Huon Wong

Huon Wong

Researchers in the lab
Our supportive and collaborative culture helped Mr Huon Wong decide to join our Honours program.

A great place to learn

Researchers in the lab
Honours student Huon Wong (R) with his supervisor
Associate Professor Sandra Nicholson

Huon came to the Institute after completing undergraduate studies at the Australian National University. He said that when he attended our Student Open Day, he was impressed by how approachable our supervisors were.

“Everyone was really friendly, and there was a variety of interesting projects on offer,” he said. “I also really liked the role of the student association WESA, in providing academic and social support.”

Now at the mid-point of his Honours year, Huon said he benefits from the Institute’s collaborative culture.

“Everyone is willing to help one another, which has been great for me. I’ve learnt heaps from the Honours coursework, as well as from people who are passionate about their field of research. Through hearing about a wide range of research at the Institute, I’ve been exposed to new scientific ideas.”

The annual Student Retreat, organised by WESA, was another highlight for Huon. “It was a great opportunity to meet the other students in a less academic setting.”

A focus on cell signalling

Researcher in the lab
Huon's Honours project is looking at proteins involved
in immune responses to cancer.

Huon’s Honours project, supervised by Associate Professor Sandra Nicholson, looks at how the protein CIS regulates immune responses to cancer. “When CIS is switched off, immune cells are better able to kill cancer cells – which makes CIS a potential target for cancer immunotherapy drugs.”

Producing and analysing proteins are techniques that are central to Huon’s project. “I use DNA constructs to express proteins of interest in cultured cells, and then use immunoprecipitation, western blotting and mass spectrometry to investigate what the proteins are doing,” he said.

Huon is still thinking about what he’d like to do after he finishes Honours.

“I have a strong interest in science and am keen to continue in the field. Wherever I end up, I’m sure I’ll be able to use the skills gained from my time at the Institute.”