Benjamin Liffner

Benjamin Liffner

Higher Degree by Research Candidate

School of Biological Sciences

Faculty of Sciences


My personal passion lies in understanding and overcoming issues that principally affect the world’s most poverty-stricken and disadvantaged populations. A vital factor that inhibits development of impoverished regions is the disproportionate prevalence of infectious diseases, particularly those caused by parasites. Currently my research focuses on malaria, a deadly and financially detrimental disease, which results in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of children each year and costs billions of dollars for the countries that are least able to afford it. More specifically, my PhD project concerns the molecular dynamics of red blood cell invasion by the deadliest human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. We aim to further understand this vital process in the parasite lifecycle, with the goals of identifying novel antimalarial targets and informing future vaccine design.

My personal passion lies in understanding and overcoming issues that principally affect the world’s most poverty-stricken and disadvantaged populations. A vital factor that inhibits development of impoverished regions is the disproportionate prevalence of infectious diseases, particularly those caused by parasites. Currently my research focuses on malaria, a deadly and financially detrimental disease, which results in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of children each year and costs billions of dollars for the countries that are least able to afford it. More specifically, my PhD project concerns the molecular dynamics of red blood cell invasion by the deadliest human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. We aim to further understand this vital process in the parasite lifecycle, with the goals of identifying novel antimalarial targets and informing future vaccine design.

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  • Journals

    Year Citation
    2019 Wichers, J., Scholz, J., Strauss, J., Witt, S., Lill, A., Ehnold, L., . . . Bachmann, A. (2019). Dissecting the gene expression, localization, membrane topology, and function of the plasmodium falciparum STEVOR protein family. mBio, 10(4), e01500-1-e01500-19.
    DOI WoS1
    2019 Liffner, B., Frölich, S., Heinemann, G., Liu, B., Dixon, M., Gilberger, T. -W., & Wilson, D. (2019). PfCERLI1, a conserved rhoptry associated protein essential for invasion by Plasmodium falciparum merozoites.
    DOI

2018 – Present  Commonwealth Scholarship, awarded by the Australian Government to support research in South Australian priority industries ($14,500)

2017 - Present Research Training Program Stipend, awarded by the Australian Government (Department of Education & Training)

2019 Global Learning Travel Grant, awarded by the University of Adelaide ($500)

2018 – 2019 Hans Jürgen & Marianne Ohff Research Grant, awarded by The  University of Adelaide for German-Australian research collaboration. ($1892)

2018-2019  Australia-Germany Joint Research Co-operation Scheme, Co-author ($10,500)

2018 Global Learning Travel Grant, awarded by the University of Adelaide ($500)

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  • Board Memberships

    Date Role Board name Institution name Country
    2019 - ongoing Representative SA/NT Branch Australian Society for Microbiology Australia
  • Committee Memberships

    Date Role Committee Institution Country
    2019 - ongoing Representative Faculty Board The University of Adelaide Australia

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External Profiles