After obtaining a Bachelor of Science degree in 2013, Oliver completed an honours project under Professor Leann Tilley and Dr Matthew Dixon at The University of Melbourne, studying cellular remodelling in red blood cells infected by sexual stage Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites.
In 2015 he continued to work under Professor Tilley and Dr Dixon, completing his PhD investigating the assembly of the Plasmodium falciparum virulence complex. Specifically, this work focused on the arrival and arrangement of parasite-derived proteins at the red blood cell membrane, as well as host cell remodelling events that facilitate parasite virulence. This work was achieved with a focus on the use of single-molecule light microscopy.
Following his PhD studies, Oliver moved to Sydney to work under Dr Renee Whan at The University of New South Wales Biomedical Imaging Facility. In this position he specialised in super-resolution imaging and establishing automated imaging systems. In addition to this he gained technical expertise across a wide range of light microscopes.
Oliver is currently working in the Malaria Virulence and Drug Discovery group under Dr Paul Gilson and Professor Brendan Crabb. He is investigating the effectiveness and mechanism of action of anti-malarial drugs, with a particular interest in the inhibition of protein export pathways.
2015: PhD in parasitology (Plasmodium falciparum), Bio21 Institute, University of Melbourne, Australia
2014: BSc (Honours), Bio21 Institute, University of Melbourne, Australia
2013: BSc, University of Melbourne, Australia
- The Medicines for Malaria Venture Malaria Box contains inhibitors of protein secretion in Plasmodium falciparum blood stage parasites.
Looker O, Dans MG, Bullen HE, Sleebs BE, Crabb BS, Gilson PR
Traffic. 2022 Sep; 23(9):442-461
- The Plasmodium falciparum parasitophorous vacuole protein P113 interacts with the parasite protein export machinery and maintains normal vacuole architecture.
Bullen HE, Sanders PR, Dans MG, Jonsdottir TK, Riglar DT, Looker O, Palmer CS, Kouskousis B, Charnaud SC, Triglia T, Gabriela M, Schneider MP, Chan JA, de Koning-Ward TF, Baum J, Kazura JW, Beeson JG, Cowman AF, Gilson PR, Crabb BS
Mol Microbiol. 2022 Apr; 117(5):1245-1262
- Multimodal imaging reveals membrane skeleton reorganisation during reticulocyte maturation and differences in dimple and rim regions of mature erythrocytes.
Adam J Blanch, Juan Nunez-Iglesias, Arman Namvar, Sebastien Menant, Oliver Looker, Vijay Rajagopal, Wai-Hong Tham, Leann Tilley, Matthew W A Dixon
J Struct Biol X. 2021 Dec; 6:100056
- Surface area-to-volume ratio, not cellular viscoelasticity, is the major determinant of red blood cell traversal through small channels.
Arman Namvar, Adam J Blanch, Matthew W Dixon, Olivia M S Carmo, Boyin Liu, Snigdha Tiash, Oliver Looker, Dean Andrew, Li-Jin Chan, Wai-Hong Tham, Peter V S Lee, Vijay Rajagopal, Leann Tilley
Cell Microbiol. 2021 Jan; 23(1):e13270
- Role of Plasmodium falciparum Protein GEXP07 in Maurer's Cleft Morphology, Knob Architecture, and P. falciparum EMP1 Trafficking.
Emma McHugh, Olivia M S Carmo, Adam Blanch, Oliver Looker, Boyin Liu, Snigdha Tiash, Dean Andrew, Steven Batinovic, Andy J Y Low, Hyun-Jung Cho, Paul McMillan, Leann Tilley, Matthew W A Dixon
mBio. 2020 Mar; 11(2)
- Reversible host cell remodeling underpins deformability changes in malaria parasite sexual blood stages.
Megan Dearnley, Trang Chu, Yao Zhang, Oliver Looker, Changjin Huang, Nectarios Klonis, Jeff Yeoman, Shannon Kenny, Mohit Arora, James M Osborne, Rajesh Chandramohanadas, Sulin Zhang, Matthew W A Dixon, Leann Tilley
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2016 Apr; 113(17):4800-4805