Prof Irene Yarovsky
RMIT, Australia


Irene Yarovsky is currently Distinguished Professor of Theoretical Physics and Research Group Leader for Materials Modelling and Simulation at RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia.

She concurrently holds a Visiting Professor position at the Department of Materials, Imperial College London, UK. Prof. Yarovsky completed her PhD in Computational Chemistry at Monash University, Australia, in 1995. She then joined industry (BHP Research, Australia) where she applied computational molecular modelling to help design advanced industrial coatings, minerals processing reagents and other materials. Following her industry appointment Irene joined RMIT University where from 2000 she has been leading a research group in theory and simulation of materials with a strong application focus, ranging from industrial to bio-materials and novel nanomaterials. At present, she is particularly interested in studying the interface between biological systems and nanomaterials as they interact in the living organisms, the environment and novel nano-bio devices for biomedical applications.

Prof. Yarovsky published over 160 papers in leading journals, 2 book chapters, and 23 industry research reports. Prof. Yarovsky is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (UK) and a Fellow of the Royal Australian Chemical Institute.

Prof Joseph Wang
University of California, San Diego, USA


Joseph Wang is Distinguished Professor, SAIC Endowed Chair and Chair of the Department of Nanoengineering at University of California, San Diego (UCSD).

He also serves as the director of Center for Wearable Sensors at UCSD School of Engineering. He served as the director of Center for Bioelectronics and Biosensors of Arizona State University (ASU). He received 2 ACS National Awards in 1999 and 2006 and 8 Honorary Professors from Spain, Argentina, Slovenia, Czech Republic and China. Prof. Wang is the Editor-in-Chief of Electroanalysis (Wiley). His scientific interests are concentrated in the areas of nanomachines, bioelectronics, biosensors, bionanotechnology, and wearable devices. He has authors over 1000 papers that were cited over 85,000 times (Google H Index=145).

Prof Chunying Chen
Chinese Academy of Sciences


Prof Chunying CHEN, CAS Key Laboratory for Biological Effects of Nanomaterials and Nanosafety, National Center for Nanoscience and Technology of China

Dr. Chen received her Bachelor's degree in chemistry (1991) and obtained her PhD degree in Biomedical engineering from Huazhong University of Science and Technology of China in 1996. She worked as a postdoctoral research fellow at the Key Laboratory of Nuclear Analytical Techniques, Institute of High Energy Physics of Chinese Academy of Sciences (1996-1998) and at the Medical Nobel Institute for Biochemistry of Karolinska Institute, Sweden (2001-2002). From 2002 onwards, she is working as a group and project leader at the China Nanosafety lab. She is one of the earliest researchers in this new field in China. Dr. Chen currently is a principal investigator at Key Laboratory for Biomedical Effects of Nanomaterials and Nanosafety in National Center for Nanoscience and Technology of China. She has authored/co-authored over 150 peer-reviewed papers/book chapters and 3 books. She has been authorized 13 granted patents and one international standard. She has served as editorial board members of peer-reviewed journals. She is the principle investigator of several domestic and international projects, such as China MOST 973 Program and projects from Natural Science Foundation of China, the EU-FP6 and EU-FP7, IAEA Coordinated Research Project (2009-2012), Danish Council for Strategic Research (2013-2015), Germany BMBF Cooperation Project (2011-2014), and Japan photon factory cooperation projects (2006-2007, 2008-2009). She has been awarded the National Award for Innovation and Outstanding Service to the Standard authorized by Standardization Administration of the People's Republic of China in 2011, the Second Prize of Beijing Science and Technology (ranked second) in 2008, the Second Prize of the National Natural Science Award (ranked second) in 2012. She has been selected as one of Highly Cited Researchers in Pharmacology & Toxicology field during 2002-2012 by Thomson Reuters in 2014. Research interests: 1) Development of novel nanomedicine with high efficiency and low toxicity for tumor theranostics. 2) Investigation on the interaction of engineered nanomaterials with biological systems. 3) Integrating advanced nuclear techniques and biotechnologies for nanomaterials exposure and molecular mechanisms. 4) Exposure scenarios and the occupational exposure to nanomaterials.

Prof Alan Rowan
University of Queensland, Australia


Professor Alan Rowan has a research focus on the interaction of cells with nanostructured materials and surfaces.


Professor Rowan is an experienced physical materials chemist with a track record in fundamental and applied research in novel molecules and materials for applications in field as wide as catalysis, nanoelectronics, biomimetic machines and more recently synthetic extracellular matrices. In my group we strive to understand the relationship between molecular architecture and macroscopic functions, designing and synthesizing new materials as well as building new analytical tools to study them. This relationship has led to a fundamental understanding of how to control material properties, which we have applied to a wide range of societal problems such as wound healing, cell growth and organic solar cells.

​After completing his first postdoctoral appointment in New Zealand in 1993 Professor Rowan returned to Europe as a Marie Curie Fellow at the University of Nijmegen. He was based in Europe since then, securing a string of successful Research and Teaching Positions in the Institute for Molecules and Materials (IMM) at the University of Nijmegen. In 2005 he became a Full professor at the University of Nijmegen, where he established a new research department of Molecular Materials, within the Institute of Molecules and Materials. As head of this research cluster Professor Rowan led a team of assistant professors, support staff and more than 50 PhDs and Post Docs and masters’ students.

In 2016 Professor Rowan became the Director of the Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology and an ARC Laureate Fellow in the area of mechanotransduction, which allowed me to establish a new research group at UQ in the area of mechano-biochemistry. In addition to his appointment in the AIBN at UQ, he is an honorary Professor at both the University of Stellenbosch (South Africa) and the Radboud University Nijmegen (Netherlands), and has a Special Frontiers Materials Professorship at the Chinese Academy of Chemical Sciences 2015-2016. 

Prof Ranjeny Thomas
University of Queensland, Australia


Professor Thomas’ research is focused on the study of the biology and clinical use of human dendritic cells in autoimmune disease.

It has explored basic mechanisms of immunity and dendritic cell function in autoimmune disease. Professor Thomas is a graduate of the University of Western Australia. She received her MBBS in 1984, and then trained in Perth as a rheumatologist. She commenced a research fellowship with Peter Lipsky at Southwestern Medical Center, University of Texas in 1990, where she first identified and characterised human circulating dendritic cell precursors. She is now Professor of Rheumatology at University of Queensland, Translational Research Institute, consultant Rheumatologist at Princess Alexandra Hospital and fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences.

Her research is focussed on the study of autoimmune disease and restoration of tolerance. Through this work, she developed and tested the first rheumatoid arthritis vaccine. She has also contributed major insights into the pathogenesis of spondyloarthropathy and autoimmune diabetes, leading to the development of disease biomarkers and innovative immunotherapies. Ranjeny is founder and a director of the spin-off company, Dendright, which is developing antigen-specific (personalised) immunotherapy and companion biomarkers to prevent and treat rheumatoid arthritis. She is funded by the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation to develop antigen-specific immunotherapy for children with type 1 diabetes.