A/Prof William Sewell

Group Leader - Immunopathology

Conjoint/Adjunct Role(s)

Associate Professor, St Vincent's Clinical School, Faculty of Medicine, UNSW Sydney

My research has focussed on allergic inflammation and on leukocyte surface markers. I was the first to determine the primary sequence of the T lymphocyte surface marker CD2. My group was the first to recognize that expression of the cytokine IL-5 was profoundly inhibited by glucocorticoids.  This was an important step leading to the development of therapeutic antibodies that inhibit the function of IL-5. 

Through my appointment to the University of NSW, I have extensive experience in education, both at the undergraduate and post-graduate level. In the post-graduate area, I have been supervisor of numerous PhD and Honours students.  I have had substantial experience in teaching medical undergraduate students at all stages of the UNSW course.  At St. Vincent’s Hospital, I work in immunopathology, where I provide special expertise in flow cytometry.

I am currently Chief Examiner in Immunopathology for the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia, and Director of Graduate Students for the Faculty of Medicine, University of NSW.  I have served as Vice-President of the Australasian Flow Cyotmetry Group for the last 4 years and was on the organizing committee of the 2010 Annual Meeting.  I have served on numerous NHMRC Committees, and on the Editorial Board of Immunology and Cell Biology, the official journal of the Australasian Society for Immunology. 

Research Interests

Cellular interaction in allergic inflammation; role of epithelial-derived cytokines; role of type 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2); role of T cell-derived cytokines; role of chemokines
Cellular markers of clinical tumours of haematopoietic and lymphoid tissues; assessment of these tumours by flow cytometrty
Markers of normal human lymphocytes


1993 - Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia
1984 - PhD, University of Melbourne - Australia
1978 - MBBS, First Class Honours, University of Sydney - Australia
1975 - BSc, First Class Honours with University Medal, University of Sydney - Australia

Selected Publications

Agrawal, S., Smith, S. A. B. C., Tangye, S. G. & Sewell, W. A.  Transitional B cell subsets in human bone marrow.  Clin Exp Immunol 2013; 174:53-9. 

Lam, M., Hull, L., McLachlan, R., Snidvongs, K., Chin, D., Pratt, E., Kalish, L., Sacks, R., Earls, P., Sewell, W., Harvey RJ. Clinical severity and epithelial endotypes in chronic rhinosinusitis. Int Forum Allergy Rhinol.  2013; 3:121-8.

Shim, D. S. C., Schilter, H. C., Knott, M. L., Almeida, R. A., Short, R., Mackay, C. R., Dent, L. A. & Sewell, W. A. Protection against Nippostrongylus brasiliensis infection in mice is independent of GM-CSF.  Immunol Cell Biol 2012; 90:553-8.

Jackson, K. J. L., Wang, Y., Gaeta, B. A., Pomat, W., Siba, P., Rimmer, J., A. Sewell, W. A., Collins, A. M. Divergent human populations show extensive shared IGK rearrangements in peripheral blood B cells. Immunogenetics. 2012; 64:3-14.

Sewell, W. A. & Smith, S. A. B. C. Polychromatic flow cytometry in the clinical laboratory.  Pathology 2011; 43:580-591.

Pratt, E., Collins, A. M., Sewell, W. A. & Harvey, R. J. Antigen selection in IgE antibodies from individuals with chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps. Am J Rhinol Allergy 2010; 24:416-21.

Collins, A. M., Y. Wang, V. Singh, P. Yu, K. J. Jackson & W. A. Sewell. The reported germline repertoire of human immunoglobulin kappa chain genes is relatively complete and accurate.  Immunogenetics 2008; 60:669-76. 

Shum, B. O. V., M. S. Rolph & W. A. Sewell. Mechanisms in allergic airway inflammation – lessons from studies in the mouse. Expert Rev. Mol. Med. 2008; 10(15):1-18.

Su, Y.-C., M. S. Rolph, N. G. Hansbro, C. R. Mackay & W. A. Sewell. Granulocyte-macrophage colony–stimulating factor is required for bronchial eosinophilia in a murine model of allergic airway inflammation.  J. Immunol.  2008; 180:2600-2607.

Dahlke, I., D. J. Nott, J. Ruhno, W. A. Sewell & A. M. Collins. Antigen selection in the IgE response of allergic and non-allergic individuals. J Allerg Clin Immunol 2006; 117:1477-83.

Su, Y.-C., M. S. Rolph, M. A. Cooley, W. A. Sewell. (2006) Cyclophosphamide Augments Inflammation by Reducing Immunosuppression in a Mouse Model of Allergic Airway Disease. J Allerg Clin Immunol 2006; 117:635-641.

Belov, L., S. P. Mulligan, N. Barber, A. Woolfson, M. Scott, K. Stoner, J. S. Chrisp, W. A. Sewell, K.F. Bradstock, L. Bendall, D. S. Pascovici, M. Thomas, W. Erber, P. Huang, M. Sartor, G. A. Young, J. S. Wiley, S. Juneja, W. G. Wierda, A. R. Green, M. J. Keating & R. I. Christopherson. Analysis of human leukaemias and lymphomas using extensive immunophenotypes from an antibody microarray. Br. J. Haematol. 2006; 135:184-97.

A/Prof William Sewell