Immunopathology Group


The research group is interested in the mechanism of allergic inflammation, and the various cells and molecules that are involved in the development of diseases such as asthma and chronic rhinosinusitis.  The group identified a requirement for the cytokine GM-CSF in a model of asthma.  More recently, in collaboration with Dr Richard Harvey and colleagues in the St Vincent’s Centre for Applied Medical Research, we have identified the presence of cytokines made by epithelial cells in samples from patients with eosinophilic chronic rhinosinusitis. We are investigating the cellular targets of these cytokines.

The group has strong links with the pathology department (SydPath) in St Vincent’s Hospital, especially in clinical flow cytometry. In collaboration with A/Prof Stuart Tangye, we have investigated B cell development in clinical bone marrow specimens, in order to better understand the cellular events that underly diseases such as immunodeficiency and lymphoma.  We are also endeavouiring to improve the range of markers used to characterize tumours of the haemopoietic and lymphatic systems in diagnostic pathology.

Selected Publications

Tran DN, Smith S, Brown DA, Parker AJ, Joseph JE, Armstrong N, Sewell WA. Polychromatic flow cytometry is more sensitive than microscopy in detecting small monoclonal plasma cell populations. July 2016. Cytometry B Clin Cytom

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 Aug 16. doi: 10.1038/icb.2011.69.

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

Wang, Y., Jackson, K. J. L., Gaeta, B. A., Pomat, W., Siba, P. M., Sewell, W. A. & Collins, A. M.  Genomic screening by 454 pyrosequencing identifies a new human IGHV gene and sixteen other new IGHV allelic variants.  Immunogenetics. 2011; 63:259-65.

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. 

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.

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

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

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.

Holz, L. E., K. P. Jakobsen, J. Van Snick, F Cormont & W. A. Sewell.  Dexamethasone inhibits IL-9 production by human T cells.  J. Inflammation 2005; 2:3.

Quan, A., M. N. McCall, & W. A. Sewell. Dexamethasone inhibits the binding of nuclear factors to the IL-5 promoter in human CD4+ T cells.  J Allerg Clin Immunol 2001; 108:340-48.

Jackson, G. D. F., Y. Dai & W. A. Sewell.  Bile mediates intestinal pathology in endotoxemia in rats.  Infect. Immun. 2000; 68:4714-19.

Sewell, W. A., L. L. Scurr, H. Orphanides, S. Kinder & R. I. Ludowyke.  Induction of interleukin-4 and interleukin-5 expression in mast cells is inhibited by glucocorticoids.  Clin. Diag. Lab. Immunol. 1998; 5:18-23.

Rolfe, F. G. & W. A. Sewell.  Analysis of human interleukin-5 gene transcription by a novel nuclear run on method based on the polymerase chain reaction.  J. Immunol. Methods 1997; 202:143-151.

Rolfe, F. G., J. E. Valentine & W. A. Sewell.  Cyclosporin A and FK506 inhibit interleukin-5 expression by blocking gene transcription. Am. J. Respir. Cell Mol. Biol. 1997; 17: 243-250.

Sewell, W. A. & H.-H. Mu.  Dissociation of production of interleukin-4 and interleukin-5.  Immunol. Cell Biol. 1996; 74:274-277.

Mu, H.-H. & W. A. Sewell. Enhancement of Interleukin-4 production by pertussis toxin.  Infect. Immun. 1993; 61:2834-2840.

Boyle, M. J., E. Vasak, M. Tschuchnigg, J. J. Turner, T. B. Sculley, R. Penny,  D. A. Cooper, B. Tindall & W. A. Sewell.  Subtypes of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) in Hodgkin's Disease: Association between B-type EBV and immunodeficiency. Blood  1993; 81:468-474.

Rolfe, F. G., J. M. Hughes, C. L. Armour and W. A. Sewell. Inhibition of Interleukin 5 gene expression by dexamethasone.  Immunology 1992; 77:494-499.

Boyle, M.J., W. A. Sewell, T. Sculley, A. Apolloni, J. J. Turner, C. E. Swanson, R. Penny & D. A. Cooper.  Subtypes of Epstein-Barr virus in HIV-associated non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma.   Blood 1991; 78:3004-3011.

Sewell, W. A., M. H. Brown, J. Dunne, M. J. Owen and M. J. Crumpton. Molecular cloning of the human T lymphocyte surface CD2 (T11) antigen. PNAS USA 1986; 83:8718-8722. 

More Garvan Publications

Staff in the Group

Lydia Zammit

Executive Assistant