A/Prof Daniel Christ

Lab Head - Antibody Therapeutics

Principal Research Fellow

Conjoint/Adjunct Role(s)

Conjoint Associate Professor, St Vincent's Clinical School, Faculty of Medicine, UNSW Australia
Founder and Chief Scientific Officer, Solvanix Pty Ltd
Director Centre for Targeted Therapy

Daniel Christ is Head of Antibody Therapeutics and Director of the Centre of Targeted Therapy at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney, Australia 

He trained at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), and at Cambridge University, where he worked with British biotechnology pioneer Sir Gregory Winter at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology. Winter had shown that in vitro evolution technology (such as phage display) can be used for the generation of therapeutic antibodies, initiating a multi-billion dollar biotechnology industry. At Cambridge, Christ and Winter further developed monoclonal antibody technology, particularly in the field of domain antibodies. He was elected a Fellow of Trinity College (Cambridge University) at age 29 and was involved the foundation of Domantis Ltd (sold to GSK for £230 million in 2006). 

In 2007 Daniel joined the Garvan as Head of Antibody Therapeutics, to translate structural and genomic advances into drug candidates and treatments for cancer and inflammatory conditions. 
His contributions have been recognised by multiple prizes and appointments, including the NHMRC Excellence award, and by the award of more than 15 competitive research grants from the NHMRC and ARC in recent years. 

Christ and co-workers utilise high-troughput selection and sequencing approaches in combination with biochemical and X-ray crystallographic analyses to study and engineer the interaction between therapeutic antibodies and their targets. 

Research Interests

Biotechnology
Antibody therapeutics
Protein engineering
Phage display

Awards and Honours

2013 - NHMRC Excellence Award (top ranked fellowship)
2002 - Fellow, Trinity College, Cambridge University
1999 - ERS PhD Scholarship, Trinity College, Cambridge University
1999 - Swiss Federal Institute of Technology ETH Award

Education

2003 - PhD, Cambridge University - UK
1999 - Dipl Natw (MSc), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) - Switzerland

Selected Publications

Rodrigo Vazquez-Lombardi, Tri Giang Phan, Carsten Zimmermann, David Lowe, Lutz Jermutus and Daniel Christ (2015) Challenges and opportunities for non-antibody scaffold drugs Drug Discovery Today in press

Structural basis for epitope masking and strain specificity of a conserved epitope in an intrinsically disordered malaria vaccine candidate Rodrigo A. V. Morales, Christopher A. MacRaild, Jeffrey Seow, Bankala Krishnarjuna, Nyssa Drinkwater, Romain Rouet, Robin F. Anders, Daniel ChristSheena McGowan and Norton RS (2015) Scientific Reports 
E5: 1-10

Rogue Germinal Center B cells: Unconventional lymphocytes released by FAS inactivation that drive IgE and autoantibody production Danyal Butt, Tyani D Chan, Katherine Bourne, Jana R. Hermes, Akira Nguyen, Aaron Statham, Lorraine A. O’Reilly, Andreas Strasser, Susan Price, Peter Schofield1, Daniel Christ, Antony Basten, Cindy S. Ma, Stuart G. Tangye, Tri Giang Phan, V. Koneti Rao and Robert Brink. (2015) Immunity 42 (5): 890-902

Romain Rouet, Kip Dudgeon, Mary Christie, David Langely and Daniel Christ (2015) Fully human VH domains that rival the stability and cleft-recognition of camelid antibodies. J. Biol. Chem. 290 (19): 11905-11917

Andrew Bradbury et al. (2015) Reproducibility: Standardize antibodies used in research. Nature 518(7537): 27-29 [co-signatory]

Mark D Allen, Mary Christie, Peter Jones, Benjamin T Porebski, Brendan Roome, Stefan MV Freund, Ashley M Buckle, Mark Bycroft  and Daniel Christ (2015) Solution structure of a soluble fragment derived from a membrane protein by shotgun proteolysis. Prot. Engin. Des. Sel. gzu026

Romain Rouet and Daniel Christ (2014) Bispecific antibodies with native chain structure. Nature Biotechnology 32(2): 136-7

Joseph Swift, Sopany Saing , Romain Rouet, Kip Dudgeon, Peter Schofield, William Sewell and Daniel Christ (2014) Identification of aggregation inhibitors of the human antibody light chain repertoire by phage display. Prot. Engin. Des. Sel. 27(10): 405-9

Sabouri Z, Peter Schofield, Keisuke Horikawa, Emily Spierings, David Kipling, Katrina L Randall, David Langely, Brendan Roome, Rodrigo Vazquez-Lombardi, Romain Rouet, Jana Hermes, Tyani D Chan, Robert Brink, Deborah K Dunn-Walters, Daniel Christ* and  Christopher C Goodnow* (2014) Redemption of autoantibodies on anergic B cells by V-region glycosylation and mutation away from self-reactivity. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 111(25): 2567-2575 [*joint senior and corresponding authors]

Itmar Kass, David Hoke, (...) David Langely, Brendan Roome, Ian R Mackack, Daniel Christ, Malcolm Buckle, Paiardini A, De Biase D and Ashley M Buckle (2014) "Cofactor-dependent conformational heterogeneity of GAD65 and its role in autoimmunity and neurotransmitter homeostasis", Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 111(25): 2524-2529

Romain Rouet, David Lowe and Daniel Christ (2014) Stability Engineering of the human antibody repertoire. FEBS Letters 588(2): 269-77

Domique Gatto, Katherine Wood, Caminschi I, Danielle Murphy-Durland, Peter Schofield, Daniel Christ, Karupiah G and Robert Brink. (2013) The chemotactic receptor EBI2 regulates the homeostasis, localization and immune function of splenic dendritic cells. 
Nature Immunology 14(5): 446-453

Rodrigo Vazquez-Lombardi, Brendan Roome and Daniel Christ (2013) Molecular Engineering of Therapeutic Cytokines Antibodies 2: 426-451

Iwana Schmitz, Christoph Schneider, Anja Frohlich, Helge Frebel, Daniel Christ, Warren J Leonard, Tim Sparwasser, Anette Oxenius, Stefan Freigang and Manfred Kopf (2013) IL-21 Restricts Virus-driven Treg Cell Expansion in Chronic LCMV Infection PLOS Pathogens 9: e100336                                                                            

Kip Dudgeon, Romain Rouet and Daniel Christ (2013) Rapid prediction of expression and refolding yields using phage display. Prot. Engin. Des. Sel. 26(10): 671-674

Olga Esteban, Daniel Christ and Daniela Stock (2013) Purification of molecular machines and nanomotors using phage derived monoclonal antibody fragments. Methods Mol. Biol. – Protein Nanotechnology 996: 203-217

Kip Dudgeon, Romain Rouet, Iris Kokmeijer, Peter Schofield, Jessica Stolp, David Langely, Daniela Stock and Daniel Christ (2012) General strategy for the generation of human antibody variable domains with increased aggregation resistance. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 109: 10879-10884

Romain Rouet, Kip Dudgeon, Peter Schofield, David Lowe, Lutz Jermutus and Daniel Christ (2012) Expression of high affinity antibody fragments in bacteria. Nature Protoc. 7: 364-373

Romain Rouet, Kip Dudgeon and Daniel Christ (2012) Generation of human single domain antibody repertoires by Kunkel mutagenesis. Methods Mol. Biol. 907: 195-209

Kip Dudgeon, Kristoffer Famm, Romain Rouet and Daniel Christ (2012) Selection of human VH single domains with improved biophysical properties by phage display. Methods Mol. Biol. 911: 383-397

Helen McGuire, Alexis Vogelzang, Cindy S Ma, William E Hughes, Pablo Silveira, Stuart G. Tangye, Daniel Christ, David Fulcher, Marika Falcone  and Cecile King. (2011) A Subset of Interleukin-21+ Chemokine Receptor CCR9+ T Helper Cells Target Accessory Organs of the Digestive System in Autoimmunity. Immunity 34(4): 602-615

Sandra A. O'Toole, Dorothy A. Machalek, Robert F. Shearer, Ewan K.A. Millar, Radhika Nair, Peter Schofield, Duncan McLeod, Caroline L. Cooper, Catriona M. McNeil, Andrea McFarland, Akira Nguyen, Christopher J. Ormandy, Min Ru Qiu, Brian Rabinovich, Luciano G. Martelotto, Duc Vu, Gregory E. Hannigan, Elizabeth A. Musgrove, Daniel Christ, Robert L. Sutherland, D. Neil Watkins, and Alexander Swarbrick (2011) Hedgehog overexpression is associated with stromal interactions and predicts for poor outcome in breast cancer. Cancer Res. 71(11): 4002-4014

David Lowe, Kip Dudgeon, Romain Rouet, Peter Schofield, Lutz Jermutus and Daniel Christ (2011) Aggregation, stability, and formulation of human antibody therapeutics. Adv. Protein Chem. 84: 1-206

Helen McGuire, Stacey Walters, Alexis Vogelzang, Carol M Lee, Kylie E Webster, Jonathan Sprent, Daniel Christ, Shane T Grey and Cecile King. (2011) Interleukin-21 is critically required in autoimmune and allogeneic responses to islet tissue in murine models. Diabetes 60(3): 867-75.

A/Prof Daniel Christ