Professor Rod Dunbar

Research | Current

  • Cancer vaccines
  • Cancer therapy
  • Cellular immunology

Professor Rod Dunbar holds both a medical degree (MBChB) and a PhD from the University of Otago in New Zealand. He spent 6 years as a post-doctoral research fellow in human immunology at the University of Oxford, before returning to New Zealand in 2002 under a Wellcome Trust International Senior Research Fellowship. In 2008 he was appointed the Director of the Maurice Wilkins Centre, a national Centre of Research Excellence that promotes a multi-disciplinary approach to the discovery of new medicines and vaccines. Since 2009 he has also co-directed a programme within the University of Auckland to accelerate its research related to human therapeutics (the Biopharma Thematic Research Initiative).

Rod's lab has a primary focus on human cellular immunology, especially understanding how T cell responses to tumours arise and how these T cell responses can be stimulated in cancer therapy. The lab has particular expertise in the use of flow cytometry and immunofluorescence microscopy to study T cells and antigen-presenting cells in human tissues, and in analysing the function of these cells in primary cell culture models. These techniques are also employed by the lab to characterise mesenchymal stem cells in human tissues, and examine their role in human disease and their potential in cell therapy and tissue engineering. Rod's lab interacts with a wide collaborative network with particular strengths in organic and medicinal chemistry, tissue imaging, and computer modelling.

Areas of expertise

Proteomics and Biomedicine

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

As of 29 October 2020 there will be no automatic updating of 'selected publications and creative works' from Research Outputs. Please continue to keep your Research Outputs profile up to date.
  • Park, S. M., Brooks, A. E., Chen, C.-J. J., Sheppard, H. M., Loef, E. J., McIntosh, J. D., ... Cebon, J. (2020). Migratory cues controlling B-lymphocyte trafficking in human lymph nodes. Immunology and cell biology10.1111/imcb.12386
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Anna Brooks, Saem Park, Evert Loef, Hilary Sheppard, Catherine Angel, Chun-Jen Jennifer Chen
  • Eom, J. E., Park, S. M., Chen, C.-J. J., Feisst, V. F., Mathy, J. E., McIntosh, J. D., ... Cebon, J. C. (2020). Distinctive Subpopulations of Stromal Cells Are Present in Human Lymph Nodes Infiltrated with Melanoma. Cancer Immunology Research, 8 (8).10.1158/2326-6066.CIR-19-0796
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Saem Park, Vaughan Feisst, Joanna Mathy, Catherine Angel, Anna Brooks, Chun-Jen Jennifer Chen
  • Brooks, A. E., Boss, A. L., Lehnert, K., & Dunbar, P. R. (2020). Dissecting adipose tissue derived mesenchymal stromal cell heterogeneity using single cell rna sequencing and multiparameter spectral flow cytometry. CYTOTHERAPY. (pp. 2).
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Anna Brooks
  • Cebon, J. S., Gore, M., Thompson, J. F., Davis, I. D., McArthur, G. A., Walpole, E., ... MacGregor, D. (2020). Results of a randomized, double-blind phase II clinical trial of NY-ESO-1 vaccine with ISCOMATRIX adjuvant versus ISCOMATRIX alone in participants with high-risk resected melanoma. Journal for immunotherapy of cancer, 8 (1).10.1136/jitc-2019-000410
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Michael Findlay, Margaret Brimble
  • Park, S., Brooks, A., Chen, C.-J., & Dunbar, R. (2020). Molecular characteristics of tumor-associated macrophages in human melanoma metastases.. CANCER IMMUNOLOGY RESEARCH. (pp. 2).
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Anna Brooks
  • Cameron, A. J., Davison, E. K., An, C., Stubbing, L. A., Dunbar, P. R., Harris, P. W. R., & Brimble, M. A. (2020). Synthesis and SAR Analysis of Lipovelutibols B and D and Their Lipid Analogues. The Journal of organic chemistry, 85 (3), 1401-1406. 10.1021/acs.joc.9b02348
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Margaret Brimble, Alan Cameron, Louise Stubbing, Paul Harris
  • Loef, E. J., Brooks, A. E. S., Lorenz, N., Birch, N. P., & Dunbar, P. R. (2020). Neuroserpin regulates human T cell-T cell interactions and proliferation through inhibition of tissue plasminogen activator. Journal of leukocyte biology, 107 (1), 145-158. 10.1002/jlb.2a1019-098rr
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Evert Loef, Anna Brooks, Natalie Lorenz
  • Kelch, I. D., Bogle, G., Sands, G. B., Phillips, A. R. J., LeGrice, I. J., & Dunbar, P. R. (2019). High-resolution 3D imaging and topological mapping of the lymph node conduit system. PLoS biology, 17 (12)10.1371/journal.pbio.3000486
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Anthony Phillips, Inken Kelch, Gib Bogle, Gregory Sands, Ian LeGrice


Contact details

Primary office location

Level 2, Room 2010
New Zealand

Web links