Professor Paul Mills

Professor

School of Veterinary Science
Faculty of Science
p.mills@uq.edu.au
+61 7 54601 852

Overview

Veterinary pharmacology and therapeutics, with special interest in transdermal drug delivery, pulmonary therapeutics and the control of inflammation. An additional interest includes wildlife ecology and therapeutics.

Paul Mills graduated from UQ School of Veterinary Science in 1987 and, after a period in clinical practice, completed a PhD investigating pharmacological control of inflammation in racing animals. He undertook a 3 year postdoctoral position at The Animal health Trust in the United Kingdom and established the Oxidative Stress research group. He was also the team veterinarian on a study of heat and humidity in horses towards the Atlanta Olympic Games. He returned to Australia and undertook positions as a NHMRC Senior Research Officer at the Princess Alexandria Hospital and as a Senior Government Veterinary Officer with Racing Queensland.

A/Prof Mills re-joined the School of Veterinary Science in 2001 and established the Pharmacology Research Unit to focus research into veterinary pharmacology. He was also a co-founder of Veterinary Marine Animal Research, Teaching and Investigation (Vet-MARTI; http://www.uq.edu.au/vetschool/vet-marti) in 2008. He has attracted over $2 million in research funding during this time and is the author on more than 100 peer-reviewed scientific publications. A/Prof Mills is a member (by examination) of the Australian College of Veterinary Scientists for Veterinary Pharmacology and an external reviewer for the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority. He currently teaches veterinary pharmacology and anatomy, receiving UQ and ALTC awards and funding for teaching innovations.

Research Interests

  • The Role of Surfactant in Pulmonary and Synovial Surfaces
    Researcher: Dr Paul Mills Collaborator: Professor Brian Hills (Mater Hospital) Synopsis: Surfactants have been shown to contribute to lubrication and normal function in human joint fluid. We have detected surfactant in equine tendon sheath fluid and synovial fluid. Degradation of surfactant may contribute to the aetiogenesis of joint and tendon disease while replacing surfactant may enhance recovery from injury. The role of surfactant in the lung has been long understood, but we are now also investigating the effects of pulmonary diseases on surfactant in parallel with current human research. Professor Hills has recently demonstrated that asthma in humans is related to degradation of surfactant and exposure of receptors lining the airways. This research may lead to novel therapeutic options for veterinary pulmonary diseases. Publications: Mills P.C., Hills Y.C. and Hills B.A. (2004) Surface-active Phospholipid (surfactant) in equine tendon and tendon sheath fluid). New Z Vet.J. (in press). Hills BA, Chen Y, Hills YC. (2003) Adsorption of surfactant to bronchial epithelium: possible role of receptor 'unmasking' in asthma. J Asthma. 40(4):445-50. Chang AB, Gibson PG, Masters IB, Dash P, Hills BA. (2003) The relationship between inflammation and dipalmitoyl phosphatidycholine in induced sputum of children with asthma. J Asthma. 40(1):63-70. Hills, B.A. Surface-active phospholipid: A Pandora's box of clinical applications. Part II. Barrier and Lubricating properties. Intern Med J 2002 May-Jun;32(5-6):242-51. Purbach B, Hills BA, Wroblewski BM. Surface-active phospholipid in total hip arthroplasty. Clin Orthop 2002 Mar;(396):115-8. Hills BA. Identity of the joint lubricant. J Rheumatol 2002 Jan;29(1):200-1. Vecchio P, Thomas R, Hills BA. Surfactant treatment for osteoarthritis. Rheumatology (Oxford) 1999 Oct;38(10):1020-1. Hills BA, Monds MK. Deficiency of lubricating surfactant lining the articular surfaces of replaced hips and knees. Br J Rheumatol 1998 Feb;37(2):143-7.
  • Transdermal Medication in Companion Animals
    Researcher: Dr Paul Mills Collaborators: Dr Sheree Cross, Therapeutic Research Unit, Princess Alexandra Hospital. Synopsis: Application of drugs to the skin for local (e.g. flea control) or systemic (e.g. fentanyl patches) is graining increasing popularity in veterinary medicine, in line with the research in human skin. The advantages of applying drugs to skin are an avoidance of hepatic "first-pass" effect, ease of administration (increasing owner compliance) and reversibility. A successful collaboration has been formed with the Therapeutics Research Unit, an internationally-acknowledged centre of human transdermal research. The research aims to clarify some of the issues regarding transdermal drug penetration in animals, including regional differences (does the site of application matter?), adaptation of human drugs and vehicles and the influences of skin damage or disease on drug kinetics. Publications: Mills P.C., Magnusson B.M. and Cross S.E. (2004) Regional differences in transdermal penetration of fentanyl from a commercially available patch (Durogesic�). J.A.V.M.A. (in press) Mills P.C., Magnusson B.M. and Cross S.E. (2004) The effects of vehicle and region of application on absorption of hydrocortisone through canine skin. Am.J.Vet.Res. (in press) Mills P.C., Magnusson B.M. and Cross S.E. (2004) Conclusive evidence of local direct deep tissue and synovial fluid penetration of a topically applied NSAID. J Rheumatol. (submitted) Mills P.C., Magnusson B.M. and Cross S.E. (2004) The effect of region of application on absorption through canine skin. Res.Vet.Sci. 76,37-41. Mills P.C., Magnusson B.M. and Cross S.E. (2003) The effect of solute lipophilicity on penetration through canine skin. Aust.Vet.J. 81(12), 752-755. Mills P.C., Magnusson B.M. and Cross S.E. (2003) The effect of solute lipophilicity on penetration through feline skin. J.Vet.Pharmacol.Therap. 26(4), 311-314. Mills P.C., Ng J.C., Seawright A.A. and Auer D.E. (1995) Kinetics, dose dependence, tachyphylaxis and cross-tachyphylaxis induced by endotoxin, zymosan-activated plasma and platelet activating factor in the horse. J.Vet.Pharmacol.Therap. 18 (3), 204-209. Mills P.C., Ng J.C., Seawright A.A. and Auer D.E. (1994) Kinetics of endotoxin, complement and platelet activating factor induced vascular permeability in greyhounds. J.Vet.Pharmacol.Therap. 17, 470-472. Mills P.C., Ng J.C., Seawright A.A. and Auer D.E. (1993) Vascular leakage induced by histamine, bradykinin, serotonin and prostaglandin E2 in greyhounds. Aust.Vet.J. 70(1), 21-24.
  • Pulmonary Function During Exercise and Disease
    Researcher: Dr Paul Mills Collaborator: Animal Health Trust, Newmarket, United Kingdom. Synopsis: Horses are a supreme athlete and have a pulmonary capacity that far exceeds humans. However, a combination of high pulmonary vascular pressures and weakened pulmonary capillary basement membranes predisposes to stress failure during strenuous exercise, commonly known as exercise-induced pulmonary haemorrhage (EIPH) or "bleeding". The investigations to date have focused on mechanisms regulating pulmonary vascular pressure (particularly nitric oxide) and free radical damage to basement membranes (oxidative stress). Publications: Mills P.C., Marlin D.J., Scott C.M., Smith N.C. (1999) Metabolic effects of NO synthase inhibition during exercise in the horse. Res.Vet.Sci. 66 (2), 135-138. Mills P.C., Auer D.E., Kramer H., Barry D. and Ng J.C. (1998) Effect of inflammation on indices of hepatic and renal function in the horse. Aust.Vet.J. 76 (3), 187-194. Mills P.C., Roberts C.A., Smith N.C. and Lekeux P. (1997) Oxidant stress and endothelin during exercise in the horse. Am.J.Resp.Crit.Care.Med. 154 (4), A862. Mills P.C. and Higgins A.J. (1997) Oxidant injury, nitric oxide and pulmonary vascular function: implications for the exercising horse. Vet.J.(formerly Br.Vet.J.) 153, 125-148. Mills P.C., Smith N.C., Harris R.C. and Harris P. (1997) Effect of allopurinol on indices of oxidative stress during intense exercise in the horse. Res.Vet.Sci. 62, 11-16. Mills P.C., Roberts C.A. and Smith N.C. (1997) Oxidant stress in the equine lung: response to oral prednisolone. Vet.Rec. 141 (20), 518-519. Mills P.C., Ng, J.C., Kramer H. and Auer D.E. (1997) Stress response to chronic inflammation in the horse. Equine Vet.J. 29 (6), 483-486. Mills P.C., Smith N.C., Casas I., Harris P., Harris R.C. and Marlin D.J. (1996) Effects of exercise intensity and environmental stress on indices of oxidative stress and iron homeostasis during exercise in the horse. Eur.J.Appl.Physiol. 74, 60-66. Mills P.C., Marlin D.J., Demoncheaux E., Scott C.M., Casas I., Smith N.C. and Higenbottam T (1996) Nitric oxide and exercise in the horse. J.Physiol. 495 (3), 863-874. Mills P.C., Marlin D.J. and Scott C.M. (1996) Pulmonary artery pressure during exercise in the horse after inhibition of nitric oxide synthase. Br.Vet.J. 152, 1-4. Mills P.C., Marlin D.J., Demoncheaux E. and Higenbottam T. (1996) Airway nitric oxide (NO) production: The effects of exercise and nebulised methoxamine in horses. Am.J.Resp.Crit.Care.Med. 153 (4), A796. Mills P.C., Roberts C.A. and Smith N.C. (1996) Effects of ozone and airway inflammation on glutathione status and iron homeostasis in the lungs of horses. Am.J.Vet.Res. 57, 1359-1363. Mills P.C., Marlin D.J., Scott C.M. and Smith N.C. (1996) Nitric oxide during exercise and pulmonary disease in the horse. Pferdeheilkunde, 12, 551-556. Mills P.C. and Marlin D.J. (1996) Plasma iron in elite horses at rest and after transport. Vet.Rec. 139 (9), 215-217.
  • Equine Thermoregulation and Anhidrosis
    Researcher: Dr Paul Mills Collaborator: Animal Health Trust, Newmarket, United Kingdom. Synopsis: Equine thermoregulation is essential during all forms of competition and may easily affect performance if mechanisms regulating body temperature and hydration are malfunctioning. A large multi-centre study was commissioned by the FEI towards understanding the effects on heat and humidity on equine performance towards the Atlanta Olympic Games. Some of the results from this study demonstrated a potential link between nitric oxide and sweating in the horse, which may be related to the condition of anhidrosis. Publications: Marlin D.J., Schroter R.C., S.L. White, Maykuth P., Mathesen G., Mills P.C., Waran N. and Harris P. (2001). Recovery from transport and acclimatisation of competition horses in a hot humid environment. Equine Vet.J. 33 (4), 371-379. Mills P.C., Marlin D.J., Scott C.M., Smith N.C. (1999). Metabolic effects of NO synthase inhibition during exercise in the horse. Res.Vet.Sci. 66 (2), 135-138. Marlin D.J., Scott C.M., Schroter R.C., Harris R.C., Harris P.A., Roberts C.A. and Mills P.C. (1999). Physiological responses of horses to a treadmill simulated speed and endurance test in high heat and humidity before and after humid heat acclimation. Equine Vet.J. 31 (1), 31-42. Marlin D.J., Scott C.M., Mills P.C., Louwes H. And Vaarten J. (1998). Rehydration following exercise: effects of administration of water versus an isotonic oral rehydration solution (ORS). Vet.J. 156, 41-49. Marlin D.J., Scott C.M., Mills P.C., Louwes H. And Vaarten J. (1998). Effects of administration of water versus an isotonic oral rehydration solution (ORS) at rest and changes during exercise and recovery. Vet.J. 155, 69-78. Mills P.C., Marlin D.J., Scott C.M., Smith N.C. (1997). Nitric oxide and thermoregulation during exercise in the horse. J.Appl.Physiol. 82 (4), 1035-1039. Mills P.C., Marlin D.J., Scott C.M., Smith N.C. (1997). Effects of nitric oxide inhibition on thermoregulation during exercise in the horse. Ann.N.Y.Acad.Sci. 813, 591-599. Marlin D.J., Scott C.M., Schroter R.C, Mills P.C, Roberts C.A., Harris R.C. and Harris P.A. (1996). Acclimation of horses to high temperature and humidity. Equine Athlete, 9(4), 1-11. Marlin DJ., Scott CM., Schroter RC., Mills PC., Harris RC., Harris PA., Orme CE., Roberts CA., Marr C., Dyson S. and Barrelet F. (1996). Physiological responses in non heat-acclimated horses performing treadmill exercise in cool (20oC/40%RH), hot/dry (30oC/40%RH) or hot/humid (30oC/80%RH) conditions. Equine Vet J Suppl 22, 70-84. Harris P.A., Marlin D.J., Mills P.C., Roberts C.A., Scott C.M., Harris R.C., Orme C.E., Schroter R.C., Marr C.E. and Barrelet F. (1995). Clinical observations made in non-heat acclimated horses performing treadmill exercise in cool (20oC/40%RH), hot/dry (30oC/40%RH) or hot/humid (30oC/80%RH) conditions. Equine Vet J. 27 (suppl. 20), 78-84. Harris P.A., Marlin D.J., Scott C.M., Harris R.C., Mills P.C., Michell A.R., Orme C.E., Roberts C.A.,Schroter R.C., Marr C.E. and Barrelet F. (1995). Electrolyte and total protein changes in non-heat acclimated horses performing treadmill exercise in cool (20oC/40%RH), hot/dry (30oC/40%RH) or hot/humid (30oC/80%RH) conditions. Equine Vet J. 27 (suppl. 20), 85-96.
  • Teaching and Learning in Veterinary Science Students
    Researcher: Dr Paul Mills Collaborator: Dr Peter Woodall and Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Sydney. Synopsis: Successful learning in students can be enhanced by innovative teaching practices that are aligned with student learning objectives. We are researching teaching to veterinary science students to enhance their deep (long term) learning and promote life skills (communication, problem solving and interaction) towards professional practice. A successful collaboration has been formed with the Faculty of Veterinary Science at the University of Sydney to benchmark teaching practices and mutually enhance teaching. Publications: Mills P.C. and Woodall P.F. (2004). A comparison of the responses of first and second year veterinary science students to group project work. Teach.High.Ed. (in press) Mills P.C. (2003). Group work in undergraduate veterinary science students. Assess. Eval.Higher Ed. 28 (5), 527-538.

Qualifications

  • Master of Philosophy, The University of Queensland
  • Graduate Certificate in Education, The University of Queensland
  • PhD, The University of Queensland
  • Bachelor of Veterinary Science (Honours), The University of Queensland

Publications

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Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

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Publications

Book

Journal Article

Conference Publication

Other Outputs

Grants (Administered at UQ)

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

Completed Supervision