Dr Renee M Whan

Dr Renee Whan

Head of Biomedical Imaging Facility

Research profile: Click to view


Renee is Head of the Biomedical Imaging Facility within the Mark Wainwright Analytical Centre. Her main role is overseeing the operation and strategic development of the facility. She leads a team of expert scientists to collaborate and provide research support and training in design, specimen preparation, acquisition and analysis of microscopy data for more than 320 active users. In addition she also conducts research in novel imaging applications to a range of biomedical projects.  

Renee’s interests are in drug delivery, nanomedicine and the application of advanced functional imaging approaches to solve scientific problems. In particular understanding how a drug enters a cell, accumulates and whether it reaches its intracellular target intact to carry out its action is a complex problem and the visualization and characterization of these processes via light and optical microscopy reveals information unattainable readily by other means. Recent publications include; Science Translational Medicine, Stem cells, PNAS, Methods, ACS Nano and Molecular Cancer Therapeutics.

The rapid advances in technology in the area of light and optical imaging have been driven by the need of researchers to visualize and quantify a dynamic process. The applications of fluorescence spectroscopy, spectral imaging, superresolution and image analysis, once in the realm of the mathematician, chemist or biophysicist are becoming more applicable across the disciplines and collaborating with researchers to utilise these tools is a specialization.

Light sheet, FRAP, FLIM, FRET,STED, photoactivation, live cell imaging, superresolution and spectral imaging are some of her favourite techniques.



Book Chapters

Carnell M; Macmillan A; Whan R, 2015, 'Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP): Acquisition, analysis, and applications', in Methods in Membrane Lipids: Second Edition, pp. 255 - 271, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4939-1752-5_18

Journal articles

Awatade N; Wong S; Capraro A; Pandzic E; Slapetova I; Zhong L; Fawcett L; Whan R; Jaffe A; Waters S, 2021, 'Significant functional differences in differentiated Conditionally Reprogrammed (CRC)- and Feeder-free Dual SMAD inhibited-expanded human nasal epithelial cells', Journal of Cystic Fibrosis, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcf.2020.12.019
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Capraro A; Whan R; Thomas S; Jaffe A; Bridge W; Waters S, 2020, 'Novel Antioxidant Therapy with the Immediate Precursor to Glutathione, -Glutamylcysteine (GGC), Ameliorates LPS-Induced Cellular Stress in In Vitro 3D-Differentiated Airway Model from Primary Cystic Fibrosis Human Bronchial Cells', Antioxidants, http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/antiox9121204
Syed SM; Kumar M; Ghosh A; Tomasetig F; Ali A; Whan RM; Alterman D; Tanwar PS, 2020, 'Endometrial Axin2+ Cells Drive Epithelial Homeostasis, Regeneration, and Cancer following Oncogenic Transformation', Cell Stem Cell, vol. 26, pp. 64 - 80.e13, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.stem.2019.11.012
Tjandra KC; McCarthy N; Yang L; Laos AJ; Sharbeen G; Phillips PA; Forgham H; Sagnella SM; Whan RM; Kavallaris M; Thordarson P; McCarroll JA, 2020, 'Identification of Novel Medulloblastoma Cell-Targeting Peptides for Use in Selective Chemotherapy Drug Delivery', Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, vol. 63, pp. 2181 - 2193, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jmedchem.9b00851
Putra VDL; Song MJ; McBride-Gagyi S; Chang H; Poole K; Whan R; Dean D; Sansalone V; Knothe Tate ML, 2020, 'Mechanomics Approaches to Understand Cell Behavior in Context of Tissue Neogenesis, During Prenatal Development and Postnatal Healing', Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology, vol. 7, http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fcell.2019.00354
Millar E; Browne L; Slapetova I; Shang F; Ren Y; Bradshaw R; Brauer HA; O’toole S; Beretov J; Whan R; Graham PH, 2020, 'Tils immunophenotype in breast cancer predicts local failure and overall survival: Analysis in a large radiotherapy trial with long-term follow-up', Cancers, vol. 12, pp. 1 - 15, http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cancers12092365
Pandzic E; Morkel CA; Li A; Cooke R; Whan RM; dos Remedios CG, 2020, 'Nanomolar ATP binding to single myosin cross-bridges in rigor: a molecular approach to studying myosin ATP kinetics using single human cardiomyocytes', Biophysical Reviews, vol. 12, pp. 1031 - 1040, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12551-020-00716-2
Kopecky C; Pandzic E; Parmar A; Szajer J; Lee V; Dupuy A; Arthur A; Fok S; Whan R; Ryder WJ; Rye KA; Cochran BJ, 2019, 'Translocator protein localises to CD11b + macrophages in atherosclerosis', Atherosclerosis, vol. 284, pp. 153 - 159, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2019.03.011
Park M; Richardson A; Pandzic E; Lobo EP; Whan R; Watson SL; Lyons JG; Wakefield D; Di Girolamo N, 2019, 'Visualizing the Contribution of Keratin-14+ Limbal Epithelial Precursors in Corneal Wound Healing', Stem Cell Reports, vol. 12, pp. 14 - 28, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.stemcr.2018.11.014
Sitiwin E; Madigan MC; Gratton E; Cherepanoff S; Conway RM; Whan R; Macmillan A, 2019, 'Shedding light on melanins within in situ human eye melanocytes using 2-photon microscopy profiling techniques', Scientific Reports, vol. 9, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-54871-y
Meiring JCM; Bryce NS; Lastra Cagigas M; Benda A; Whan RM; Ariotti N; Parton RG; Stear JH; Hardeman EC; Gunning PW, 2019, 'Colocation of Tpm3.1 and myosin IIa heads defines a discrete subdomain in stress fibres', Journal of cell science, vol. 132, http://dx.doi.org/10.1242/jcs.228916
Pandžić E; Abu-Arish A; Whan RM; Hanrahan JW; Wiseman PW, 2018, 'Velocity landscape correlation resolves multiple flowing protein populations from fluorescence image time series', Methods, vol. 140-141, pp. 126 - 139, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ymeth.2018.02.011
Sagnella SM; Trieu J; Brahmbhatt H; MacDiarmid JA; MacMillan A; Whan RM; Fife CM; McCarroll JA; Gifford AJ; Ziegler DS; Kavallaris M, 2018, 'Targeted doxorubicin-loaded bacterially derived nano-cells for the treatment of neuroblastoma', Molecular Cancer Therapeutics, vol. 17, pp. 1012 - 1023, http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-17-0738
Vennin C; Chin VT; Warren SC; Lucas MC; Herrmann D; Magenau A; Melenec P; Walters SN; Del Monte-Nieto G; Conway JRW; Nobis M; Allam AH; McCloy RA; Currey N; Pinese M; Boulghourjian A; Zaratzian A; Adam AAS; Heu C; Nagrial AM; Chou A; Steinmann A; Drury A; Froio D; Giry-Laterriere M; Harris NLE; Phan T; Jain R; Weninger W; McGhee EJ; Whan R; Johns AL; Samra JS; Chantrill L; Gill AJ; Kohonen-Corish M; Harvey RP; Biankin AV; Evans TRJ; Anderson KI; Grey ST; Ormandy CJ; Gallego-Ortega D; Wang Y; Samuel MS; Sansom OJ; Burgess A; Cox TR; Morton JP; Pajic M; Timpson P, 2017, 'Transient tissue priming via ROCK inhibition uncouples pancreatic cancer progression, sensitivity to chemotherapy, and metastasis', Science Translational Medicine, vol. 9, http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/scitranslmed.aai8504
Ng JL; Knothe LE; Whan RM; Knothe U; Knothe Tate ML, 2017, 'Scale-up of nature's tissue weaving algorithms to engineer advanced functional materials', Nature Scientific Reports, vol. 7, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep40396
Chua SW; Cornejo A; Van Eersel J; Stevens CH; Vaca I; Cueto M; Kassiou M; Gladbach A; Macmillan A; Lewis L; Whan R; Ittner LM, 2017, 'The Polyphenol Altenusin Inhibits in Vitro Fibrillization of Tau and Reduces Induced Tau Pathology in Primary Neurons', ACS Chemical Neuroscience, vol. 8, pp. 743 - 751, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acschemneuro.6b00433
Pandzic E; Gelissen IC; Whan R; Barter PJ; Sviridov D; Gaus K; Rye KA; Cochran BJ, 2017, 'The ATP binding cassette transporter, ABCG1, localizes to cortical actin filaments', Scientific Reports, vol. 7, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep42025
Yu NYC; O'Brien CA; Slapetova I; Whan RM; Knothe Tate ML, 2017, 'Live Tissue Imaging to Elucidate Mechanical Modulation of Stem Cell Niche Quiescence.', Stem Cells Transl Med, vol. 6, pp. 285 - 292, http://dx.doi.org/10.5966/sctm.2015-0306
Nicovich PR; Janco M; Sobey T; Gajwani M; Obeidy P; Whan R; Gaus K; Gunning PW; Coster ACF; Böcking T, 2016, 'Effect of surface chemistry on tropomyosin binding to actin filaments on surfaces', Cytoskeleton, vol. 73, pp. 729 - 738, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/cm.21342
Chandrakanthan V; Yeola A; Kwan JC; Oliver RA; Qiao Q; Kang YC; Zarzour P; Beck D; Boelen L; Unnikrishnan A; Villanueva JE; Nunez AC; Knezevic K; Palu C; Nasrallah R; Carnell M; Macmillan A; Whan R; Yu Y; Hardy P; Grey ST; Gladbach A; Delerue F; Ittner L; Mobbs R; Walkley CR; Purton LE; Ward RL; Wong JWH; Hesson LB; Walsh W; Pimanda JE, 2016, 'Pdgf-ab and 5-Azacytidine induce conversion of somatic cells into tissue-regenerative multipotent stem cells', Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 113, pp. E2306 - E2315, http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1518244113
Constantine M; Liew CK; Lo V; MacMillan A; Cranfield CG; Sunde M; Whan R; Graham RM; Martinac B, 2016, 'Heterologously-expressed and Liposome-reconstituted Human Transient Receptor Potential Melastatin 4 Channel (TRPM4) is a Functional Tetramer', Scientific Reports, vol. 6, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep19352
Moore SR; Heu C; Yu NYC; Knothe U; Milz S; Knothe Tate ML, 2016, 'Translating Periosteum's Regenerative Power: Insights from Quantitative Analysis of Tissue Genesis with a Periosteum Substitute Implant', Stem Cells Translational Medicine, vol. 5, pp. 1739 - 1749, http://dx.doi.org/10.5966/sctm.2016-0004
Yu NYC; O'Brien CA; Slapetova I; Whan R; Knothe Tate ML, 2016, 'Live cell imaging to elucidate mechanical modulation of stem cell niche quiescence', Stem cells translational medicine, vol. 6, pp. 285 - 292, http://dx.doi.org/10.5966/sctm.2015-0306
Benda A; Aitken H; Davies DS; Whan R; Goldsbury C, 2016, 'STED imaging of tau filaments in Alzheimer's disease cortical grey matter', Journal of Structural Biology, vol. 195, pp. 345 - 352, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jsb.2016.07.003
Carmona-Mora P; Widagdo J; Tomasetig F; Canales CP; Cha Y; Lee W; Alshawaf A; Dottori M; Whan RM; Hardeman EC; Palmer SJ, 2015, 'The nuclear localization pattern and interaction partners of GTF2IRD1 demonstrate a role in chromatin regulation', Human Genetics, vol. 134, pp. 1099 - 1115, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00439-015-1591-0
Carnell M; Macmillan A; Whan R, 2015, 'Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP): Acquisition, analysis, and applications', Methods in Molecular Biology, vol. 1232, pp. 255 - 271, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4939-1752-5_18
Di Girolamo N; Bobba S; Raviraj V; Delic NC; Slapetova I; Nicovich PR; Halliday GM; Wakefield D; Whan R; Lyons JG, 2015, 'Tracing the fate of limbal epithelial progenitor cells in the murine cornea', Stem Cells, vol. 33, pp. 157 - 169, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/stem.1769
Li Y; Duong HTT; Laurent S; Macmillan A; Whan RM; Elst LV; Muller RN; Hu J; Lowe A; Boyer C; Davis TP, 2015, 'Nanoparticles based on star polymers as theranostic vectors: Endosomal-triggered drug release combined with mri sensitivity', Advanced Healthcare Materials, vol. 4, pp. 148 - 156, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.201400164
Sevimli S; Sagnella S; Macmillan A; Whan R; Kavallaris M; Bulmus V; Davis TP, 2015, 'The endocytic pathway and therapeutic efficiency of doxorubicin conjugated cholesterol-derived polymers', Biomaterials Science, vol. 3, pp. 323 - 335, http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/c4bm00224e
Jalilian I; Heu C; Cheng H; Freittag H; Desouza M; Stehn JR; Bryce NS; Whan RM; Hardeman EC; Fath T; Schevzov G; Gunning PW, 2015, 'Cell elasticity is regulated by the tropomyosin isoform composition of the actin cytoskeleton', PLoS ONE, vol. 10, http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0126214
Nicovich PR; Macartney EL; Whan RM; Crean AJ, 2015, 'Measuring Sperm Movement within the Female Reproductive Tract using Fourier Analysis', Microscopy and Microanalysis, vol. 21, pp. 256 - 263, http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S1431927614014627
Dunn AE; Dunn DJ; Macmillan A; Whan R; Stait-Gardner T; Price WS; Lim M; Boyer C, 2014, 'Spatial and temporal control of drug release through pH and alternating magnetic field induced breakage of Schiff base bonds', Polymer Chemistry, vol. 5, pp. 3311 - 3315, http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/C4PY00150H
Sagnella SM; Hien D; MacMillan A; Boyer C; Whan R; McCarroll JA; Davis TP; Kavallaris M, 2014, 'Dextran-Based Doxorubicin Nanocarriers with Improved Tumor Penetration', BIOMACROMOLECULES, vol. 15, pp. 262 - 275, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/bm401526d
Boyer CA, 2013, 'Functionalizing biodegradable dextran scaffolds using living radical polymerization: New versatile nanoparticles for the delivery of therapeutic molecules', Molecular Pharmaceutics, vol. 9, pp. 3046 - 3061, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/mp300144y
Basuki JS; Duong HTT; Macmillan A; Erlich RB; Esser L; Akerfeldt MC; Whan RM; Kavallaris M; Boyer C; Davis TP, 2013, 'Using Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging Microscopy to Monitor Theranostic Nanoparticle Uptake and Intracellular Doxorubicin Release', ACS NANO, vol. 7, pp. 10175 - 10189, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/nn404407g
Bryce NS; Pham BTT; Fong NWS; Jain N; Pan EH; Whan RM; Hambley TW; Hawkett BS, 2013, 'The composition and end-group functionality of sterically stabilized nanoparticles enhances the effectiveness of co-administered cytotoxins', Biomaterials Science, vol. 1, pp. 1260 - 1272, http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/c3bm60120j
Chandra-hioe M; Addepalli R; Osborne SA; Slapetova I; Whan R; Bucknall MP; Arcot J, 2013, 'Transport of folic acid across Caco-2 cells is more effective than 5-methyltetrahydrofolate following the in vitro digestion of fortified bread', Food Research International, vol. 53, pp. 104 - 109, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2013.03.044
Basuki JS; Duong HTT; Boyer C; MacMillan A; Whan R; Davis TP, 2013, 'Polymer-grafted, nonfouling, magnetic nanoparticles designed to selectively store and release molecules via ionic interactions', Macromolecules, vol. 46, pp. 7043 - 7054, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/ma401171d
Morris VB; Selvakumaraswamy P; Whan R; Byrne M, 2011, 'The coeloms in a late brachiolaria larva of the asterinid sea star Parvulastra exigua: deriving an asteroid coelomic model', Acta Zoologica, vol. 92, pp. 266 - 275, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1463-6395.2010.00468.x
Wolfe JE; Ishiwata S; Braet F; Whan R; Su Y; Lal S; dos Remedios CG, 2011, 'SPontaneous Oscillatory Contraction (SPOC): Auto-oscillations observed in striated muscle at partial activation', Biophysical Reviews, vol. 3, pp. 53 - 62, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12551-011-0046-7
dos Remedios CG; Robinson JE; Whan R; Braet F; Su Y; Kraft T; van der Velden J; Marston SB; Steenman M; Macdonald PS; Lal S, 2011, 'Spontaneous Oscillatory Contraction (SPOC): Quantifying the Contractile Performance of Human Cardiomyocytes', Biophysical Journal, vol. 100, pp. 298a - 298a, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bpj.2010.12.1828
Ma Y; Bryce NS; Whan RM; Xiao L; Li K; Ruys AJ; Hambley TW; Boughton P, 2010, 'Growth of DLD-1 colon cancer cells on Variotis™ scaffolds of controlled porosity: A preliminary study', Journal of Biomimetics, Biomaterials, and Tissue Engineering, vol. 8, pp. 79 - 89, http://dx.doi.org/10.4028/www.scientific.net/JBBTE.8.79
Su Y; Nykanen M; Jahn KA; Whan R; Cantrill L; Soon LL; Ratinac KR; Braet F, 2010, 'Multi-dimensional correlative imaging of subcellular events: Combining the strengths of light and electron microscopy', Biophysical Reviews, vol. 2, pp. 121 - 135, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12551-010-0035-2
Morris VB; Selvakumaraswamy P; Whan R; Byrne M, 2009, 'Development of the five primary podia from the coeloms of a sea star larva: homology with the echinoid echinoderms and other deuterostomes', Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, vol. 276, pp. 1277 - 1284, http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2008.1659
Bryce NS; Zhang JZ; Whan RM; Yamamoto N; Hambley TW, 2009, 'Accumulation of an anthraquinone and its platinum complexes in cancer cell spheroids: The effect of charge on drug distribution in solid tumour models', Chemical Communications, pp. 2673 - 2675, http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/b902415h
Whan RM; Messerle BA; Hambley TW, 2009, 'Binding of [Pt(1C3)(dien)]2+ to the duplex DNA oligonucleotide 5¢-d(TGGCCA)-3¢: the effect of an appended positive charge on the orientation and location of anthraquinone intercalation', Journal of the Royal Chemical Society, Dalton Transactions, pp. 932 - 939, http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/b814604g
Zhang J; Whan R; Hambley T, 2008, 'Platinum Anticancer Drugs, Chemical Biology of', , http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/9780470048672.wecb657
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Rm 418, Lowy Cancer Research Center C25, University of New South Wales


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