My research is focused on understanding the molecular mechanisms of apoptosis, with a particular focus on leukaemias and lymphomas. To do this, we use gene-targeting technologies as well as biochemical and molecular biology tools.

This is answering important questions about:

  • The regulation of apoptosis and other forms of cell death
  • How apoptosis and other forms of cell death are disrupted during development of haematopoietic and epithelial tumours, and autoimmune disease
  • The contribution of impaired apoptosis and possibly other forms of cell death to chemoresistance
  • How we can manipulate apoptosis and possibly other forms of cell death for therapeutic benefit
  • How the tumour suppressor p53 prevents tumour development and how it functions in cancer therapy
  • Our long-term ambition is to use this knowledge to develop new approaches to the treatment and prevention of cancer and autoimmune disease.

My group has been set up to encompass a very broad technology base, bringing together expertise in:

  • In vivo biology
  • Transgenic and gene targeting technology
  • Molecular biology, including lentiviral and shRNA vector production as well as CRISPR mediated genome editing in cell lines, primary cells and in mice
  • Biochemistry
  • Yeast genetics
  • Monoclonal antibody production
  • Immunology and haematology

This allows us to tackle many important questions in cell death, molecular oncology and immunology and helped to establish our group at the forefront in our area of research.


Selected publications from Prof Andreas Strasser

Doerflinger M, Deng Y, Whitney P, Salvamoser R, Engel S, Kueh A, Tai L, Bachem A, Gressier E, Wilcox E, Geoghegan N, Rogers K, Garnham A, Dengler M, Bader SM, Ebert G, Pearson J, DeNardo D, Wang N, Yang C, Pereira M, Bryant C, Strugnell R, Vince J, Pellegrini M, Strasser A*, Bedoui S*, Herold M* (* joint senior authors). Flexible usage and interconnectivity of diverse cell death pathways protects against intracellular infection. Immunity, 53, 533-547, 2020.

Aubrey BJ, Janic A, Chen Y, Chang C, Lieschke EC, Diepstraten ST, Kueh AJ, Bernardini JP, Dewson G, O’Reilly LA, Whitehead L, Voss AK, Smyth GK, Strasser A*, Kelly GL*. (* joint senior authors). Mutant TRP53 exerts a target gene selective dominant negative effect to drive tumor development. Genes Dev, 32, 1420-1429, 2018.

Ke F*, Vanyai H*, Cowan A, Whitehead L, Delbridge ARD, Grabow S, Czabotar P, Voss AK#, Strasser A#. (* joint first authorship; # joint senior authorship). Embryogenesis and adult life in the absence of intrinsic apoptosis effectors BAX, BAK and BOK. Cell, 173, 1217-1230, 2018.

Janic A, Valente LJ, Wakefield MJ, Di Stefano L, Milla L, Wilcox S, Yang H, Tai L, Vandenberg CJ, Kueh AJ, Mizutani S, Brennan MS, Schenk RL, Lindqvist LM, Papenfuss AT, O’Connor L*, Strasser A*#, Herold MJ*. (these authors share senior authorship; # corresponding author). DNA repair processes are critical mediators of p53-dependent tumour suppression. Nature Medicine, 24, 947-953, 2018.

Kotschy A, Szlavik Z, Murray J, Davidson J, Maragno AL, Le Toumelin-Braizat G, Chanrion M, Kely GL, Gong J, Moujalled D, Bruno A, Csekei M, Paczal A, Szabo Z, Sipos S, Radics G, Proszenyak A, Balint B, Ondi L, Blasko G, Robertson A, Surgenor A, Dukorno P, Chen I, Matassova N, Smith J, Pedder C, Graham C, Studeny A, Lysiak-Auvity G, Girard A-M, Grave F, Segal D, Riffkin CD, Pomilio G, Brennan MS, Herold MJ, Chang C, Guasconi G, Cauquil N, Melchiore F, Guigal-Stephan N, Lockhart B, Colland F, Hickman JA, Roberts AW, Huang DCS, Wei A, Strasser A, Lessene G, Geneste O. Potent and selective MCL1 inhibition is tolerable and efficacious in multiple cancer models. Nature. 2016 Oct 27;538(7626):477-482. PMID: 27760111.

Jost PJ, Grabow S, Gray D, McKenzie MD, Nachbur U, Huang DC, Bouillet P, Thomas HE, Borner C, Silke J, Strasser A, Kaufmann T. XIAP discriminates between type I and type II FAS-induced apoptosis. Nature. 2009 Aug 20;460(7258):1035-9. PMID: 19626005.

Puthalakath H, O’Reilly LA, Gunn P, Lee L, Kelly PN, Huntington ND, Hughes PD, Michalak EM, McKimm-Breschkin J, Motoyama N, Gotoh T, Akira S, Bouillet P, Strasser A. ER stress triggers apoptosis by activating BH3-only protein Bim. Cell. 2007 Jun 29;129(7):1337-49. PMID: 17604722.

Villunger A, Michalak EM, Coultas L, Mullauer F, Bock G, Ausserlechner MJ, Adams JM, Strasser A. p53- and drug-induced apoptotic responses mediated by BH3-only proteins puma and noxa. Science. 2003 Nov 7;302(5647):1036-8. PMID: 14500851.

Bouillet P, Metcalf D, Huang DC, Tarlinton DM, Kay TW, Kontgen F, Adams JM, Strasser A. Proapoptotic Bcl-2 relative Bim required for certain apoptotic responses, leukocyte homeostasis, and to preclude autoimmunity. Science. 1999 Nov 26;286(5445):1735-8. PMID: 10576740.

Strasser A, Harris AW, Cory S. bcl-2 transgene inhibits T cell death and perturbs thymic self-censorship. Cell. 1991 Nov 29;67(5):889-99. PMID: 1959134.

Strasser A, Whittingham S, Vaux DL, Bath ML, Adams JM, Cory S, Harris AW. Enforced BCL2 expression in B-lymphoid cells prolongs antibody responses and elicits autoimmune disease. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 1991 Oct 1;88(19):8661-5. PMID: 1924327.

Strasser A, Harris AW, Bath ML, Cory S. Novel primitive lymphoid tumours induced in transgenic mice by cooperation between myc and bcl-2. Nature. 1990 Nov 22;348(6299):331-3. PMID: 2250704.

Lab research projects

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