Griffith University

Joshua Wingerd

Name: Joshua Wingerd
Position: Research Fellow
Research Area: Cancer
Qualifications: BSc, PhD

Biography: Josh obtained his Bachelor of Science with an emphasis on Cellular and Molecular Biology from San Diego State University in 2004. After graduation, Josh joined the Biology R&D team at Vertex Pharmaceuticals in San Diego where he implemented cellular assays for ion channel drug discovery HTS programs and hit-to-lead optimization. He then moved to Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UCSD to join the natural products drug discovery group of Prof. William Gerwick in the search for novel anti-cancer and neuromodulatory compounds from the ocean. In 2008, Josh moved across the Pacific to the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland to begin a PhD in Molecular Pharmacology, specifically involving the discovery, functional characterization, and engineering of venom peptides targeting voltage-gated ion channels associated with chronic pain. After completion of the PhD, Josh was employed on an ARC Linkage grant between UQ and Alchemia where he managed HTS screening and electrophysiological characterization of small molecule leads for the VAST synthetic medicinal chemistry library. The VAST project focused on developing a functionally selective inhibitor for the pain target, NaV1.7. In June 2017 Josh joined the Cancer Therapeutics CRC team.



Wingerd, J.S., Mozar, C., Üssing, C., Murali, S., Chin, Y.K.Y., Cristofori-Armstrong, B., Durek, T., Gilchrist, J., Vaughan,C.W., Bosmans, F., Adams, D.J.,Lewis, R.J., Alewood, P.F., Mobli, M., Christie, M.J., Rash, L.R. (2017). The tarantula venom peptide, β/δ-TRTX-Pre1a, displays unique pharmacology at voltage-gated sodium channels, highlighting the importance of the S2 helix for subtype-dependent interactions. Scientific Reports 974 (7)

Deuis, J.R., Dekan, Z., Wingerd, J.S., Smith, J.J., Munasinghe, N.R., Bhola, R.F., Imlach, W.L., Herzig, V., Armstrong, D.A., Rosengren, K.J. and Bosmans, F., (2017). Pharmacological characterisation of the highly NaV1.7 selective spider venom peptide Pn3a. Scientific Reports 40883 (7).

Deuis, J.R.; Wingerd, J.S.; Winter, Z.; Durek, T.; Dekan, Z.; Sousa, S.R.; Zimmermann, K.; Hoffmann, T.; Weidner, C.; Nassar, M.A.; Alewood, P.F.; Lewis, R.J.; Vetter, I. (2016) Analgesic Effects of GpTx-1, PF-04856264 and CNV1014802 in a Mouse Model of NaV1.7-Mediated Pain. Toxins 78 (8).

Muttenthaler, M., Dutertre, S., Wingerd, J.S., Aini, J.W., Walton, H., Alewood, P., Lewis, R. Abundance and diversity of Conus species (Gastropoda: Conidae) at the northern tip of New Ireland province of Papua New Guinea (2012) The Nautilus 126 (2), pp.47-56

Vetter, I., Mozar, C.A., Durek, T., Wingerd, J.S., Alewood, P.F., Christie, M.J., Lewis, R.J. (2012) Characterisation of NaV types endogenously expressed in human SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells. Biochem. Pharm. 83 (11), pp. 1562-1571

Gutierrez, M., Suyama, T.L, Engene N., Wingerd, J.S., Matainaho, T., Gerwick, W.H. (2008) Apratoxin D, A Potent Cytotoxic Cyclodepsipeptide from Papua New Guinea Collections of Marine Cyanobacteria Lyngbya majuscula and Lyngbya sordidaJournal of Natural Products 71 (6), pp. 1099-1103

Book Chapters:

Wingerd, J. S., Vetter, I. and Lewis, R. J. (2012) Voltage-Gated Sodium Channels as Therapeutic Targets, in Therapeutic Targets: Modulation, Inhibition, and Activation (eds L. M. Botana and M. Loza), John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ, USA. doi: 10.1002/9781118185537.ch3

Grindberg, R. V., Shuman, C. F., Sorrels, C. M., Wingerd, J. and Gerwick, W. H. (2007) Neurotoxic Alkaloids from Cyanobacteria, in Modern Alkaloids: Structure, Isolation, Synthesis and Biology (eds E. Fattorusso and O. Taglialatela-Scafati), Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim, Germany. doi: 10.1002/9783527621071.ch6

Committees and Affiliations:

2016 – 2017         Organizing Committee – Flinders Reef Ecological Assessment (FREA)

2014 – 2016         UQ-IMB Early Career Research Executive Committee

2013 – 2015         Member : International Society of Toxinology

2010 – 2013       Member: The Australasian Society of Clinical and Experimental Pharmacologists and Toxicologists (ASCEPT)

2009 – 2012         Member: Australian Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology


2013                       Australian Peptide Student Travel Bursary (10th Australian Peptide Conference)

2011                       IMBcom BioBusiness Retreat – Best New Development Pitch

2011                       ASCEPT International Student Travel Award (11th SAWP Regional Meeting of Pharmacologists)

2009 – 2012         University of Queensland International Research Scholarship

2009 – 2012         Institution for Molecular Biosciences Postgraduate Award


Wingerd, J.S., Chin, Y., Mobli, M., Lewis, R.J., and Rash, L. (2015, Sept 25-30,) A novel tarantula venom with subtype-dependent pharmacology at voltage-gated sodium channels. Poster 26-19-15, 18th World Congress of the IST, Oxford, UK.

Wingerd, J.S., Chin, Y., Mobli, M., Lewis, R.J., and Rash, L. (2013, Sept 8-13) Towards Engineering Greater NaV-Selective Ligands. 10th Australian Peptide Conference, Penang, Malaysia.

Wingerd, J.S., Vetter, I. Rash, L. and Lewis, R. (2011, May 15-20) Exploring the NaV Activity of ICK Venom Peptides Using TRTX-Pre1a and δ-MVIA as Models. 4th Conference on Venoms to Drugs, Heron Island, QLD, Australia.

Wingerd, J.S. (2011, Mar 22-24) TRTX Pre1a: A Tale of Two Pharmacologies. Poster #P2J20-1, The 11th Southeast Asian Western Pacific Regional Meeting of Pharmacologists, Yokohama, Japan.

Yu H-H., Urrutia A., Wingerd J., Heim R., Panchenko V., Quan C., Williams A., Worley J., Gonzales J.E. and Cohen C.J. (2005, Nov 12-16). High-Throughput Functional Assays for CaV2 Channels with Millisecond Time Resolution. Poster #265.10, SFN 35th Annual Meeting, Washington, DC, USA.