Researcher biography

Mark is a Professor of Food Microbiology and Deputy Head of the School of Agriculture and Food Sciences at the University of Queensland (UQ). Since completing his PhD at Queensland University of Technology (QUT) under the supervision of Prof Phil Giffard, he has undertaken postdoctoral training in the laboratory of Prof John Helmann (Cornell University, USA, 1999-2000) and in the CRC for Diagnostic Technologies (QUT) (2000-01). He subsequently supported his own position through being awarded a Dairy Australia Fellowship (2001-03) and an NHMRC New Investigator Grant (2004-06). He accepted an academic position to specialise in food microbiology at UQ in 2007. He leads a research team in the area of food fermentation, quality and safety with current funding from the Australian Research Council (ARC Discovery). He has also attracted previous funding from the ARC Industrial Transformation Research Hub, ARC Industry Transformation Training Centre and Linkage schemes, Horticulture Innovation (HIA), Dairy Innovation Australia Ltd (DIAL) and Geoffrey Gardiner Dairy Foundation (GGDF). His current research focus is in lactic acid bacteria genetics, stress signaling, cheese cultures (flavour genes and genomics), antifungal and anti-pathogen (Salmonella and Listeria) biocontrol food applications. Mark or his group members have had the privilege of presenting invited or selected seminars in the USA, UK, Italy, Netherlands, Germany, Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia, China, Indonesia, New Zealand and South Korea on food quality and safety research areas. He has supervised 20 PhD and MPhil students to completion and currently supervises 6 PhD students, 1 postdoctoral research fellow. He teaches into food microbiology, food safety and food biotechnology courses. He is a Fellow of both the Australian Society for Microbiology (FASM) and Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology (FAIFST) and a member of the editorial boards of mBio and Journal of Food Protection. He was the recipient of the 2017 Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology (AIFST) Keith Farrer Award of Merit.