Evolving chemotherapeutics

Professor Marie Ranson

Professor Marie Ranson – Biosketch

Academic Qualifications: BSc(Hons, Biochemistry) UNSW, 1984; PhD, University of Sydney, 1990.
Career Summary: Prof Ranson was appointed as a tenured Teaching and Research Academic at University of Wollongong in 1999, and was promoted to Professor in 2015. During this time she has held appointments as the Cancer Scientific Director at the Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute, UoW (2009 – 12), acting Head of School of Biological Sciences (2006) and held a Cancer Institute Career Development Fellowship (2005 – 2008). Prior to that, she held a prestigious Fogarty post-doctoral fellowship at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda MD, USA. In the past 5 years, Prof Ranson has also been a visiting research fellow at the Finsen Laboratory, University of Copenhagen, Denmark (2009) and National Research Council (CNR) Naples, Italy (2013) and maintains active collaborations with members of these institutions.

Professional and Research Activities: Professor Ranson’s main area of expertise is in cancer biology and she contributes to several cancer drug discovery/development projects. She was awarded a Cancer Institute NSW Career Development Fellowship (2005 – 2008), has published over 70 peer-reviewed journal and book articles, attracted several national competitive grants totalling over $10,000,000, and has been invited to present her work internationally on several occasions. She has supervised 15 PhD, 2 Masters, and 35 Honours research students to completion and is currently supervising 8 PhD students. She was a past recipient of the University of Wollongong Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Research Supervision. Marie serves on a number of committees including the Federal Government’s Gene Technology Technical Advisory Committee (GTTAC) which provides expert advice to the Office of Gene Technology Regulator in relation to genetically modified organisms.

Prof Ranson also has provided major contributions of intellectual property to three oncology research programs that have identified, evaluated and optimised lead compounds for potential commercial development. This has resulted in several distinct patent applications, two of which were granted (US 09/790,900; EP 2131849) and has raised over $500,000 from local charity donations for cancer research. Under her leadership, her research group pioneered the capability to perform pre-clinical, commercially orientated drug development at the University of Wollongong to the level required for authorities such as the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Her group successfully developed the package of preclinical data for Deflexifol accepted for review by the FDA, who validated our proposed approach for clinical trials. This drug is now in Phase 1 clinical trials.

Prof. Ranson is a member of editorial board of Current Drug Targets journal (ISSN: 1873-5592). She is the Asia-Pacific coordinator of the committee organizing the International Workshop on the Cell and Molecular Biology of Plasminogen Activation in Rome (Sept, 2015) and has been co-chair and member of the International Advisory Committee of previous Workshops (USA, 2005; Sweden, 2007; United Kingdom, 2011; USA, 2013). She has also been Invited Chair plus abstract reviewer of the XIXth and XVIIIth International Congress of the International Society for Fibrinolysis and Proteolysis.