Elizabeth Gardiner JCSMR ANU
Medical Advisory Board, News

Raise the Curtin

Meet the latest member of our Medical Advisory Board, Professor Elizabeth Gardiner and recently appointed Director of the John Curtin School of Medical Research at The Australian National University in Canberra.

Elizabeth Gardiner JCSMR ANUProfessor Elizabeth Gardiner is a renowned researcher focussing on platelet biochemistry and function. A lesser-known fact, however, is that she’s a beyond beginner woodworker and an aficionado of Test cricket and Aussie Rules football. Despite having a busy schedule as the Director of the John Curtin School of Medical Research (JCSMR), Professor Elizabeth Gardiner took time to share many things about herself.

She received her PhD in Biochemistry from Monash University and completed a 5-year postdoctoral fellowship at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland OH USA. She leads a group of scientists at JCSMR evaluating platelet biochemistry and platelet receptor function, particularly relevant to both thrombosis and bleeding in patients. A more recent focus has been to evaluate new molecular mechanisms that drive platelet production. She has co-authored more than 190 research publications so far.

Professor Gardiner is a Trustee of the Thrombosis and Haemostasis Society of Australia and New Zealand (THANZ). She has many editorial roles as co-Editor in Chief of Platelets Journal, a Senior Editor role at Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology, and she is on the Editorial Board of Blood. She is the Platelets Theme leader for the 2024 International Society of Thrombosis and Haemostasis Congress to be held in Bangkok.

What is your role at JCSMR?

I was Group Leader and Deputy Director of JCSMR until January 2024. From February 2024, I’m proud to be the Director of our School.

What do you like the most about your role?

As Group Leader, discussing and interpreting data, planning the next experiments, writing research papers with lab colleagues.
As Deputy Director, discussing with our Faculty and Executives about research strategy. As Director, listening a lot, having the odd difficult conversation but generally….leading the charge!

What is your favourite thing to do when you’re not working?

Working with timbers (don’t call them wood or lumber!) to make hardwood end-grain carving, chopping and food presentation boards. I keep my eye on Test cricket scores and how the Mighty Tigers are faring in the AFL.

What inspired you to pursue a career in your field?

During second year Biochemistry lectures, learning about how insulin is enzymatically processed and then engages its receptor. I was fascinated by the collaborative and coordinated actions of enzymes, ligands and receptors, and to this day I am still working on this process although now, how receptors regulate thrombosis and haemostasis (clotting and bleeding).

What are your greatest interests?

Apart from science, I love history, politics, adventure travel and Test cricket.

What is your definition of a scientist?

They are resilient, curious, open-minded, hardworking, game for a challenge and always having a dash of healthy scepticism as part of the scientific thought process.

If you could instantly become an expert in another field, what field would you choose?


What is the thing you look forward to most when you are at JCSMR?

JCSMR Director’s and Division Seminars, Cup of Joe, talking with our postgrads and postdocs.

What’s a book you’d recommend?

Favourite books… At Swim Two Boys, Picnic at Hanging Rock, To Kill a Mockingbird, One Hundred Years of Solitude, The Great Gatsby.

What brings you the most joy in life?

A good ‘tears-running-down-the-face’ belly laugh with friends.

What is one more thing you would like to share about yourself?

I filled this form out with the idea to connect with all of our JCSMR crew. Hopefully, more people (professional and academic staff as well as our students) will do the same and help us all get to know each other better.


Source: https://jcsmr.anu.edu.au/news-events/news/raise-curtin-elizabeth-gardiner
Image Source: https://jcsmr.anu.edu.au