Honorary Associates

Dr Kenneth Beh

Main research interests:
Genetics of disease resistance to infectious disease in animals, with a view to developing genetic markers to facilitate selection for disease resistance or to improve vaccine performance.

Involved in all aspects of the development of disease resistance genetics from searching for MHC associations using RFLP, whole genome scans using linkage analysis to mRNA expression analysis particularly in relation to gastro-intestinal parasites in sheep.

Technical expertise in ruminant immunology, cell culture, molecular biology, QTL detection, functional genomics, subtractive cDNA library preparation and array design and fabrication.


Emeritus Professor Gareth Evans

Prof Gareth Evans

Gareth Evans retired from the University of Sydney in 2008. Gareth is a first class honours graduate from University of Oxford with 24 years research experience, predominantly in Australia, with 7 years spent at overseas universities and research institutions; including, 1 year at the University of Illinois, 4 years at the University of Western Ontario, 6 months at the MRC Reproductive Biology Unit in Edinburgh and two 6-month periods at the I.N.R.A. Station Physiologie Reproduction, Tours, France.

Gareth published over 80 refereed articles, including reviews, in international journals and a further 110 papers at national and international conferences. He supervised 20 postgraduate students. Awarded the University of Sydney's Award for Excellence in Teaching in 1991. Currently Scientific Associate of the Zoological Parks Board of NSW. Former member of the Executive Committee, and Secretary, of the Australian Society for Reproductive Biology (ASRB); a founding member of the Australasian Pig Science Association and the Australian Association of Animal Artificial Breeders.

Gareth was instrumental in organising an ASRB's 19th Annual Conference in Sydney in 1987 and the 13th International Congress of Animal Reproduction (ICAR) in Sydney in 1996. Elected to the Standing Committee and the Executive Committee of ICAR, and Secretary General in 1996.
More information.

Dr Sally Isberg

Dr Sally Isberg

Dr Isberg completed a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture degree at the University of Sydney in 1999. During her degree, Sally became fascinated by crocodiles and went on to do a PhD in Animal Genetics at the University of Sydney. The main aim of the project was to develop a genetic improvement program for farmed saltwater crocodiles, and subsequently develop a parentage determination kit, using microsatellite markers to ensure correct pedigree.

Sally and her collaborators were the first to publish evidence of sex-specific recombination in a species that does not have sex chromosomes. Since graduating in 2004, Sally has been employed as the Chief Scientist at Darwin Crocodile Farm NT developing strategies for overcoming production inefficiencies and implementing the findings of her PhD. As a Honorary Associate, Sally continues to have very strong ties with Sydney University in a broad field of areas including genetics, nutrition and endocrinology, and co-supervises a PhD and numerous Honours students. In 2007, Sally also facilitated the online Masters course Advance Animal Genetics.

Further Information

Research Interests:

  • Saltwater crocodiles.
  • Genetic mapping (physical and linkage).
  • QTL detection.
  • Underlying genetic causes of mortality.

Emeritus Professor Chis Maxwell

Professor Chis Maxwell

Chis retired from the University of Sydney in 2008. Chis has had a distinguished career in research, teaching and management with a specialised knowledge in the artificial breeding of domestic animals. Formerly Chief, Sheep and Wool Branch, South Australian Department of Agriculture (1986-91) and Senior Research Officer, Animal Breeding Research Institute, Katanning, Western Australia (1981-86).

He is a member of the International Standing Committee of the International Congress on Animal Reproduction and Chairman of the Editorial Board for the journal Reproduction, Fertility and Development. Over 110 articles have been published in international research journals, 18 reviews & chapters, 94 conference abstracts, and three books, one on artificial insemination in sheep and goats which has been published in three languages and has international sales of over 10,000.

His research has been supported by substantial funding, largely industry-based, amounting to more than $2.1 million, and averaging more than $100,000 per annum since 1980. Research interests include artificial insemination, embryo transfer and manipulation in sheep, goats and pigs.

Current research involves sex preselection by separation of X and Y chromosome-bearing spermatozoa; preservation of mammalian semen (liquid and frozen storage of ram and pig semen).

Research Interests:

  • Applied reproduction in farm animals, specialising in semen.
  • Preservation and controlled breeding.

Dr Ian Martin

Ian Martin retired from the University of Sydney in 1994 and, in the same year, was appointed an Honorary Associate of the Sydney School of Veterinary Science.
Before retirement, he was Director of Laboratory Animal Services for the University from 1989 to 1994. Prior to this, he was a Reader in the Department of Veterinary Physiology in the Sydney School of Veterinary Science.

His research interests have always been in the area of reproductive physiology and animal breeding. Since 1994 he has concentrated on breeding laboratory mice and has established several inbred strains (IQS) from the highly prolific Quackenbush Swiss (QS) outbred line, which the Department of Veterinary Physiology imported from the USA in 1961.

Emeritus Professor Frank Nicholas

Professor Frank Nicholas

Frank Nicholas retired from the University of Sydney in 2007.
He was raised on a sheep/wheat farm in central-western NSW, Frank Nicholas gained a BScAgr degree from the University of Sydney in 1971 and a PhD from the University of Edinburgh in 1974. Since then, he has been lecturing in animal genetics in the Faculties of Veterinary Science and Agriculture at the University of Sydney, and conducting research into a range of issues in population, quantitative and molecular genetics that are relevant to animal production and/or animal health. He has written the textbooks Veterinary Genetics (Clarendon Press, 1987) and Introduction to Veterinary Genetics (Oxford University Press, 1996), and continues to curate Online Mendelian Inheritance in Animals (OMIA) - a database of inherited disorders and other single-locus traits in farm and companion animals (http://www.angis.org.au/Databases/BIRX/omia.)

Before his retirement his research interests include the use of molecular technologies to determine historical relationships among populations of animals, determining the extent to which disorders are inherited, and conducting pedigree analyses to investigate the genetic structure of populations and the effect of inbreeding. He is currently serving on the editorial board of Animal Genetics, and is the President of the Australian Society of Animal Production.
More information.

Research Interests:

  • Control of inherited disorders.
  • Identification of quantitative trait loci.
  • Identification of the genetic basis of inherited.
  • Disorders.
  • Pedigree analysis.

Dr Kyall Zenger

Kyall Zenger

Dr Zenger completed a Masters of Science (Hons) in 1996 and more recently a Doctor of Philosophy (with a Vice-Chancellors Commendation) working on quantitative, population and evolutionary genetics of Australian wildlife. During this time he investigated population and molecular genetics on a diverse range of species including kangaroos and rabbits, and was the first to produce a comprehensive framework genetic linkage map of a marsupial. In addition, he has had many research collaborations on numerous projects including the conservation and management of endangered marsupials as well as QTL and disease localization studies in mice and humans. Prior to his departure Kyall was working with the CRC for Dairy Innovative Products on milk QTL's as well as developing cost effective high-throughput genotyping platforms for dairy cattle.

Research Interests:

  • Comparative genomics.
  • Genetic mapping (physical and linkage).
  • Quantitative trait locus mapping in domestic and model species.
  • Population genetics on endangered or problem Australian species.
  • Theoretical quantitative genetics.