Dr Nerida Cole graduated with a PhD in 1999 from the School of Optometry, University of New South Wales. Her research on the host cytokine response to Pseudomonas aeruginosa corneal infection received the Rakesh Kumar Prize for experimental pathology. Nerida has held postdoctoral positions at the University of New South Wales and the Brien Holden Vision Institute where her research has contributed to understanding the unique immunological responses of mucosal surfaces such as the cornea and the gut to bacterial infections and on the development of novel biomedical material surfaces for the prevention of microbial colonisation and the promotion of tissue integration. Nerida has also lectured in Pharmaceutics at the University of Sydney where she investigated the use of natural products such as propolis to modulate host immune responses and immunosuppression. More recently at the University of Technology she has used Immunohistochemical Mass Spectrometry to investigate degenerative neurological disorders.
Nerida has 60 peer reviewed papers and a number of patents and her research has been supported by grants from the Australian Research Council and the National Health and Medical Research Council as well as grants from Prevent Blindness America. Nerida has maintained a strong commitment to high quality research-led teaching throughout her career and has received funding for development of problem-based learning in the health sciences. In addition she has received funding from industry sources.