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The Australian National University

Dr Damien Hall

B.Sc. Hons(I) (UQ); Ph.D. (Biochemistry - UQ)
Level C Research Academic (Senior Research Fellow)
ANU College of Science
T: 61(0)261253821

Areas of expertise

  • Characterisation Of Biological Macromolecules 030403
  • Nanochemistry And Supramolecular Chemistry 030302
  • Medicinal And Biomolecular Chemistry 0304

Research interests

My research is concerned with the biophysical study of important biochemical processes related to disease states. The three topics of major study are,

(i.)  Amyloid formation and its relationship to disease.
(ii.) The process of virus adsorption to the epithelial cell membrane.
(iii.) Protein diffusion in the cell cytosol and cell membrane.

Projects for students (visiting undergraduate scholars, M.Sc. or Ph.D. candidates) are available. Please email me to discuss available projects or alternatively you are welcome to suggest your own. If you are at the postdoctoral level and you would like to work together please write to me and we can discuss a number of fellowship options that I can help you apply for. My aim is to provide a good environment for scientists interested in performing basic research with the emphasis placed on understanding what you are doing.


Educational Background

1/91  to 10/95    University of Queensland                              B.Sc. (Hons I)

                         (majored in chemistry and biochemistry)

1/96  to 8/99      University of Queensland, (Biochemistry)       Ph.D.

Employment History

9/99  to 3/03      National Institutes of Health.       John E. Fogarty Postdoctoral Fellow

4/03  to 7/06      University of Cambridge.            Human Frontiers Fellow

9/06  to 4/07      Kyoto University                         Research Fellow

6/07  to 12/07    Osaka University                        Research Fellow

1/08  to 4/13      University of Tsukuba                 JST Wakate Assistant Professor

4/13  9/13          Osaka University                        Assistant Professor

1/10/2013          Australian National University     Senior Fellow (Level C Academic)

1/4/2015           Osaka University                       Associate Professor

Researcher's projects

(1) In vitro and ex vivo characterization of amyloid associated with disease states.

(2) Single particle motion in the cell membrane.

(3) Computational analysis of ssRNA binding to proteins.

(4) Effect of macromolecular crowding on protein activity and behavior.

(5) Factors affecting virus adsorption to epithelial cell membranes

Available student projects

Projects based on amyloid/amyloidoisis research

(1) ‘A model of amyloid's role in disease based on fibril fracture.’ Hall D. and Edskes H. Biophysical Chemistry. 2009, 145:17-28 – This work is concerned with a physical model of the differential cellular toxicity of various types of amyloid.

(2) ‘Effect of lipid type on the binding of lipid vesicles to islet amyloid polypeptide amyloid fibrils.’  K. Sasahara, D. Hall and D. Hamada.  Biochemistry, 2011. 49, 3040-3048 - This work describes an experimental procedure for examing amyloid interaction with a lipid membrane.

(3)On the use of size exclusion chromatography for the resolution of mixed amyloid aggregate distributions: I. equilibrium partition models D. Hall, L. Huang. Analytical biochemistry, 2012. 426, 69-85. This paper describes methods for performing and analyzing size-exclusion-chromatography experiments for the separation of amyloid fibers.

(4) Semi-automated methods for simulation and measurement of amyloid fiber distributions obtained from transmission electron microscopy experiments. D Hall. Analytical biochemistry, 2012. 421, 262-277. This paper describes methods for both simulating and analyzing TEM images of amyloid fibers. 

(5) Computational modeling of the relationship between amyloid and disease. D.Hall, H. Edskes. Biophysical reviews, 2012. 4, 205-222. A review of the relationship between amyloid formation and amyloidosis.

Projects based on characterization of biophysical interactions

(1)'Use of optical biosensors for the study of mechanistically concerted surface adsorption processes'. D. Hall. Analytical biochemistry, 288(2), 109-125 - This paper describes how optical biosensors may be used to extract kinetic and thermodynamic parameters describing the adsorption of proteins to surfaces.

(2) Innovations in data analysis-The correct analysis of low-speed sedimentation equilibrium distributions recorded by the Rayleigh interference optical system in a Beckman XL-I ultracentrifuge. DR Hall, SE Harding, DJ Winzor. Progress in Colloid and Polymer Science 113, 62-68. A look at analyzing data in the AUC derived from refractive index measurements.

Projects based on research into RNA/Protein interactions

(1) A novel protein distance matrix based on the minimum arc-length between two amino-acid residues on the surface of a globular protein. D Hall, S Li, K Yamashita, R Azuma, JA Carver, DM Standley. Biophysical chemistry. 2014. 190, 50-55. This paper describes a new type of distance matrix which can be used to constrain polymer protein docking investigations.

Projects based on the chemistry of non-ideal 'crowded' solution conditions and how such conditions might affect biochemical reactions occurring in the cell.

(1) Expanding to fill the gap: A possible role for inert biopolymers in regulating the extent of the ‘macromolecular crowding’effect. D. Hall, C.M. Dobson. FEBS letters, 2006. 580, 2584-2590

(2)Effects of macromolecular crowding on intracellular diffusion from a single particle perspective. D Hall, M Hoshino. Biophysical reviews, 2010. 2, 39-53

Projects related to diffusion in the cell membrane

(1) Analysis and interpretation of two-dimensional single-particle tracking microscopy measurements: effect of local surface roughness.  D. Hall. Analytical biochemistry (2008) 377, 24-32. This paper looks at the effect of surface roughness on the estimate of diffusion constants in the cell membrane.

(2) Effect of heterogeneity on the characterization of cell membrane compartments: I. Uniform size and permeability. D. Hall. Analytical biochemistry, 2010. 398, 230-244. This paper examines the reliability of measurements of surface membrane compartments carried out by high-speed single particle tracking.

Current student projects

Biophysical Characterization of Protein-Protein Interactions

      - I currently supervise/co-supervise two Ph.D. students and a one-year visiting occupational trainee in this general area.



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Updated:  12 December 2017 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers