New Musculoskeletal Genomics Group Leader joins Mater Research


Dr John Kemp is widely recognised as an expert in the field of osteoporosis genomics, and he now brings this expertise to Mater Research as the Group Leader of the Musculoskeletal Genomics Group.

Dr Kemp, who completed his PhD at the University of Bristol in 2013 before taking up a Postdoctoral Research Fellow position at The University of Queensland, is excited to join Mater Research for the ability to deliver a medical translation pipeline within the one organisation.

“Mater Research’s access to a diverse range of both laboratory-based scientists and clinicians with expertise in musculoskeletal research makes Mater the ideal environment in which to realise my vision of translating our research into better health outcomes for patients with osteoporosis,” Dr Kemp said.

Dr Kemp has published numerous papers on osteoporosis genetics in high impact journals, including Nature Genetics, and has previously identified over 500 regions in the human genome that are associated with osteoporosis susceptibility. The data generated by this study has tremendous potential to uncover new biological mechanisms and therapeutic targets for treatment of osteoporosis.

Dr Kemp’s research vision is to accelerate drug development for patients with osteoporosis. The Musculoskeletal Genomics Group is developing innovative ways to combine information from statistical and molecular genetics studies of the skeleton to identify genes that represent novel drug targets for treating patients with osteoporosis.

Dr Kemp is excited to have the opportunity to establish this Research Group and set foundations for a safe, respectful and inclusive team environment that is conducive to high performance and top-quality research. “I hope to work with my Group to advance our understanding of osteoporosis and identify new biological mechanisms that can be targeted to build bone in patients that are prone to fragility fractures,” Dr Kemp said.

Mater Research Executive Director and Chief Research Officer Professor Maher Gandhi said it was great to have Dr Kemp on board at Mater Research.

“The new Musculoskeletal Genomics Group means Mater Research will develop capacity in this important area of bone and women’s health. More broadly Dr Kemp’s expertise in statistical genetics and big data sets will be important in a range of topics across molecular biology and genetic studies,” Professor Gandhi said.

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