Dr Michael Morris

Sesqui Senior Lecturer in Embryonic Stem Cells
Physiology, School of Medical Sciences
Bosch Institute

Telephone +61 2 9036 3276
Fax +61 2 9036 3316

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Research interests

My laboratory has ongoing interests in two distinct areas: (i) Embryonic Stem Cells/Embryogenesis and (ii) 3D Structure of Membrane Proteins.

Embryonic Stem Cells/Embryogenesis ES cells recapitulate many of the complex processes that occur during mammalian embryogenesis. This provides enormous experimental advantages because it is possible to identify molecules, signaling pathways, genetic and epigenetic events that contribute to stemness and that direct the differentiation of stem cells to specific cell fates. Thus, we use ES cells as an in vitro model to understand the molecular mechanisms of normal and abnormal development. We also develop protocols to direct the differentiation of ES cells to specific cell types that can be used in animal models of human disease. In addition, we apply the knowledge we have gained from stem-cell behaviour in vitro to determine if the development of embryos themselves are controlled by the same or similar mechanisms. In particular, we focus on 3 key milestones in development which must be negotiated successfully: formation of the blastocyst, gastrulation, and neurogenesis. 3D Structure of Membrane Proteins Membrane proteins are common and perform an enormous range of critical tasks in cells. However, it has continued to prove very difficult to obtain information on their 3D structures. Our research is directed towards developing computational tools that can be used to predict, refine, and compare the 3D structures of these proteins.

PhD and master's project opportunities

Selected grants

2012

  • Upgrade of the Palm Duoflex Combi Laser Microdissection and Optical Tweezers System to a High-resolution and Improved Live-cell Imaging Platform using an Apotome.2 Slider and Associated Software; Cole L, Mason R, Richardson D, Phillips W, Bao B, Buckland M, Morris M, Dos Remedios C; Rebecca L Cooper Medical Research Foundation/Equipment Grant.

2010

  • Directed differentiation of ES cells; Morris M; DVC Research/Bridging Support Grant.

2009

  • A new Laser Microdissection Microscope with a unique pressure catapulting technique allows isolation of pure samples for subsequent downstream molecular analyses; Halliday G, Morris B, Mason R, Murphy C, Bishop A, Leamey C, Joshua D, Lee C, Iland H, Pamphlett R, Richardson D, King N, Hunt N, Arnold J, Morris M, Protti D; National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)/Equipment Grants.

2001

  • Differentiation of human myeloid leukemia cell lines by the novel P2Y11 receptor: analysis of biochemical mechanism by multiwell plate; Conigrave A, Morris M; Clive & Vera Ramaciotti Foundation/Project Support.
  • Development of a molecular modelling method for integral-membrane proteins and its application to G protein-coupled receptors and the galanin receptor system.; Morris M; DVC Research/Research and Development Scheme: Research and Development (R&D).

2000

  • Development of a molecular modelling method for integral-membrane proteins; Morris M; Australian Research Council (ARC)/Small Grants.

Selected publications

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Book Chapters

  • Morris, M. (2012). Modelling Differentiation of Pluripotent Stem Cells to the Three Germ Layers. In Kuldip Sidhu (Eds.), Frontiers in Pluripotent Stem Cells Research and Therapeutic Potentials: Bench-to-Bedside, (pp. 68-82). United Arab Emirates: Bentham Science Publishers.
  • Morris, M., Rathjen, J., Keough, R., Rathjen, P. (2005). Biology of Embryonic Stem Cells. In Jon S. Odorico, Su-Chun Zhang, Roger A. Pedersen (Eds.), Human Embryonic Stem Cells, (pp. 1-28). United States: Garland Science/BIOS Scientific Publishers.

Journals

  • Hamzeh-Mivehroud, M., Alizadeh, A., Morris, M., Church, W., Dastmalchi, S. (2013). Phage display as a technology delivering on the promise of peptide drug discovery. Drug Discovery Today, 18(23-24), 1144-1157. [More Information]
  • Lee, K., Tan, J., Morris, M., Rizzoti, K., Hughes, J., Cheah, P., Felquer, F., Liu, X., Piltz, S., Lovell-Badge, R., et al (2012). Congenital Hydrocephalus and Abnormal Subcommissural Organ Development in Sox3 Transgenic Mice. PLoS One, 7(1), e29041 - 1-e29041 - 12. [More Information]
  • Shinar, Y., Obici, L., Aksentijevich, I., Bennetts, B., Austrup, F., Ceccherini, I., Costa, J., De Leener, A., Morris, M., et al (2012). Guidelines for the genetic diagnosis of hereditary recurrent fevers. Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, 71(10), 1599-1605. [More Information]
  • Werner, T., Morris, M., Dastmalchi, S., Church, W. (2012). Structural modelling and dynamics of proteins for insights into drug interactions. Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews, 64(4), 323-343. [More Information]
  • Tan, B., Lonic, A., Morris, M., Rathjen, P., Rathjen, J. (2011). The amino acid transporter SNAT2 mediates L-proline-induced differentiation of ES cells. American Journal of Physiology: Cell Physiology, 300(6), C1270-C1279. [More Information]
  • Washington, J., Rathjen, J., Felquer, F., Lonic, A., Bettess, M., Hamra, N., Semendric, L., Tan, B., Lake, J., Keough, R., Morris, M., et al (2010). L-Proline induces differentiation of ES cells: a novel role for an amino acid in the regulation of pluripotent cells in culture. American Journal of Physiology: Cell Physiology, 298(5), C982-C992. [More Information]
  • Morris, M., Dastmalchi, S., Church, W. (2009). Rhodopsin: Structure, signal transduction and oligomerisation. The International Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, 41(4), 721-724. [More Information]
  • Dastmalchi, S., Church, W., Morris, M. (2008). Modelling the structures of G protein-coupled receptors aided by three-dimensional validation. BMC Bioinformatics, 9(S1), S14-1-S14-13. [More Information]
  • Dastmalchi, S., Beheshti, S., Morris, M., Church, W. (2007). Prediction of rotational orientation of transmembrane helical segments of integral membrane proteins using new environment-based propensities for amino acids derived from structural analyses. The FEBS Journal, 274(10), 2653-2660.
  • Dastmalchi, S., Church, W., Morris, M., Iismaa, T., Mackay, J. (2004). Presence of transient helical segments in the galanin-like peptide evident from 1H NMR, circular dichroism, and prediction studies. Journal of Structural Biology, 146(3), 261-271.
  • Morris, M. (2003). The power and potential of embryonic stem cells to treat human diseases. Hygiene Today, 15, 11-12.
  • Dastmalchi, S., Kobus, F., Iismaa, T., Morris, M., Church, W. (2002). Comparison of the transmembrane helices of bovine rhodopsin in the crystal structure and the C α template based on cryo-electron microscopy maps and sequence analysis of the G protein-coupled receptors. Molecular Simulation, 28(8), 845-851.
  • Dastmalchi, S., Morris, M., Church, W. (2001). Modeling of the structural features of integral-membrane proteins using reverse-environment prediction of integral membrane protein structure (REPIMPS). Protein Science, 10(8), 1529-1538.
  • Bebawy, M., Morris, M., Roufogalis, B. (2001). Selective modulation of P-glycoprotein-mediated drug resistance. British Journal of Cancer, 85(12), 1998-2003.
  • Toonkool, P., Regan, D., Kuchel, P., Morris, M., Weiss, A. (2001). Thermodynamic and hydrodynamic properties of human tropoelastin. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 276, 28042-28050.

Conferences

  • Raymond, J., Van Kemenade, C., Graham, K., Morris, M., Davis, G. (2003). Prolonged Es-Les Cycling Exercise for Individuals With Paraplegia. 50th American College of Sports Medicine Annual Meeting ACSM 2003, United States: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

2013

  • Hamzeh-Mivehroud, M., Alizadeh, A., Morris, M., Church, W., Dastmalchi, S. (2013). Phage display as a technology delivering on the promise of peptide drug discovery. Drug Discovery Today, 18(23-24), 1144-1157. [More Information]

2012

  • Lee, K., Tan, J., Morris, M., Rizzoti, K., Hughes, J., Cheah, P., Felquer, F., Liu, X., Piltz, S., Lovell-Badge, R., et al (2012). Congenital Hydrocephalus and Abnormal Subcommissural Organ Development in Sox3 Transgenic Mice. PLoS One, 7(1), e29041 - 1-e29041 - 12. [More Information]
  • Shinar, Y., Obici, L., Aksentijevich, I., Bennetts, B., Austrup, F., Ceccherini, I., Costa, J., De Leener, A., Morris, M., et al (2012). Guidelines for the genetic diagnosis of hereditary recurrent fevers. Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, 71(10), 1599-1605. [More Information]
  • Morris, M. (2012). Modelling Differentiation of Pluripotent Stem Cells to the Three Germ Layers. In Kuldip Sidhu (Eds.), Frontiers in Pluripotent Stem Cells Research and Therapeutic Potentials: Bench-to-Bedside, (pp. 68-82). United Arab Emirates: Bentham Science Publishers.
  • Werner, T., Morris, M., Dastmalchi, S., Church, W. (2012). Structural modelling and dynamics of proteins for insights into drug interactions. Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews, 64(4), 323-343. [More Information]

2011

  • Tan, B., Lonic, A., Morris, M., Rathjen, P., Rathjen, J. (2011). The amino acid transporter SNAT2 mediates L-proline-induced differentiation of ES cells. American Journal of Physiology: Cell Physiology, 300(6), C1270-C1279. [More Information]

2010

  • Washington, J., Rathjen, J., Felquer, F., Lonic, A., Bettess, M., Hamra, N., Semendric, L., Tan, B., Lake, J., Keough, R., Morris, M., et al (2010). L-Proline induces differentiation of ES cells: a novel role for an amino acid in the regulation of pluripotent cells in culture. American Journal of Physiology: Cell Physiology, 298(5), C982-C992. [More Information]

2009

  • Morris, M., Dastmalchi, S., Church, W. (2009). Rhodopsin: Structure, signal transduction and oligomerisation. The International Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, 41(4), 721-724. [More Information]

2008

  • Dastmalchi, S., Church, W., Morris, M. (2008). Modelling the structures of G protein-coupled receptors aided by three-dimensional validation. BMC Bioinformatics, 9(S1), S14-1-S14-13. [More Information]

2007

  • Dastmalchi, S., Beheshti, S., Morris, M., Church, W. (2007). Prediction of rotational orientation of transmembrane helical segments of integral membrane proteins using new environment-based propensities for amino acids derived from structural analyses. The FEBS Journal, 274(10), 2653-2660.

2005

  • Morris, M., Rathjen, J., Keough, R., Rathjen, P. (2005). Biology of Embryonic Stem Cells. In Jon S. Odorico, Su-Chun Zhang, Roger A. Pedersen (Eds.), Human Embryonic Stem Cells, (pp. 1-28). United States: Garland Science/BIOS Scientific Publishers.

2004

  • Dastmalchi, S., Church, W., Morris, M., Iismaa, T., Mackay, J. (2004). Presence of transient helical segments in the galanin-like peptide evident from 1H NMR, circular dichroism, and prediction studies. Journal of Structural Biology, 146(3), 261-271.

2003

  • Raymond, J., Van Kemenade, C., Graham, K., Morris, M., Davis, G. (2003). Prolonged Es-Les Cycling Exercise for Individuals With Paraplegia. 50th American College of Sports Medicine Annual Meeting ACSM 2003, United States: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
  • Morris, M. (2003). The power and potential of embryonic stem cells to treat human diseases. Hygiene Today, 15, 11-12.

2002

  • Dastmalchi, S., Kobus, F., Iismaa, T., Morris, M., Church, W. (2002). Comparison of the transmembrane helices of bovine rhodopsin in the crystal structure and the C α template based on cryo-electron microscopy maps and sequence analysis of the G protein-coupled receptors. Molecular Simulation, 28(8), 845-851.

2001

  • Dastmalchi, S., Morris, M., Church, W. (2001). Modeling of the structural features of integral-membrane proteins using reverse-environment prediction of integral membrane protein structure (REPIMPS). Protein Science, 10(8), 1529-1538.
  • Bebawy, M., Morris, M., Roufogalis, B. (2001). Selective modulation of P-glycoprotein-mediated drug resistance. British Journal of Cancer, 85(12), 1998-2003.
  • Toonkool, P., Regan, D., Kuchel, P., Morris, M., Weiss, A. (2001). Thermodynamic and hydrodynamic properties of human tropoelastin. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 276, 28042-28050.

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