Staff profile: Dr Martin Smith

Dr Martin Smith is the Genomic Technologies Program lead at the KCCG
27 April 2018

Dr Smith has always known that he wanted to be a biologist and enjoyed "mucking around" with computers. He started out in microbiology and virology, but found his perfect fit in bioinformatics, a field that combines his two lifelong interests.

Originally from Canada, he came to Australia to do a PhD in Brisbane as part of the Mattick Lab. He investigated the conservation of the secondary structures of RNA (the ways strands of RNA fold back on themselves) in noncoding regions of mammalian genomes.

Dr Smith then moved to Garvan as a Senior Research Officer in the RNA Biology and Plasticity Group, before joining the KCCG.

His role involves managing a small team of experts that evaluate and implement the latest genomic technologies. They work to expand the Garvan’s genomics capabilities, working out how these technologies can be used to improve and expand research.

He is motivated by using the most advanced technologies to solve technically challenging processes, reduce complex data into informative results, and help decode the mysteries of the genome.

“Knowing that we have the technical capabilities to drastically reduce disease burden in society is a great source of motivation for me, especially when surrounded by outstanding and like-minded researchers. Also, coffee!”