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Professor Grant Morahan

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Centre for Diabetes Research

Professor Grant Morahan

Contact details

[email protected]

Centre for Diabetes Research

Professor Grant Morahan


Professor Grant Morahan BSc(Hons), PhD is a graduate of La Trobe and Melbourne Universities, and holds a doctorate in immunogenetics from the University of Melbourne. He worked as a Fogarty International Fellow at the prestigious Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation in California. Taking up a position at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research in Melbourne, he led a research team working on the genetics of complex diseases and researching immunological tolerance. His research has included genetics of type 1 diabetes in humans and in animal models; genetics of asthma, obesity, demyelinating diseases, cardiovascular disease and malaria; characterization of mechanisms of immune tolerance; and production of monoclonal antibodies. To date, his work has resulted in the publication of over 100 scientific papers, including many in the world’s leading scientific journals. Professor Morahan was the State Councillor of the Australasian Society for Immunology and founding President of the Immunology Group of Victoria; he is a member of the Steering Committee of the international Type I Diabetes Genetics Consortium; Principal Investigator of the Asia-Pacific Type I Diabetes Genetics Network; a member of the prestigious worldwide Faculty of 1000; and a founder of the Complex Trait Consortium. He was appointed in 2005 as the inaugural Diabetes Research Foundation Professor at the University of Western Australia, and the Director of the Centre for Diabetes Research at the Western Australian Institute for Medical Research at the Royal Perth Hospital campus. In addition to being Director of the Centre for Diabetes Research, Grant founded Geniad, a company which will offer pharmaceutical services based on a world-leading genetic resource, The Gene Mine. He is Chief Scientific Officer of Geniad.

Professor Grant Morahan established GordianTec Pty Ltd which was founded in August 2011 to commercialize applications of technology developed by researchers at the Centre for Diabetes Research at the Perkins. GordianTec develops methods for improved patient management and better disease outcomes. GordianTec is responsible for filing patent applications for diagnostics in areas including diabetes and cancer. It is expanding application of its approach to new diseases.

Research Overview

  • Genetics of complex diseases
  • Type 1 diabetes
  • Systems Genetics
  • Advanced genetic technologies
  • Gene – diet interactions

Selected Publications

Kemp D, Morahan G, Cowman A and Harris AW (1983). Immunoglobulin Cµ RNA fragments bearing only the µ-membrane exons: implications for the control of 3′ processing pathways. Nature 301, 84. [NCBI PubMed Entry]

Morahan G, Berek C and Miller JFAP (1983). An idiotypic determinant formed by both constant and variable regions of an immunoglobulin molecule. Nature 301, 720. [NCBI PubMed Entry]

Morahan G, Brennan F, Allison J, Bhathal PS, Cox KO and Miller JFAP. (1989) Expression in transgenic mice of class I histocompatibilty antigens controlled by the metallothionein promoter. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 86, 3782. [NCBI PubMed Entry]

Morahan G, Allison J and Miller JFAP (1989). Tolerance of class I histocompatibility antigens expressed extrathymically. Nature 339, 622. [NCBI PubMed Entry]

Morahan G, Hoffman M and Miller JFAP (1991). A non-deletional mechanism of peripheral tolerance in T cell receptor transgenic mice. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 88, 11421-11425. [NCBI PubMed Entry]

Morahan G, McClive PJ, Huang D, Little P and Baxter AG (1994). Genetic and physiological association of diabetes susceptibility with raised Na+/H+ exchange activity. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 91, 5898-5902. [NCBI PubMed Entry]

Blackburn CC, Augustine CL, Li R, Miller JFAP, Harvey RP, Boyd RL and Morahan G (1996). Differentiation of thymic epithelial progenitors requires the cell-autonomous action of the nude gene product Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 93, 5742-6. [NCBI PubMed Entry]

Morahan G, Huang D, Colman P, Tait B and Harrison L (1996). Markers on distal chromosome 2q linked to insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. Science 272, 1181-1183. [NCBI PubMed Entry]

Morahan G, Huang D, Ymer SI, Cancilla MR, Dabadghao P, Werther P, Stephen K, Tait B, Harrison L and Colman P (2001). Linkage disequilibrium of type 1 diabetes with IL12B regulatory alleles. Nature Genetics 27, 218-221. [NCBI PubMed Entry]

Morahan G, Huang D, Wu M, Holt BJ, White GP, Kendall GE, Sly PD, and Holt PG (2002). Association of IL12B promoter polymorphism with severity of atopic and non-atopic asthma in children. Lancet 360, 455-59. [NCBI PubMed Entry]