Dr Richard Clark

Senior Research Fellow

School of Biomedical Sciences
Faculty of Medicine

Affiliate ARC Future Fellow

Institute for Molecular Bioscience
richard.clark@uq.edu.au
+61 7 336 51527

Overview

Dr Clark is a Senior Research Fellow at the School of Biomedical Sciences where he is Head of the Peptide Chemical Biology Lab. He completed his PhD in 2000 at the UQ Chemistry Department studying marine natural products chemistry and chemical ecology with Prof. Mary Garson. He then shifted his research focus towards peptide chemistry, structural biology and drug design when he was recruited to the lab of Prof. David Craik at the IMB. His current research focus is the development of technologies to stabilise peptide therapeutics and the elucidation of the structure/function activity of bioactive peptides.

Qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy, The University of Queensland
  • Bachelor of Science (Hons), University of Tasmania

Publications

View all Publications

Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

View all Supervision

Available Projects

  • Conotoxins, with their exquisite specificity and potency have recently created much excitement as drug leads for the treatment of chronic pain. For example, the conotoxin MVIIA (also known as Ziconotide or Prialt) has been approved for use in the U.S. and Europe for the treatment of pain and several other conotoxins have entered clinical trials. In addition, a number of conotoxins have played a critical role in dissecting the molecular mechanisms of ion channel and transporter functions in the nervous system.

    There are projects available in the design of novel conotoxins that target specific receptors involved in pain.

  • Hepcidin is the principal iron-regulatory hormone and the key mediator of iron overload (haemochromatosis) and anaemia of inflammation. This research project involves two development streams of peptide design, synthesis and structure/function analysis. The first stream will focus on the specific residues important for biological activity of hepcidin and the mutation of these residues to improve activity. The second stream will involve the development of stabilised analogues of native hepcidin. The two streams will coalesce during the final round of development to produce a series of novel cyclic hepcidin drug leads.

View all Available Projects

Publications

Book Chapter

  • Craik, David J., Smith, Philippa A. and Clark, Richard James (2010). NMR-based screening and drug discovery. In Donald J. Abraham, David P. Rotella and Alfred Burger (Ed.), Burger's medicinal chemistry, drug discovery, and development 7th ed. (pp. 359-437) Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley. doi:10.1002/0471266949

  • Craik, D. J. and Clark, R. J. (2008). Structure-based Drug Design and NMR-based screening. In R. A. Meyers (Ed.), Pharmacology from drug development to gene therapy (pp. 225-313) Weinheim: Wiley-VCH Verlag GMBH & Co.

  • Craik, D. J. and Clark, R. J. (2005). Structure-based drug design and NMR-based screening. In Robert A Meyers (Ed.), Encyclopdeia of Molecular Cell Biology and Molecular Medicine 2nd ed. (pp. 517-605) Germany: Wiley-VCH.

  • Craik, D. J. and Clark, R. J. (2003). NMR and Drug Discovery. In Donald J Abraham (Ed.), Burger's Medicinal Chemistry and Drug Discovery, Vol 1, Drug Discovery 6th ed. (pp. 507-582) USA: John Wiley & Sons.

Journal Article

Conference Publication

  • Koehbach, Johannes and Clark, Richard J. (2015). Exploring the chemistry and pharmacological potential of bioactive peptides from insects. In: 14th International Congress on Amino Acids, Peptides and Proteins, Vienna, Austria, (1653-1653). August 3–7, 2015. doi:10.1007/s00726-015-2016-z

  • Clark, R. J., Carstens, B. B., Berecki, G., Callaghan, B., Adams, D. J. and Craik, D. J. (2013). A New Target for the Alpha-Conotoxins: The GABAB Receptor. In: Biopolymers. 23rd American Peptide Symposium, Waikoloa Hi, (247-247). Jun 22-27, 2013.

  • Malik, U., Silva, O. N., Fensterseifer, I. C. M., Clark, R. J., Walsh, P. S., Sunderland, P. E., Franco, O. L., Daly, N. L. and Craik, D. J. (2013). Peptides - Next Generation Antibiotics. In: Biopolymers. 23rd American Peptide Symposium, Waikoloa Hi, (282-282). Jun 22-27, 2013.

  • Carstens, B. B., Berecki, G., Rosengren, K. J., Craik, D. J., Adams, D. J. and Clark, R. J. (2013). Pn1.2, a New Alpha-conotoxin Targeting the GABAB Receptor. In: Biopolymers. 23rd American Peptide Symposium, Waikoloa Hi, (247-247). Jun 22-27, 2013.

  • Adams, D. J., Berecki, G., Clark, R. and Craik, D. J. (2013). Development of analgesic alpha-conotoxins for treatment of chronic pain. In: Special Issue: ACABS 2013: The Fourth Meeting of The Australia Chinese Association for Biomedical Sciences Inc. 4th Meeting of the Australia Chinese Association for Biomedical Sciences Inc (ACABS), Hangzhou Peoples R China, (4-4). 10-13 October 2013. doi:10.1111/1440-1681.12170

  • Kompella, Shiva N., Hung, Andrew, Clark, Richard J. and Adams, David J. (2013). alpha-Conotoxin Regiia Targeting Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors: Mutagenesis Studies Improving Selectivity and Potency. In: Abstracts of the 57th Annual Meeting of the Biophysical Society. 57th Annual Meeting of the Biophysical Society, Philadelphia Pa, (634A-634A). 02-06 February 2013. doi:10.1016/j.bpj.2012.11.3505

  • Chan, L. A., Gunasekera, S., Henriques, S. T., Worth, N. F., Le, S., Clark, R. J., Campbell, J. H., Craik, D. J. and Daly, N. L. (2012). Engineering pro-angiogenic peptides using stable disulfide-rich scaffolds. In: 32nd European Peptide Symposium, Athens, Greece, (S40-S40). 2-7 September 2012. doi:10.1002/psc.2448

  • Rosengren, K. J., Haugaard-Kedstroem, L. M., Jones, M., Clark, R. J. and Bathgate, R. A. D. (2012). Novel single-chain ligands for the relaxin-3 receptor RXFP3. In: Proceedings of the 32nd European Peptide Symposium. 32nd European Peptide Symposium "Peptides 2012", Athens, Greece, (S48-S48). 02-07 September 2012. doi:10.1002/psc.2448

  • Clark, R. J., Tan, C., Preza, G. C., Nemeth, E., Ganz, T. and Craik, D. J. (2012). Understanding the structure/activity relationships of the iron regulatory peptide hepcidin. In: Oral Abstracts from the Journal of Peptide Science. 32nd European Peptide Symposium "Peptides 2012", Athens, Greece, (S52-S52). 2-7 September 2012. doi:10.1002/psc.2448

  • Adams, D. J., Grishin, A. A., Hung, A., Clark, R. J., Akondi, K., Alewood, P. F. and Craik, D. J. (2011). Scanning mutagenesis of alpha-conotoxin AuIB reveals a critical residue for activity at the alpha-3-beta-4 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. In: Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors as Therapeutic Targets: Emerging Frontiers in Basic Research and Clinical Science. Satellite to the 2011 Meeting of the Society for Neuroscience. nAChR2011: Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors as Therapeutic Targets: Emerging Frontiers in Basic Research & Clinical Science, Washington, DC, U.S.A., (1028-1028). 9-11 November 2011. doi:10.1016/j.bcp.2011.07.017

  • Burman, Robert, Svedlund, Erika, Felth, Jenny, Hassan, Saadia, Hermann, Anders, Clark, Richard James, Craik, David J., Bohlin, Lars, Claeson, Per, Goransson, Ulf and Gullbo, Joachim (2010). Evaluation of toxicity and antitumor activity of cycloviolacin O2 in mice. In: Proceedings of the 1st International Conference on Circular Proteins. 1st International Conference on Circular Proteins, Heron Island, Qld, Australia, (626-634). 18-21 October, 2009. doi:10.1002/bip.21408

  • Colgrave, Michelle, Korsinczky, Michael Laszlo Jonas, Clark, Richard James, Foley, Fiona and Craik, David J. (2010). Sunflower trypsin inhibitor-1, proteolytic studies on a trypsin inhibitor peptide and its analogs. In: Proceedings of the 1st International Conference on Circular Proteins. 1st International Conference on Circular Proteins, Heron Island, Qld, Australia, (665-672). 18-21 October 2009. doi:10.1002/bip.21415

  • Clark, J., Jensen, J., Nevin, S., Brid, C., Adams, D. and Craik, D. (2010). The engineering of an orally active conotoxin for the treatment of neuropathic pain. In: EPS 2010: The 31st European Peptide Symposium, Copenhagen, Denmark, (45-45). 5-9 September 2010. doi:10.1002/psc.1302

  • Halai, R., Clark, R., Nevin, S., Adams, D. and Craik, D. (2009). Mutational atudies on alpha-conotoxin VCL1. In: Abstracts of the 21st American Peptide Symposium. 21st American Peptide Symposium, Bloomington, Indiana, USA, (315-315). 7-12 June 2009. doi:10.1002/bip.21223

  • Preza, G, Fernandes, A, Clark, RJ, Craik, DJ, Ganz, T and Nemeth, E (2008). Structural Aspects of Hepcidin-Ferroportin Binding. In: Blood. 50th Annual Meeting of the American- Society-of-Hematology, San Francisco Ca, (50-50). Dec 06-09, 2008.

  • Aboye, Teshome, Clark, Richard, Craik, David J. and Goransson, Ulf (2008). Synthesis and folding of the circular cystine knotted cyclotide cycloviolacin O2. In: Poster presentation abstracts 30th European Peptide Symposium (30EPS). 30th European Peptide Symposium (30EPS), Helsinki, Finland, (144-144). 31 August – 5 September 2008. doi:10.1002/psc.1090

  • Aboye, Teshome, Clark, Richard, Craik, David J. and Goransson, Ulf (2008). Synthesis and folding of the circular cystine knotted cyclotide cycloviolacin O2. In: 7th Joint Meeting of the Association Francophone pour l'Enselgnement et la Recherche en Pharmacognosie/American Society of Pharmacognosy/Society for Medicinal Plant Research/Phytochem Society of Europe/Societa Italiana di Fitochimica. 7th Joint Meeting of GA, AFERP, ASP, PSE & SIF, Athens, Greece, (1158-1158). 3-8 August 2008.

  • Clark, Richard, Tan, Chia Chia, Nemeth, Elizabeta, Ganz, Thomas and Craik, David (2008). Understanding the structure/activity relationships of hepcidin. In: Poster presentation abstracts 30th European Peptide Symposium (30EPS). 30th European Peptide Symposium (30EPS), Helsinki, Finland, (98-98). 31 August – 5 September 2008. doi:10.1002/psc.1090

  • Gruber, G. W., Cemazar, M., Clark, R., Horibe, T., Renda, R., Anderson, M. A. and Craik, D. J. (2007). Enzyme mechanism and function of a novel plant protein disulfide isomerase involved in the oxidative folding of cystine knot defence peptides. In: 20th American-Peptide-Society Symposium, Montréal, Canada, (541-541). 26-30 Jun 2007. doi:10.1002/bip.20783

  • Rosengren, KJ, Jen, FEC, Clark, RJ, Goransson, U, Daly, NL and Craik, DJ (2005). A novel threaded ring structure for the antimicrobial peptide microcin J25. In: Martin Flegel, Peptides 2004: Bridges between Disciplines ; Proceedings of the Third International and Twenty-Eighth European Peptide Symposium. Peptides 2004: 3rd International Peptide Symposium / 28th European Peptide Symposium, Prague, Czech Republic, (174-175). 5 - 10 September 2004.

  • Craik, D. J., Rosengren, K. J., Clark, R. J., Daly, N. L. and Goransson, U. (2004). A novel threaded ring structure for the antimicrobial peptide microcin J25. In: Oral Presentation Abstracts P91–P118. 3rd International and 28th European Peptide Symposium, Prague, Czech Republic, (116-116). 5–10 September 2004. doi:10.1002/psc.617

  • Plan, MR, Goransson, U, Rosengren, KJ, Clark, RJ, Daly, NL, Evert, P, Chen, C, Cagauan, AG and Craik, DJ (2004). Cyclotides: Novel Peptidic Pesticides for Plant Protection. In: Journal of Peptide Science. , , (278-278). .

  • Clark, RJ, Dempster, L, Daly, NL, Rosengren, KJ and Craik, DJ (2004). Design, Synthesis and Structural Studies of Cyclic Alpha-Conotoxins. In: Journal of Peptide Science. , , (269-269). .

  • Green, K., Russell, B. D., Clark, R., Jones, M. K., Skilleter, G. A., Garson, M. J. and Degnan, B. M. (2002). Sponge allelochemical induces ascidian development but inhibits metamorphosis. In: 23rd International Conference on Natural Products. 23rd International Conference on Natural Products, Italy, ((Abstract)). July, 2002.

  • Green, K., Russell, B. D., Clark, R. J., Jones, M. K., Skilleter, G. A., Garson, M. J. and Degnan, B. M. (2001). Sponge alleleochemical induces ascidian settlement but inhibits metamorphosis. In: International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry. 3rd IUPAC International Conference on Biodiversity, Turkey, (SL-10B-SL-10B). 2001.

  • Clark, R. J., Degnan, B. M., Garson, M. J., Green, K. M., Jones, M. K., Russell, B. D. and Skilleter, G. A. (2001). Sponge allelochemical induces ascidian development but inhibits metamorphosis. In: Abstracts of the World Chemistry Congress 2001. The World Chemistry Congress 2001, Brisbane, Australia, (82-82). 106 July 2001.

  • Garson, M. J., Blunt, J. W., Clark, R., Degnan, B. M., Green, K. M., Munro, M. H., Simpson, J. and Skilleter, G. A. (2000). Marine ecology: The natural approach to finding bioactives. In: Australasian Biotechnological Association Conference. Australasian Biotechnological Association Conference, Brisbane, (). 2-6 July, 2000.

  • Green, K. M., Russell, B. D., Clark, R., Jones, M. K., Skilleter, G. A., Garson, M. J. and Degnan, B. M. (2000). Sponge allelochemical induces ascidian development but inhibits metamorphosis. In: Proceedings of the Pacifichem 2000. Pacifichem 2000, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA, (). 14-19 December, 2000.

  • Garson, M. J., Clark, R., Webb, R. I., Field, K. L. and Charan, R. D. (1999). Ecological role of cytotoxic alkaloids: Haliclona n.sp., an unusual sponge/dinoflagellate association. In: Memoirs of the Queensland Museum. 5th International Sponge Conference, Brisbane, (205-213). 27 June - 4 July 1999.

Other Outputs

Grants (Administered at UQ)

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

Completed Supervision

Possible Research Projects

Note for students: The possible research projects listed on this page may not be comprehensive or up to date. Always feel free to contact the staff for more information, and also with your own research ideas.

  • Conotoxins, with their exquisite specificity and potency have recently created much excitement as drug leads for the treatment of chronic pain. For example, the conotoxin MVIIA (also known as Ziconotide or Prialt) has been approved for use in the U.S. and Europe for the treatment of pain and several other conotoxins have entered clinical trials. In addition, a number of conotoxins have played a critical role in dissecting the molecular mechanisms of ion channel and transporter functions in the nervous system.

    There are projects available in the design of novel conotoxins that target specific receptors involved in pain.

  • Hepcidin is the principal iron-regulatory hormone and the key mediator of iron overload (haemochromatosis) and anaemia of inflammation. This research project involves two development streams of peptide design, synthesis and structure/function analysis. The first stream will focus on the specific residues important for biological activity of hepcidin and the mutation of these residues to improve activity. The second stream will involve the development of stabilised analogues of native hepcidin. The two streams will coalesce during the final round of development to produce a series of novel cyclic hepcidin drug leads.