Professor Jake Baum
Head of School

Professor Jake Baum

  • Ph.D. in Infectious & Tropical Diseases. Co-evolution of Genetic Diversity in Malaria and Humans. London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (University of London), UK (1999-2002; awarded 31-08-2002).
  • M.Sc. Human Biology. University of Oxford, Magdalen College, UK (1997-1998).
  • B.A. Hons (M.A. Oxon). Biological Sciences. University of Oxford, St. Catherine’s College, UK (1993-1996).
Medicine & Health
School of Biomedical Sciences

I am a parasitologist, cell biologist and medical science innovator. Following Bachelors’ and Masters’ degrees at Oxford, and PhD in London (LSHTM, 2002) I moved to the Walter + Eliza Hall Institute in Melbourne, Australia to work on the molecular and cellular biology of the malaria parasite. I started my own independent lab at the WEHI in 2010 ( In 2013, I returned to the UK to Imperial College London, and was later appointed Professor of Cell Biology and Infectious Diseases (2017). In 2020 I helped found the Imperial College Institute of Infection, a new Institute charged with representing the entire interdisciplinary research portfolio of infection research across the University. In 2022, I was recruited back to Australia to take up a tenured Professorship and position as Head of School of Medical Sciences at UNSW, Sydney. My lab ( has had a diverse range of interests, across cell biology, drug discovery, novel diagnostics, and vaccine technologies, often working together with industry partnerships. I have mentored to completion 13 PhD students, 20+ postdocs and supported >100 researchers through my lab. 5 former lab members are now independent PIs, 1 is a Journal Editor and 2 have started their own spin-out companies. Throughout my career I’ve been passionate about supporting early career researchers advance their careers in science.

Career highlights include:

+61-2-9065 7439
Level 2 West Wallace Wurth Building (C27) UNSW, Kensington Campus
  • Journal articles | 2017
    Miguel-Blanco C; Molina I; Bardera AI; Díaz B; De Las Heras L; Lozano S; González C; Rodrigues J; Delves MJ; Ruecker A; Colmenarejo G; Viera S; Martínez-Martínez MS; Fernández E; Baum J; Sinden RE; Herreros E, 2017, 'Hundreds of dual-stage antimalarial molecules discovered by a functional gametocyte screen', Nature Communications, vol. 8,
    Journal articles | 2017
    Wong W; Bai XC; Sleebs BE; Triglia T; Brown A; Thompson JK; Jackson KE; Hanssen E; Marapana DS; Fernandez IS; Ralph SA; Cowman AF; Scheres SHW; Baum J, 2017, 'Mefloquine targets the Plasmodium falciparum 80S ribosome to inhibit protein synthesis', Nature Microbiology, vol. 2,
    Journal articles | 2016
    Zuccala ES; Satchwell TJ; Angrisano F; Tan YH; Wilson MC; Heesom KJ; Baum J, 2016, 'Quantitative phospho-proteomics reveals the Plasmodium merozoite triggers pre-invasion host kinase modification of the red cell cytoskeleton', Scientific Reports, vol. 6,
  • Preprints | 2021
    Yahiya S; Saunders CN; Straschil U; Fischer OJ; Rueda-Zubiaurre A; Haase S; Vizcay-Barrena G; Jordan S; Hassan S; Delves MJ; Tate EW; Barnard A; Fuchter MJ; Baum J, 2021, Plasmodium falciparumprotein Pfs16 is a target for transmission-blocking antimalarial drug development,

Current funding for the Baum lab comes from:

  • The Wellcome Trust (UK)
  • The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (US)
  • NIH (US)
  • The RoseTrees Trust (UK)

  • 2020 Imperial College London President's Awards for Excellence in Societal Engagement.
  • 2017, 2018 and 2019 Nomination Best Teaching Award. 2018 Nominated and Short-listed for Best Feedback Award by Imperial College Union Student Academic Choice Awards.
  • 2013 Merck Millipore Research Medal from the Australian Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB).
  • 2011 Walter + Eliza Hall Institute Burnet Prize.
  • 2009 Victorian/Tasmania Young Tall Poppy Science Award Winner.
  • 2007 ARC/NHMRC Australian Parasitological Society Early Career Researcher award

  • Development of novel, multi-epitope malaria vaccines
  • Dissection-independent isolation of malaria parasite sporozoites
  • Cell free protein translation by in vitro translation (IVT) using Plasmodium cell lysate
  • Digital point-of-care diagnostics for malaria and other infectious diseases
  • High throughput drug screening for antimalarials
  • Cell biology - with a core focus on malaria parasite cell motility and general cell biology