Steve Mutsaers

Associate Professor, BSc PhD W.Aust.

  • The University of Western Australia (M504), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


  • The University of Western Australia (M510), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


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Personal profile


I am currently a Principal Research Fellow within the Institute for Respiratory Health (IRH) and Associate Professor, Centre for Cell Therapy and Regenerative Medicine, School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Western Australia (UWA). My main research interest is investigating the mechanisms regulating tissue repair and regeneration and how a breakdown in these processes lead to disease.


I completed my PhD in 1993 at UWA studying regeneration of the mesothelium and then did my postdoctoral training at the National Heart and Lung Institute and University College London (UCL), UK, studying the role of profibrotic mediators and the extracellular matrix (ECM) in pulmonary fibrosis, mesothelial healing and malignant mesothelioma growth. I obtained research grant funding from several national funding bodies and in 1997 I was promoted to Lecturer, Senior Research Fellow and Research Group Leader in the Department of Medicine, UCL. In 1998 I was awarded a UCL Medical School Prize Lectureship.


I returned to Perth in 2001 after receiving a Raine Medical Research Foundation grant and took up a position at the Institute for Respiratory Health (IRH; formally Lung Institute of Western Australia) and the Department of Medicine, UWA. In 2004 I received grant funding to work on various aspects of pulmonary fibrosis, post-operative adhesion formation, mesothelial repair and mesothelioma growth. In 2006 I was recruited by PathWest Laboratory Medicine WA (WA government pathology service) to establish a research laboratory within the department of Anatomical Pathology. I returned to IRH in 2010 and then in 2012 joined the newly established Centre for Cell Therapy and Regenerative Medicine at UWA.


I have an international reputation in tissue repair and fibrosis, particularly of the lung and mesothelium and in understanding the mechanisms regulating malignant mesothelioma development and growth. My research includes studies using cells and animal models to investigate biological mechanisms which have been translated into human studies using tissues, cells and fluids collected from clinical colleagues. I have obtained funding in Australia and overseas, including NHMRC project grants and a Clinical Centre for Research Excellence. I was the recipient of a Cancer Council WA Research Fellowship in 2013 and in 2014 I was awarded the International Mesothelioma Interest Group (IMIG) Service Award. In 2016 I received the Cancer Council Western Australia Cancer Research Career Achievement Award.


I have published over 80 manuscripts in leading international scientific journals and contributed to seven book chapters. I have had regular invitations to chair sessions and present my work at local, national and international scientific meetings including invited symposium lectures at thoracic, cancer and fibrosis meetings in Australia, UK, Europe, North and Central America. My students have also presented their work at local, national and international meetings and have won numerous awards for their research.


I sit on the editorial board of six international journals, I am an associate editor for the Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine and an international advisor on the International Pleural Newsletter and a member of the WA Virtual Respiratory Centre Editorial Advisory Board. I am an external reviewer for a number of international journals and national and international granting bodies, including the NHMRC, British Lung Foundation, Medical Research Council (UK) and Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation USA (MARF). I have also served for seven years on Grant Review Panels and Development Grant Panels for the NHMRC. I am currently the Chair of the Raine Medical Research Foundation Priming Grants Committee.


I am a member of several national and international societies and am the Past President of the International Mesothelioma Interest Group (IMIG). I have held executive positions on several national societies; convenor of the Thoracic Society of Australia and New Zealand Cell Biology/Immunology Special Interest Group, WA representative for the Australian and New Zealand Society for Cell and Developmental Biology, Convenor of the Western Australian branch of the Australian Society for Medical Research (ASMR), Medical Research Week and ASMR WA Branch Treasurer. I also serve on a number of University committees. I have co-organised two international conferences for IMIG in 1999 and 2002 and in 2010 was the principal organiser of the 16th International Colloquium on Lung and Airway Fibrosis. I have established active research collaborations with groups within Australia, the Netherlands, the UK and USA. In my career to date I have successfully supervised 10 PhD students, three clinical MSc students in Surgical Science and 20 Honours students.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities

Research expertise keywords

  • Lung fibrosis and repair, mesothelium, adhesions


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