Nathan Bartlett is Associate Professor and head of the Viral Immunology and Respiratory Disease group and is based at the Hunter Medical Research Institute. He also retains an honorary academic appointment at Imperial College London, UK to continue collaborative research.
Following the award of PhD, Dr Bartlett undertook a 5 year Postdoctoral research position, first at the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford, then in the Department of Virology, Imperial College London. Dr Bartlett then undertook a second Postdoctoral position in the Department of Respiratory Medicine within the National Heart and Lung Institute (NHLI), also at Imperial.
After joining the NHLI, Dr Bartlett continued to build on his virology training leading to Bartlett et al, Nature Medicine 2008, the world's first mouse rhinovirus infection model. He has investigated the interaction of respiratory viral infection with type-2 immunity to uncover pathogenic mechanisms in asthma exacerbations. He was a co-applicant on several successful project and program grants and since his Lecturer appointment at Imperial in 2011 was successful as the Lead Investigator in achieving an MRC project grant to study the role of IL-25 in asthma exacerbations, the research from which was published as the featured cover story in Science Translational Medicine (October 2014). Dr Bartlett has contributed to several scholarly books including the Rhinovirus chapter for the Encyclopaedia of Virology (Elsevier) and ,edited Rhinovirus Infections: Rethinking Impact on Human Health and Disease (Elsevier). Dr Bartlett is considered a world expert on in vivo and human airway epithelial models of rhinovirus infection and consults for a number companies that are bringing novel therapies for respiratory infection and inflammatory airways diseases to the clinic.He is also an Associate Editor for the American Journal of Physiology - Lung, Cellular and Molecular Physiology (AJP-LUNG) and a member of the European Respiratory Society College of Experts.
In 2015 Dr Bartlett accepted an academic appointment at the University of Newcastle where he has received funding from HMRI, Asthma Australia, NH&MRC and multiple Industry Partners and associated Government grants. He work has led to the publishing of multiple patents related to treatments currently in development for respiratory virus infections and exacerbations of chronic respiratory diseases.
He is now exploring novel therapies and treatments to fight COVID-19, a novel coronavirus which was declared a pandemic in March 2020. His team is exploring a range of anti-viral options for this virus, partnering with other researchers to explore different methods to fight the virus. For example Dr Bartlett is working with Professor Hubert Hondermarck to assess the safety and efficacy of a range of cancer drugs which have the potential to be repurposed.
Dr Bartlett continues to work with Ena Therapeutics (MRCF-funded company) who have developed an innate immune stimulant that protects the lungs against respiratory virus infections. Boosting lung innate immunity bridges the gap between vaccine mediated long term protection and anti-viral drug to treat active infection. He is now using coronavirus infections models to determine the efficacy of this approach.
He is also helping local industries that are focusing their business to produce disinfectants, sanitizers and virus inactivating materials that will become part of everyday life as we adapt to coexist with new respiratory viruses such as SARS-CoV-2.