometry. Her research centers on development of MS-based instrumentation and methods for the analysis of biopolymers, particularly focusing on glycobiology, protein post-translational modifications, and bioactive lipids, in order to elucidate pathways and interactions whose understanding can aid in the diagnosis and development of more effective treatments for infectious diseases, protein misfolding and cardiovascular disorders, and cancers, as well as in maintaining health. She has authored more than 400 scientific papers. She served as President of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry (ASMS), the International Human Proteome Organization (HUPO), and the International Mass Spectrometry Foundation (IMSF). She has received the ACS Field & Franklin Award, the ASMS Distinguished Contribution Award and the IMSF Thomson Medal, and is a Fellow of ACS and AAAS. US-HUPO presents the annual Lifetime Achievement in Proteomics Award in her name

CEC for AGS JPG

Professor Cathy Merry

I am Professor of Stem Cell Glycobiology at the Biodiscovery Institute, University of Nottingham, UK and Visiting Professor of Proteoglycan Research, Uppsala University, Sweden, with an area of expertise in matrix biology, proteoglycans and developmental biology. I lead a lively, dynamic, interdisciplinary research group that is discovering previously unknown mechanistic regulation of cell behaviour by glycans in health and disease and, more broadly, the role of the pericellular matrix in controlling cell behaviour. To do this, we create stem cell-based tools and novel 3D culture environments that now support large collaborative research projects in cancer and inherited rare disease modelling. I currently sit on the board of the National Centre for the Refinement, Replacement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs) in the UK and am passionate about improving the quality of in vitro alternatives to the use of animals in research. Publications over the past 5 years have included the first report of defects in an enzyme of the heparan sulphate pathway in humans (HS2ST) as well as multiple in vitro models for glioblastoma and medulloblastoma. In partnership with local colleagues, we continue to develop of a novel glycan analysis method which is transforming the detection of glycosaminoglycans in situ and in patient sourced materials.

AGS Cathy Biog

Associate Professor Bridget Stocker

Bridget Stocker received her Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from Victoria University of Wellington (supervisor Prof. John Hoberg) and was awarded a FRST-funded post-doctoral fellowship to study with Prof P. H. Seeberger (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich). She then obtained a position as a Group Leader at the Malaghan Institute of Medical Institute where, along with Assoc. Prof. Mattie Timmer (VUW), she developed a research programme at the interface of chemistry and immunology. In 2013, Bridget moved to VUW where she is presently an Associate Professor in Bioorganic Chemistry. Bridget has received several awards and fellowships including the RSNZ Easterfield Medal, an HRC Hercus Fellowship, and HRC Consolidator Grant. Her research focuses on understanding the role that carbohydrates and related structures play in the immune response, with a key area of study involving the development of vaccine adjuvants for both veterinary and human-health applications. This has led to several patents and, in 2023, a license agreement with a US biotech company that will use the adjuvants in clinical trials against a range of human diseases.

AGS Bridget Stocker

Daisuke Takahashi

Daisuke Takahashi received his Ph.D. in 2006 from Tokyo Institute of Technology under the direction of Professor Takashi Takahashi. From 2005 to 2006, he was a JSPS research fellow (DC2). After studying in Professor Ole Hindsgaul’s group at the Carlsberg Laboratory in Denmark as a JSPS research fellow (PD) (2006-2007) and as a postdoctoral fellow (2007-2008), he was appointed as a research associate of the Department of Applied Chemistry in the Faculty of Science and Technology at Keio University in 2008. He then rose to the rank of Assistant Professor in 2012 and Associate Professor in 2016 at Keio University. He has received several awards including Incentive Award in Japanese Society of Carbohydrate Research in 2016, Incentive Award in Synthetic Organic Chemistry, Japan in 2017, and The Carbohydrate Research Award in 2021. His current research interests include the development of useful glycosylation methods, synthetic studies of useful antibiotics and carbohydrates, structure-activity relationship studies using synthesized compounds, and the development of new chemical tools for chemical-biological studies.

AGS Takahashi pic

Professor Vito Ferro

Vito Ferro completed his PhD at the University of Western Australia under the guidance of Bob Stick in 1992. Following postdoctoral studies at the Carlsberg Laboratory (with Klaus Bock and Morten Meldal) and the University of British Columbia (with Steve Withers) he returned to Australia in 1996 to join Progen Pharmaceuticals where he spent 12 years in various positions, including Director of Drug Discovery. Following a brief period at QUT in the CRC for Polymers he moved to the University of Queensland in 2010 where he is a Professor and Medicinal Chemistry Theme Leader in the School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences. His research interests are in carbohydrate and medicinal chemistry, with a focus on the synthesis of compounds to probe and/or inhibit carbohydrate-protein interactions involved in disease processes. Of particular interest is heparan sulfate (HS) and the development of HS mimetics as potential drugs for cancer, infectious diseases and lysosomal storage disorders.

ASG vito ferro

Dr Kamil Godula

Dr. Godula earned his PhD in synthetic organic chemistry from Columbia University and trained as a NIH K99 postdoctoral fellow with Carolyn Bertozzi in chemical glycobiology at UC Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. His research in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and the Glycobiology Research and Training Center at UCSD focuses on developing carbohydrate-based nanomaterials for glycomics platforms and chemical methods for tailoring glycan presentation and activity at cellular boundaries. His lab employs these novel tools to study host-pathogen interactions and to influence cellular differentiation in stem cells. Dr. Godula is the recipient of the NIH Pathway to Independence Award. He has been named an NIH Director’s New Innovator, an Alfred P. Sloan Fellow, and a Cottrell Scholar.

ASG Kamil Godula

Associate Professor Daniel Kolarich

Originally from Vienna, Austria, Daniel has been fortunate to have the chance to learn from great mentors and scientists. His scientific journey took him from his hometown Vienna, where he received his PhD, via a post-doctoral fellowship to Sydney at Macquarie University before he got the opportunity to join the Max-Planck-Institute of Colloids and Interfaces as a group leader and start his independent career. In 2017 he returned to Australia as an ACR Future fellow and joined the Institute for Glycomics at Griffith University as a research leader to establish the Advanced Mass Spectrometry Laboratory, and now Australian Cancer Research Foundation (ACRF) International Centre for Cancer Glycomics. His team is dedicated to developing and using glycomics and glycoproteomics, two technologies that allow translation the glyco-code of cells, to decipher how glycosylation is involved in the regulation and pathogenesis of diseases such as cancer, but also in stem cell signalling as well as the evolution of the glyco-code in animals. This fundamental understanding of the glyco-code regulation opens unprecedented opportunities for the diagnosis and treatment of diseases such as cancer, but also delivers valuable insights into the transmission pathways of zoonotic pathogens.

ASG Daniel Kolarich

Professor Megan Lord

Megan Lord is a Professor in the Graduate School of Biomedical Engineering, UNSW Sydney. Her research interests include the design of cell-biomaterial interactions for applications in drug delivery and tissue repair. Megan is the recipient of the Australian Research Council Future Fellowship (2022), Barry Preston Award from the Matrix Biology Society of Australia and New Zealand (2022), Dean’s award for Leadership (2020), a NSW Young Tall Poppy Science Award (2014), and an Australian Research Council Postdoctoral Fellowship (2010).

Megan serves on the Standards Australia Committee HE-030 Biological and Clinical Evaluation of Medical Devices, which reviews and ratifies ISO 10993 and TC194, the international standard that evaluates the biocompatibility of medical devices and manages biological risk. She is a Council Member for the International Society for Matrix Biology and has been the President of the Matrix Biology Society of Australia and New Zealand (2019-2021). Megan is the founding Academic Director of the Australian Graduate School of Engineering Industry PhD Program within the Faculty of Engineering, UNSW Sydney where she has established a program for higher degree research candidates to develop industry-ready skills and professional networks positioning them for their next role whether in industry or academia.

ASG Aprof Megan Lord

Associate Professor Jenny Mortimer

Jenny Mortimer is Associate Professor of Plant Synthetic Biology at the University of Adelaide (UoA), Australia, in the School of Agriculture, Food and Wine & The Waite Research Institute. She is Chief Investigator (CI) and UoA node leader on the newly formed ARC Centre of Excellence Plants for Space (P4S). She is also an Affiliate Staff Scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, USA, and a Director of Plant Systems Biology at the Joint BioEnergy Institute, USA. After completing her PhD at Cambridge University, UK, she began exploring how engineering the plant cell wall could deliver sustainable and economically viable biofuels: first as a postdoc in Cambridge, then as a research fellow at RIKEN Japan, before joining Berkeley Lab in 2014, and Adelaide in 2021. Her team’s research focuses on understanding and manipulating plant cell metabolism, with a focus on complex glycosylation. The goal is to develop crops which contribute to a sustainable and renewable bioeconomy.

At Adelaide, her group is using synthetic biology to develop new crops for food and materials production in controlled growth environments – including for Space settlement (P4S), applying new agricultural biotechnologies to develop resilient field crops as a CI in the ARC Training Centre for Future Crops Development, and developing Australian feedstocks for sustainable jet fuel as a CI in ARC Research Hub for Engineering Plants to Replace Fossil Carbon. In the US, her group works to reengineer the plant cell wall for the sustainable production of fuels and biochemicals from biomass, and to enhance plant-microbiome interactions for sustainable biomass crop production. She was selected as a World Economic Forum Young Scientist (2016/17), where she contributed to the WEF Code of Ethics for Researchers (widgets.weforum.org/coe), and she is an editor for the journals Plant Cell Physiology and Plant Cell Reports.

ASG Jenny Mortimer

Associate Professor Morten Thaysen-Andersen

Associate Professor Morten Thaysen-Andersen heads the Analytical Glycoimmunology group at Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia. Additionally, he was recently recruited as Visiting Professor at Nagoya University, Japan to set up a satellite lab in Clinical Glycoproteomics at the Institute for Glyco-core Research (iGCORE). Across the two laboratories, his glycobiology-focused research programme aims to advance our understanding of the human innate immune system and immune-related diseases including microbial infections, inflammation, sepsis and cancer. His team develops and applies innovative glycomics and glycoproteomics technologies using sophisticated mass spectrometry approaches while also drawing on analytical tools in protein and carbohydrate chemistry and methods in immunology, structural biology, microbiology and molecular and cell biology to unravel fundamental glycobiological processes within the innate immune system.

ASG Thaysen Andersen

Professor Chunming (CM) Wang

Chunming (CM) Wang is a professor of pharmaceutical sciences at the University of Macau (UM), Macau SAR. His research focuses on developing immunomodulatory glycan biomaterials and macrophage-based cell therapy to promote tissue regeneration. CM joined UM in October 2012 as an Assistant Professor and was promoted to Associate Professor and full Professor in 2018 and 2022, respectively. Before that, he received BSc/MSc in Biochemistry from Nanjing University (China) and PhD in Biomedical Engineering from Nanyang Technological University (Singapore) and undertook his postdoctoral training at the University of Cambridge (UK) with Wilhelm Huck and Fiona Watt. He is a Fellow of both the Royal Society of Biology (FRSB) and the Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC, UK) and has received multiple grants from academia and industry, including the Excellent Young Scientist Grant from the National Natural Science Foundation of China and Key R&D Project from Macau Science and Technology Development Fund.

AGS Chunming Wang profile pic