Dr Andrew Crowe
Andrew is a pharmacologist who researches the role of active efflux proteins – which transport compounds like toxic substances and antibiotics out of cells – in health and disease. In particular, he’s interested in the mechanisms that allow pharmaceutically relevant compounds both into the body and through barriers within it, including those present in the blood-brain barrier and the gastrointestinal tract.
Studying the attachment of bacteria to cells expressing these proteins, which contributes to disease progression, as well as ways of inducing the production of the proteins in human cells are also avenues of Andrew’s research. He also has an interest in the influence of iron and copper on metabolism and changes in cancer tumour growth.
Andrew is currently exploring ways to accelerate drug efflux assays in vitro to provide a more rapid yet still accurate determination of whether cells can stop drugs reaching their targets, and therefore becoming resistant to treatment, using a human cell line clone developed in his CHIRI laboratory.
Each of Andrew’s current areas of research focus have a common goal – to improve the effectiveness of drug treatments and their uptake for patients with age-associated diseases. He’s previously completed research projects aimed at identifying patients with inflammatory bowel disease at an early stage; and is interested in drug discovery using natural products, in particular extracts from marine organisms that may have some benefit in cancer chemotherapy.
As well as running his research group, Andrew teaches preclinical sciences to Curtin University research students, including biochemistry, physiology, parasitology, microbiology and pharmacology.
Research interests – pharmacology; biochemisty; physiology; parasitology; microbiology; active efflux proteins; metabolism (including influence of iron and copper).