Staff profile: Narelle Keating

Staff profile: Narelle Keating

Illuminate newsletter index page, June 2018
June 2018

Narelle Keating
PhD student Narelle Keating loves coffee, bad puns and
is focussed on making the immune system more powerful
against attack.

Narelle Keating

PhD student

Describe your job…I study the basic mechanisms of how certain signalling molecules limit our immune cells’ ability to kill cancer cells. If we can understand how to manipulate these signalling molecules to make our immune system more powerful, it could help us improve current cancer and disease therapies.

Why do you take pleasure in what you do? There’s a nerdy kind of kick in learning about how the human body works from experiments that you designed yourself, rather than from what’s already published in a text book.

What is your favourite thing about the Institute’s culture? I really love that our atmosphere fosters talk between staff and students from all across the Institute. The ability to talk about our science is maybe the most valuable asset we have apart from the ability to do the actual science in the first place.

What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you? I find cataloguing my samples with those sticker labels quite therapeutic. But, people would probably be more surprised that I think that’s a surprising fact about myself.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself? I feel like I am still the younger version of myself…ask me again in 10 years or so.

Which movie star would play you in a movie adaptation of your life? Matthew Perry, who plays Chandler Bing on the TV show Friends. He loves coffee, makes really bad puns and none of his friends really understands what he does for work.

What do you want to be remembered for? I think it’d be pretty neat to be remembered as the girl who worked hard to make the lives of those around her easier and happier, whether that be directly related to my work as a scientist or otherwise.