PhD (University of Queensland)
Position: Associate Professor

Room: 835 Gehrmann Laboratories 60
Phone: 0400193182


Research Interests

Venoms play a range of adaptive roles in the animal kingdom from predation to defense to competitor deterrence. Remarkably, despite their biological importance and uniqueness, the evolution of venom systems is poorly understood. New insights into the evolution of venom systems and the importance of the associated toxins cannot be advanced without recognition of the true biochemical, ecological, morphological and pharmacological diversity of venoms and associated venom systems. A major limitation has been the very narrow taxonomical range studied. Entire groups of venomous animals remain virtually unstudied. My research is inherently interdisciplinary, integrating ecological, evolutionary, and functional genomics approaches in order to understand the evolution of venom systems. Studies range from discovering the shock-inducing hypotensive and anticoagulant venom of the iconic Komodo Dragon through to exploring the unique temperature specific adaptations of Antarctic octopus venoms.

Selected Publications

Goldstein EJC, Tyrrell KL, Citron DM, Cox CR, Recchio IM, Okimoto B, Bryja J, Fry BG (2012). Anaerobic and aerobic bacteriology of the saliva and gingiva from 16 captive komodo dragons (Varanus komodoensis): new implications for the “bacteria as venom” model. Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 44(2): 262-272.

Low DHW, Sunagar K, Undheim EAB, Ali SA, Alagon AC, Ruder T, Jackson TNW, Gonzalez SP, King GF, Jones A, Antunes A, Fry BG (2013). Dracula’s children: Molecular evolution of vampire bat venom. Journal of Proteomics DOI/10.1016/j.jprot.2013.05.034

Fry BG, Wroe S, Teeuwisse W, van Osch MJP, Moreno K, Ingle J, McHenry C, Ferrara T, Clausen P, Scheib H, Winter KL, Greisman L, Roelants K, van der Weerd L, Clemente CJ, Giannakis E, Hodgson WC, Luz S, Martelli P, Krishnasamy K, Kochva E, Kwok HF, Scanlon D, Karas J, Citron DM, Goldstein EJC, Mcnaughtan JE, Norman JA (2009). A central role for venom in predation by Varanus komodoensis (Komodo Dragon) and the extinct giant Varanus (Megalania) prisca. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science 106(22): 8969-8974.

Vonk FJ, Admiraal JF, Jackson K, Reshef R, de Bakker MA, Vanderschoot K, van den Berge I, van Atten M, Burgerhout E, Beck A, Mirtschin PJ, Kochva E, Witte F, Fry BG, Woods AE, Richardson MK. (2008). Evolutionary origin and development of snake fangs. Nature 454(7204): 630-633.

Fry BG, Vidal N, Norman JA, Vonk FJ, Scheib H, Ramjan R, Kuruppu S, Fung K, Hedges SB, Richardson MK, Hodgson WC, Ignjatovic V, Summerhayes R and Kochva E (2006). Early evolution of the venom system in lizards and snakes. Nature 439(7076): 509-632.

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