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Personal profile


Dr James (Jim) Harris is an Immunologist/Cell Biologist running independent research into inflammation, autophagy, endocytosis, macrophage and dendritic cell biology, autoimmunity and host-pathogen interactions. He is Head of Laboratory Research for the Rheumatology Group, run by Professor Eric Morand and is focused on innate immune responses and inflammation in autoimmune diseases, including systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE, lupus), systemic sclerosis (SSc, scleroderma) and arthritis. He is also investigating the role of macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) in inflammation and cell biology.

Dr Harris received a BSc (Hons) in Zoology from the University of Nottingham, UK and his PhD in Immunology (in fish) from the University of the West of England, UK. He has worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for Animal Health, UK (on cows), Oxford University, UK (on human cells), University of New Mexico, USA (on mouse cells and bacteria) and Trinity College Dublin (on all sorts). He was also Programme Manager for the Immunology Research Centre (IRC) in Ireland, a €10 million Science Foundation Ireland-funded cluster of immunology research groups. He moved to Australia and Monash in 2013.

He has publised >70 articles, with >11,000 citations (h index = 34). Jim currently serves as a Deputy Editor for Immunology & Cell Biology, an Academic Editor for PeerJ, A Review Editor for Frontiers in Immunology and as an Editorial Board Member for Arthritis Research & Therapy.


Research interests

Jim has an interest in innate immunity and more specifically the regulation of inflammation, particularly cytokine release by macrophages and dendritic cells. Recently, he has focused largely on the regulation of IL-1 family cytokines and macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF), demonstrating a specific role for MIF in the activation of the NLRP3 inflammasome (Nat Commun 2018). Directly related to this, he also works on the roles of autophagy in immune cells, particularly myeloid cells. In this context, he has published studies on the role of cytokines in regulating autophagy (Immunity 2007) and on the regulation of cytokine release by autophagy (J Biol Chem 2011, J Immunol 2012, Autophagy 2016).

Along with his interest in thecellular and molecular mechanisms involved in the regulation of inflammation and immunity, the Rheumatology Group has a strong interest in translational and biomarker studies in diseases, including SLE, arthritis and scleroderma.

Community service

Scientists In Schools

Day of Immunology Organising committee (Melbourne) 2014


Monash teaching commitment

Department Convenor, MHTP, BMS3990 Research in Action

Education/Academic qualification

Immunology, PhD, University of the West of England

… → 2000

Zoology, BSc (Hons), University of Nottingham (UK)

… → 1995

Research area keywords

  • Arthritis
  • Autophagy
  • Dendritic Cell
  • Immunity
  • Inflammation
  • Lupus
  • Macrophage
  • tuberculosis
  • innate immunity
  • scleroderma
  • MIF
  • Inflammasomes
  • IL-1

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 2014 2019

Research Output 1998 2020

Assays for Measuring the Role of MIF in NLRP3 Inflammasome Activation

Pinar, A. A. & Harris, J., 2020, Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor: Methods and Protocols. Harris, J. & Morand, E. F. (eds.). New York, NY: Humana Press, Vol. 2080. p. 159-172 14 p. (Methods in Molecular Biology).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Otherpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Analysis of serum interleukin(IL)-1α, IL-1β and IL-18 in patients with systemic sclerosis

Lin, E., Vincent, F. B., Sahhar, J., Ngian, G-S., Kandane-Rathnayake, R., Mende, R., Morand, E. F., Lang, T. & Harris, J., 1 Jan 2019, In : Clinical and Translational Immunology. 8, 4, 11 p., e1045.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Open Access
3 Citations (Scopus)

Effect of storage duration on cytokine stability in human serum and plasma

Vincent, F. B., Nim, H. T., Lee, J. P. W., Morand, E. F. & Harris, J., Jan 2019, In : Cytokine. 113, p. 453-457 5 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)

Rediscovering MIF: New Tricks for an Old Cytokine

Harris, J., VanPatten, S., Deen, N. S., Al-Abed, Y. & Morand, E. F., 1 May 2019, In : Trends in Immunology. 40, 5, p. 447-462 16 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review


Paper selected for the Best of Immunology & Cell Biology (ICB)/ Clinical and Translational Immunology (CTI) Workshop at the 2019 Australian & New Zealand Society for Immunology (ASI) Annual Scientific Meeting

Fabien Vincent (Recipient), James Harris (Recipient), Eric Morand (Recipient), Joanne Sahhar (Recipient), Gene Ngian (Recipient), Rangi Kandane-Rathnayake (Recipient), Tali Lang (Recipient), Emily Lin (Recipient) & Rachel Mende (Recipient), 11 Dec 2019

Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)

Activities 2015 2019

  • 7 Editorial responsibility
  • 1 Contribution to conference

Immunology and Cell Biology (Journal)

James Harris (Associate editor)

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial responsibility

ComBio 2018

James Harris (Session chair)

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesContribution to conference

PeerJ (Journal)

James Harris (Associate editor)
2017 → …

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial responsibility

Arthritis Research and Therapy (Journal)

James Harris (Editorial board member)
2016 → …

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial responsibility

Immunology and Cell Biology (Journal)

James Harris (Associate editor)
2016 → …

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial responsibility