James Harris


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Research activity per year

Personal profile


Dr James (Jim) Harris is an Immunologist/Cell Biologist with interests in inflammation, autophagy, macrophage and dendritic cell biology, autoimmunity and host-pathogen interactions. He is an adjunct Associate Professor in the School of Clinical Sciences at Monash Health and a Senior Research Scientist at CSIRO (Biomedical Manufacturing).

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 published >90 articles, with >20,000 citations (h index = 44). Jim currently serves as a Deputy Editor for Immunology & Cell Biology and as an Associate Editor for Frontiers in Immunology.


Research interests

Jim has an interest in innate immunity and more specifically the regulation of inflammation, particularly cytokine release by innate immune 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). 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, Immunol Cell Biol 2022).

Along with his interest in the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in the regulation of inflammation and immunity, Jim has developed a strong interest in immune cell responses to virus infection and is working with colleagues at RMIT and CSIRO to investigate how inflammation is regulated in infected macrophages. This work will include investigations of cells infected with Influenza A and SARS-CoV-2.

Community service

Scientists In Schools

Day of Immunology Organising committee (Melbourne) 2014


Monash teaching commitment

Department Convenor, MHTP, BMS3990 Research in Action

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

Education/Academic qualification

Immunology, PhD, Modulation of the rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) immune system by melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) and alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (-MSH), University of the West of England

… → 2000

Zoology, BSc (Hons), University of Nottingham

… → 1995

Research area keywords

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

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or