Dr Kirsty Short has joined the Phipps laboratory as a post-doctoral researcher. Dr Short completed her PhD in 2013 at the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Melbourne. Her research focused on understanding how influenza virus infection could leave some individuals susceptible to secondary bacterial disease. Specifically, Dr Short focused on secondary bacterial ear infections, a big problem in many Indigenous communities and associated with permanent hearing loss.
After completing her PhD, she was awarded a CJ Martin Fellowship to undertake post-doctoral research at the Department of Virosciences, Erasmus MC, the Netherlands. She worked with Professor Ron Fouchier and Professor Thijs Kuiken to understand how the influenza virus damages the lung during infection. In particular, Dr. Short examined the role of different cell types in influenza virus-induced alveolar damage. In addition, she also examined the role of endothelial cells in influenza virus pathogenesis in various avian species (the natural hosts of influenza virus) and helped develop fluorescent/bioluminescent strains of influenza virus for in vivo imaging studies. Returning to Australia to work as a post-doctoral researcher at SBMS, she aims to understand the role of influenza in the development of asthma and whether this varies between the different influenza virus strains currently circulating in the community.