Mark's major research interests centre around parasitic diseases and the adaptations of parasites to invade and live in a host as well as the host's responses to the parasite. The outputs from this research have included new drugs/parasiticides, vaccine development and diagnostic assays.
Most recently his work has included analysis of iron binding proteins in mites and gastrointestinal nematodes; studies of the production of autoantibodies against host proteins in pigs during mange infections; differential analysis of RNA expression during the first hours of establishment of blowfly larvae on sheep skin.
Mark completed his PhD at ANU in1980 on an Australian Wool Corporation scholarship studying parasitic diseases in sheep. He then took up a CSIRO post-doctoral fellowship studying immunity in animal models of human disease at Michigan State University. He returned to Australia a postdoctoral fellow in the School of Agriculture at La Trobe University in 1982, was appointed Lecturer in 1988, Senior Lecturer in 1990 then Reader/Associate Professor in 1996. He became Head of the Department of Agricultural Sciences in 1998 and Professor in 2009. He was also Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Science, Technology and Engineering from 2007 until leaving to take the position of Head of the School of Applied Science and Engineering at Monash University, Gippsland Campus in 2010. Mark has had a strong interest in the animal and veterinary sciences in both his teaching and research career. He coordinated the Gippsland Regional Plan priority to establish a new Centre for Sustainable Industries in the region and took an active role in planning for transition to a more energy efficient and carbon neutral economy in Gippsland. Since the amalgamation of the Gippsland Campus with the new Federation University and the formation of the Faculty of Science and Technology, he has led a process of review and renewal in the School of Applied and Biomedical Sciences. Early 2015 he took on the Executive Dean's role as a new challenge and worked to bring the Faculty together around co-operative teaching and active research programs.In 2018 he retired and took on an honorary position assisting with mentoring and supervision mainly with the Animal Health Ecology and Diagnostics research group.