Head of the School of Biomedical Sciences– University of Melbourne
Prof Mackay is an immunologist who obtained her PhD in 1994 at the Louis Pasteur University in Strasbourg, France. Over the years she has acquired an international reputation for her highly cited work on cytokines from the TNF superfamily, fundamental B cell biology, autoimmunity and cancer.
In 1994, Prof Mackay joined BiogenIdec Inc in Boston where she developed inhibitors of TNF ligands and characterised the factor BAFF.
In 2000, Prof Mackay joined the Garvan Institute in Sydney as a Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow with a National Health and Medical Research (NHMRC) program and project grant and was awarded one of five UK Medical Research Council (MRC) Senior Research Fellowships in 2004. She was director of the Autoimmunity Research Unit. Her laboratory first described the role of BAFF/BLyS as a key factor driving lupus in a number of highly cited articles. A BAFF inhibitor was approved by the FDA on March 9th 2011: a first new treatment for lupus in over 50 years.
In 2009, Prof Mackay became Chair of the Department of Immunology, Monash University. She is a National Health and Medical Research Fellow and has authored over 138 articles/reviews/book chapters, many in high impact factor journals. Her h-index is 56, with over 12,300 citations, an average of 103 citations per article. In 2012, Fabienne Mackay received the Thomson Reuters Australia citation and innovation award and in 2014 she received a trophy from the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Paris for outstanding contribution in education and research as an expatriate. Her laboratory continues to focus on autoimmunity and has recently initiated an important funded research program on restoring immunity in cancer. In 2015, Fabienne Mackay was elected board member of the International Cytokine and Interferon Society (ICIS).
In 2015, Prof Mackay has been appointed as the inaugural Head of the Melbourne School of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Melbourne.