Dr Allan Michael Sheppard

PhD, BSc (Hons)

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Senior Research Fellow


After training in Australia (at Monash and then Sydney University), Allan spent many years in the USA as a postdoctoral fellow and faculty member at institutions such as Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis and the National Cancer Institute (NIH) in Washington DC. Increasingly he has worked at the scientific interface between academic institutions and commercial interests, recognizing the changing landscape for science as partly a business activity and the increasing reliance on advanced technologies.

Allan's primary interest and purpose has always been to understand the molecular basis of life history and evolutionary processes. This he has endeavoured to do through the fields of neuroscience, embryonic stem cells, embryology and developmental programming of fate.

Affiliations and collaborations:

  • Stem Cell Sciences Inc
  • Singapore Institute of Clinical Sciences
  • Epi Gen Research Consortium


Research | Current

  • Developmental epigenetics
  • Life history and plasticity
  • Evolution

Other research interests:

  • Stem cell fate determination and embryology
  • Tissue architecture and regeneration
  • Systems biology
  • Mathematical modelling

Major research grants:

New Zealand Foundation for Research, Science and Technology (Liggins Institute)
‘Exploiting Nutritional Epigenomics for Improved Outcomes in Livestock Production and Human Health’
Co-Science Leader with Professor Peter Gluckman FRS

New Zealand Foundation for Research, Science and Technology (AgResearch)
‘Reprogramming Cells into Cloned Animals’
Objective Leader, ‘Chromatin Remodelling in Reprogramming’

New Zealand Foundation for Research, Science and Technology (Liggins Institute)
‘Epigenomic Based Predictive Measures in Growth and Development’
Key Investigator


Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Liao, J., Yang, L., Sheppard, A. M., & Liu, Y. F. (2017). Comparison of DNA quality in raw and reconstituted milk during sterilization. Journal of dairy science10.3168/jds.2017-13461
  • Padmapriya, N., Bernard, J. Y., Liang, S., Loy, S. L., Cai, S., Zhe, I. S., ... Saw, S. M. (2017). Associations of physical activity and sedentary behavior during pregnancy with gestational diabetes mellitus among Asian women in Singapore. BMC pregnancy and childbirth, 17 (1)10.1186/s12884-017-1537-8
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Peter Gluckman
  • Barton, S., Ngo, S., Costello, P., Garratt, E., El-Heis, S., Antoun, E., ... Burdge, G. (2017). DNA methylation of Th2 lineage determination genes at birth is associated with allergic outcomes in childhood. Clinical and experimental allergy : journal of the British Society for Allergy and Clinical Immunology10.1111/cea.12988
  • Liao, J., Liu, Y. F., Yang, L., Li, F. P., & Sheppard, A. M. (2017). Development of a rapid mitochondrial DNA extraction method for species identification in milk and milk products. Journal of dairy science10.3168/jds.2017-12653
  • Sheppard, A., Ngo, S., Li, X., Boyne, M., Thompson, D., Pleasants, A., ... Forrester, T. (2017). Molecular Evidence for Differential Long-term Outcomes of Early Life Severe Acute Malnutrition. EBioMedicine, 18, 274-280. 10.1016/j.ebiom.2017.03.001
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Peter Gluckman, Terrance Forrester
  • Zhang, J., Pan, Z., & Sheppard, A. (2017). Both canonical and noncanonical Wnt signalling may be required for detoxification following ETP class mycotoxin exposure. Toxicology letters, 271, 12-19. 10.1016/j.toxlet.2017.02.006
  • Godfrey, K. M., Cutfield, W., Chan, S.-Y., Baker, P. N., & Chong, Y.-S. (2017). Nutritional Intervention Preconception and During Pregnancy to Maintain Healthy Glucose Metabolism and Offspring Health ("NiPPeR"): study protocol for a randomised controlled trial. Trials, 18 (1)10.1186/s13063-017-1875-x
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/35004
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Wayne Cutfield, Lesley McCowan, Philip Baker, Justin O'Sullivan, Clare Wall, Timothy Kenealy
  • Lin, X., Lim, I. Y., Wu, Y., Teh, A. L., Chen, L., Aris, I. M., ... Morin, A. M. (2017). Developmental pathways to adiposity begin before birth and are influenced by genotype, prenatal environment and epigenome. BMC medicine, 15 (1)10.1186/s12916-017-0800-1
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Peter Gluckman

Contact details

Primary location

2-6 PARK AVENUE - Bldg 529
Level 1, Room 120
New Zealand