Dr John Clulow
|Work Phone||(02) 4921 5721|
|Fax||(02) 4921 6923|
School of Environmental and Life Sciences
The University of Newcastle, Australia
- PhD, University of Newcastle, 1988
- Bachelor of Science (Honours), University of Newcastle, 1980
- Bachelor of Arts, University of Newcastle, 1979
- conservation biology
- reproductive physiology
My research expertise is at the interface of two primary areas: Conservation Biology and Reproductive Biology. My original background was in the area of reproductive physiology where I pursued interests in the physiology of the testis and the epididymis (the duct that drains sperm and fluid from the testis, and stores sperm until ejaculation). I took a comparative approach and investigated and published on the role of epididymis in birds, eutherian mammals and marsupials. My research had an emphasis on how the efferent ducts (the first ducts to leave the testis) reabsorb fluid, with published studies on the mechanisms of epithelial transport and the signal transduction systems that control that transport. My main discovery in this area was that reabsorption by the efferent ducts is controlled by down regulation through the cAMP system. I have also extensively characterised the processes of fluid transport by the efferent duct systems in both birds and mammals, and have shown amongst other things that the process is highly dependent on sodium transport, in particular the Na-H exchanger, and that the efferent duct epithelium is highly permeable to the diffusion of small molecules in both directions. My published studies concluded that the epithelium is both permeable and displays a high level of active solute transport across its walls; the physiological purpose of which is to concentrate and mature the sperm in the epididymis prior to ejaculation. This work was a collaboration with Assoc Prof RC Jones. Most of this work has been published between 1995 and 2005.
Since the early 1990s, I have developed an interest in Conservation Biology which is an outgrowth of my research expertise in reproductive biology. Since the 1980s, it was becoming more obvious to herpetologists that there was an extinction crisis developing amongst the worlds amphibians (Australia was not spared, with around 10 extinctions from unknown causes, later shown to be due to a new global amphibian fungal pandemic, and many more species in decline). I recognised early in the 1990s that there were few tools to conserve amphibians when conservation actions in the wild were not successful, including a lack of reproduction tools such as assisted reproduction techniques, and especially a lack of cryopreservation procedures to retrievably store amphibians in the form of viable sperm, eggs and embryos. I formed a collaboration with Assoc Prof M Mahony from the early 1990s to use my expertise in reproduction to develop procedures to cryopreserve amphibian sperm, eggs and embryos, and have been continuing this research ever since. It has led to a number of papers published since 1998 in this area, particularly relating to the development of procedures for the successful cryopreservation of amphibian sperm (papers continue to be published in this area, including in press, 2007). The aim of this research is ultimately to contribute the required technologies to allow the establishment and functioning of an amphibian genome storage bank, that can act as a conservation management tool, and be used to insure amphibian species against extinction in the wild.
Fields of Research
|060299||Ecology Not Elsewhere Classified||35|
|060899||Zoology Not Elsewhere Classified||35|
|079999||Agricultural And Veterinary Sciences Not Elsewhere Classified||30|
Centres and Groups
Body relevant to professional practice.
- Australian Society of Herpetologists
- Physiological and Pharmacological Society
- Royal Zoological Society of NSW
- Society for Reproductive Biology
European Academy of Andrology Prize for 1997 for an outstanding publication in the International Jou
European Academy of Andrology (United Kingdom)
This was awarded to John Clulow (and RC Jones and LA Hansen) for contributions to the understanding of endocrine regulation of the male reproductive tract
1st International Symposium on ART for Wildlife
Henry Doorly Zoo, Omaha, United States (Conference Presentation - non published.)
International Conference of the Federation of Australasian and Oceanian Physiological Societies
Federation of Australian and Oceanian Physiological Societies, Australia (Interntional Conference - Invited Speaker)
Aust Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; ANZ Scty for Cell and Dev Biology
Combio, Australia (Invited Speaker - National Conference)
Boden Conference on the Epididymis
Boden Conferences, Australia (Invited Speaker, International Conference)
Until my appointment as a lecturer in the School of Environmental and Life Sciences, I undertook many administrative functions in my previous designation as a Professional Officer in the same school. I continue to perform administrative roles since my appointment as a lecturer in 2002. These include:
Academic Administration. I am course co-ordinator for three forensic biology subjects, and programme convenor for the B Sc. (Forensics) degree programme. I have served for 3 years on the Life Science Honours Programme Committee until 2007.
Management of Amphibian Holding Facilities. I am joint manager with Ms R Gentle of the amphibian holding facilities, and am responsible for overseeing the frog holdings of the University. These include native amphibian species, and cane toads that are used by my own research group and by other researchers in the University.
Animal Service Unit Committee and Animal Care and Ethics Committee. I continue to serve as a member of the Animal Services Committee of the University; this provides oversight and advice to the University on matters of animal facilities administration (ongoing position since 2000). I have also served at times on the Universitys Animal Care and Ethics Committee
- animal physiology
- commercialising biotechnology
- environmental biology
- forensic biology
Since my appointment as a lecturer in 2002, I have taught in a number fields including: introductory zoology/animal structure and function; forensic biology; environmental biology and commercialisation and finance in biotechnology.
The zoology/animal structure and function teaching was a contribution to the introductory biology causes for first year science students. These covered areas such as the phylogeny and taxonomic organisation within the animal kingdom, the evolution of tissue and organ systems in animals, and their adaptations to the environments of animals from marine to terrestrial evolution (evolution of the animal body plan).
In the area of forensic science, I have been the principal lecturer from the biological sciences discipline responsible for teaching forensic biology into the forensic science degree which was established at Newcastle University in 2000. I was entirely responsible for developing the forensic biology content of lectures and practicals in courses in 2nd and 3rd Year in that degree. My topics covered in both practicals and lectures included DNA profiling, body fluid analysis (hematology, semenology), blood alcohol physiology and evidence, and forensic entomology. Since 2005, I have been the programme convenor for the undergraduate degree in forensic science, responsible for the academic administration of that degree.
In addition to qualifications in science, I also have post-graduate qualifications in the field of finance (Graduate Diploma in Applied Finance). I have used this expertise to be the driver in establishing a 10 credit point course for 3rd Year biotechnology students that deals with the process of commercialising biotechnology. I have been entirely responsible for the creation and ongoing development of this course, and have been the course co-ordinator since its inception. I also am responsible for most of the teaching in the subject. I designed the assessment system based around participation in workshops, some direct examination, and a primary assessment item that involved a research project on an Australian biotechnology company listed on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX). The reason for setting a project on ASX listed companies was the amount of publicly available information that must be released as a requirement of the ASX listing rules relating to public disclosure and the similar requirements of the Corporations ACT. This information resource allows students to explore much of the financial information and intellectual property of companies that is relevant to understanding how they operate in the commercial environment. Key topics covered in lectures include technological drivers in commercialising biotechnology, capital management structures and strategies in biotech companies (venture capital to mature companies), valuing biotech companies using discounted cash flow methodologies and the role of the IP portfolio and clinical trials in company business models.
I also currently supervise honours and post-graduate students (Masters and PhDs), and have done so since the mid-1990s.