Biotechnology and biological sciences

Contact Angle

UC's School of Biological Sciences is a vibrant research environment, which receives more than $3 million of external research income every year. 

Research is fascinating and conducted across three main fields - biotechnology, biodiversity and biosecurity, all of which are exciting and rapidly developing subjects worldwide.

Our students mix and match, according to their needs and interests, from the diverse range of courses including Antarctic ecosystems, marine ecology and climate change. There are opportunities to use gene technologies, electron microscopes and satellite images, and the research can take you to field stations throughout New Zealand's South Island, to Antarctica and the other side of the world. 

Research Strengths

Areas of current research biomolecular interactions include:

  • Evolving and engineering biomolecules
  • Engineering biotechnology
  • From interaction to application

Research centres and groups

Biomolecular Interaction Centre

Researchers and supervisors

Staff actively working in these areas are:

Renwick Dobson

Professor
Biochemistry
Julius von Haast 620
Internal Phone: 95145

Volker Nock

Senior Lecturer
Director Biomolecular Interaction Centre
Link 306
Internal Phone: 94303

Antony Fairbanks

Professor
West 860
Internal Phone: 95217

Conan Fee

Head of School
Professor
Len Lye 204
Internal Phone: 94078

Paul Gardner

Associate Professor
Department of Biochemistry, University of Otago
Julius von Haast 520
Internal Phone: 6742

Juliet Ann Gerrard

Adjunct Professor
Biochemistry

Emily Parker

Professor, Ferrier Research Institute, Victoria University of Wellington
West 758
Internal Phone: 6871

Grant Pearce

Senior Lecturer
Biochemistry
Julius von Haast 624
Internal Phone: 95199

Anthony Poole

Professor
School of Biological Sciences, University of Auckland

Areas of current research in biosafety include:

  • Molecular biology
  • Genetics
  • Biochemistry
  • Post-genomics
  • Political science
  • Social studies of science and technology
  • Participatory technology assessment
  • The social dimensions of risk

Research centres and groups

Misko Cubrinovski

Professor
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E444
Internal Phone: 92098

Mofreh Saleh

Associate Professor
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E405
Internal Phone: 95118

Areas of current research in biomedicine include:

  • Medical engineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomechanics
  • Rehabilitation
  • Modelling
  • Therapeutics
  • Medical informatics

Research centres and groups

Researchers and supervisors

Staff actively working in these areas are:

Tom Cochrane

Professor
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E407
Internal Phone: 95074

Mark Davidson

Head of Department
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E427
Internal Phone: 95879

Pedro Lee

Professor
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E428
Internal Phone: 92062

Roger Nokes

Mema o te Kaunihera
Professor
Council member
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E442
Internal Phone: 92046

Areas of current research in bioengineering include:

  • Modeling arterial blood flow in the brain
  • Modeling autoregulation in the kidney
  • Hand Orthosis Mechanical Exoskeleton (HOME)
  • Control systems and modeling to assist ICU patients
  • Digital Image-based Elasto-Tomography (DIET) breast cancer screening system
  • Atherosclerosis and calcium signalling in endothelial cells
  • Biocorrosion behaviour of bioresorbable metallic implants
  • Numerical methods in bioengineering

Research centres and groups

Researchers and supervisors

Staff actively working in these areas are:

Ricardo Bello Mendoza

Senior Lecturer
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E429
Internal Phone: 92043

Tom Cochrane

Professor
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E407
Internal Phone: 95074

Tonny de Vries

Senior Lecturer
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering e431
Internal Phone: 95963

Markus Pahlow

Senior Lecturer
Civil Mechanical Engineering Rm E418
Internal Phone: 92053

Areas of current research in Antarctic studies include:

  • Atmosphere-climate-cryosphere
  • Antarctic ecosystems
  • Antarctic and Southern Ocean governance

Research centres and groups

Researchers and supervisors

Staff actively working in these areas are:

Mark Milke

Professor
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E440
Internal Phone: 92154

Areas of current research in atmospheric processes include:

  • Atmospheric, coastal, and snow and ice processes.

Research centres and groups

Researchers and supervisors

Staff actively working in these areas are:

Minghao Li

Senior Lecturer
1st Pro coordinator
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E409
Internal Phone: 92048

Areas of current research in aquaculture and marine ecology include:

  • Sustainability of cultured fisheries
  • Mesocosm experiments 
  • nutrients in aquaculture

Research centres and groups

Researchers and supervisors

Staff actively working in these areas are:

  • Professor David Schiel
  • Dr Sharyn Goldstien
  • Dr John Pirker
  • Dr Michael Hickford
  • Craig Stevens
  • Dr Dave Taylor

Allan Scott

Associate Professor
3rd Pro coordinator
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E446C
Internal Phone: 92089

Chin-Long Lee

Senior Lecturer
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E413
Internal Phone: 92063

Areas of current research in free radical biochemistry include:

  • Heart disease, strokes and plaque growth: the role of cell death
  • Oxidative and inflammatory events in atherosclerotic plaque
  • Inflammation and septicaemia
  • Radical damage to blood plasma proteins during disease
  • What protects fish from oxidants?

Research centres and groups

Researchers and supervisors

Staff actively working in these areas are:

Brendon Bradley

Professor in Earthquake Engineering
Deputy-Director of QuakeCoRE
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E304
Internal Phone: 92156

Rajesh Dhakal

Professor
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E420
Internal Phone: 95948

Chin-Long Lee

Senior Lecturer
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E413
Internal Phone: 92063

Minghao Li

Senior Lecturer
1st Pro coordinator
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E409
Internal Phone: 92048

Gregory MacRae

Associate Professor
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering E408
Internal Phone: 92068

Christopher McGann

Senior Lecturer
Civil & Natural Resources Engineering Rm E445
Internal Phone: 92252

Areas of current research in freshwater ecology and management include:

  • Riparian Management Mackenzie Project
  • Ecology of urban streams
  • Acid mine drainage
  • Populations and communities
  • Ecology of standing waters
  • Ecosystem size
  • Aquatic-terrestrial linkages
  • Forest fragmentation

Research centres and groups

Researchers and supervisors

Staff actively working in these areas are:

  • Professor Angus McIntosh
  • Professor Jon Harding
  • Professor Michael Winterbourn
  • Dr Helen Warburton
  • Professor Jenny Webster-Brown
  • Dr Leanne Morgan
  • Professor Ian Hawes
  • Julie Clarke

Areas of current research in plant processes include:

  • Biodiversity and conservation of Philippine Rafflesia 
  • Evolutionary history of Tribe Senecioneae
  • Mistletoe pollination and dispersal
  • Species masting

Research centres and groups

  • Mistletoe Research Group
  • Mast Seeding Research Group

Researchers and supervisors

Staff actively working in these areas are:

  • Professor Dave Kelly
  • Pieter Pelser
  • Julie Fenete Barcelona