Department of Molecular Sciences

Department of Molecular Sciences

The Department of Molecular Sciences (MS) offers coursework programs and specialist subject majors at undergraduate, postgraduate and higher degree research level. A strong emphasis is placed upon practical experience, which takes place in some of the newest and best-equipped teaching and research laboratories in the country.

We adhere to Macquarie’s Learning and teaching strategic framework. For support in using our teaching tools such as iTeach and iLearn, see Macquarie’s teaching technologies and tools page.

Head of Department

Professor Alison Rodger

Alison received her BSc, PhD and DSc from Sydney University and her MA from Oxford. She was a Beatrice Dale Fellow at Newnham College Cambridge for three years from 1985 while also an Overseas Scholar of the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851. She then spent six years in Oxford as Unilever Fellow at St Catherine's College and Violette and Samuel Glasstone Fellow at St Hilda’s. At that time she set up the first Couette flow linear dichroism facilities in the UK. Her research has focused on understanding the structure and function of biomacromolecules including nucleic acids, proteins and carbohydrates.



Our research interests span the chemical and biomolecular sciences, but are unified by the common theme of working at the interface of biology and chemistry.

Our staff are active researchers in their own right and are recognised for their work at both the national and international level.

They conduct wide ranging research in the chemistry and biomolecular sciences fields working in collaboration with academic, industry and research partners across Australia and overseas.

Our research strengths include:

  • Analytical chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Biotechnology
  • Cellular biology
  • Medicinal chemistry
  • Microbiology
  • Molecular biology and genomics
  • Synthetic biology
  • Organic/inorganic synthesis
  • Proteomics and protein chemistry
  • Physical chemistry

Research centres

ARC Centre of Excellence for Nanoscale Biophotonics

The Centre for Nanoscale BioPhotonics links Australia’s key nanophotonics groups and builds on Global Collaborations with a focus on doing the science required to advance biology.

ARC Training Centre for Molecular Technology in the Food Industry

The Training Centre for Molecular Technology in the Food Industry provides world class postgraduate research training of the next generation of scientists who will shape the future of food production in Australia. Our established collaborations with a network of industrial partners will enable us to translate the research project outcomes into practical industry solutions.

Australian Proteome Analysis Facility

APAF was the birthplace of the term proteomics in 1995 and was established as the world’s first dedicated high throughput proteomics laboratory. APAF provides access and expertise for advanced mass spectrometry and protein chemistry analyses to academic and industry based life-science researchers.

Biosecurity Futures Research Centre

The Biosecurity Futures Research Centre is a landmark research co-investment of over $20 million has been established between Macquarie University and Horticulture Innovation Australia focusing on the management of Queensland fruit fly (Qfly) through Sterile Insect Technique (SIT). The focus is on developing an effective SIT program to curb the prevalence of fruit flies in Australia. The Qfly presents the most difficult and costly biosecurity challenge to market access for most Australian fruit producers, and threatens Australian crops valued at $9 billion.

Further research is supported by a $3.7 million Australian Research Council Industrial Transformation Training Centre (ITTC), "Centre for Fruit Fly Biosecurity Innovation", that aims to provide Australian horticulture industries new tools for environmentally and medically benign control of fruit fly pests.

University and faculty research centres

Biomolecular Frontiers Research Centre(BMFRC)

The Biomolecular Frontiers Research Centre brings together national and international researchers in the molecular and cellular analysis of living systems.

Macquarie University Marine Research Centre

The Macquarie University Marine Research Centre is a newly established cross-department University centre aimed at investigating important topics in marine research such as changes in marine ecosystems.


The Department of Molecular Sciences is supported by a number of facilities providing services or resources for use by members of the department, as well as other departments and commercial users.

MUCAB – Macquarie University Centre for Analytical Biotechnology

MUCAB provides access to bioanalytical instrumentation for interdisciplinary research in the chemical and biomolecular sciences within the Department.

Chemical Analysis Facility

The Chemical Analysis Facility offers a comprehensive package of analytical and technical services to universities and commercial entities. It hosts a wide range of high-quality modern equipment, operated and maintained by qualified personnel. All work is undertaken with speed, accuracy and a full guarantee of confidentiality.

Flow Cytometry Facility

The Flow Cytometry Facility maintains a range of cytometers and cell sorters that support high-throughput analyses, high speed cell sorting and single cell genomics. Many of the instruments are configured for marine research which means that they are ideal for analyses of ultra-small particles (e.g. viruses), and can detect a broad range of fluorescent signals simultaneously, including Hoechst, GFP, YFP, mCherry, PE and Chlorophyll.

NMR Facility

The Department has a Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Facility comprising of two spectrometers: an Avance DPX 400MHz and an Avance II 600MHz with cryoplatform.  Please click on the link above for more details.

Chemical Mass Spectrometry Facility

The Chemical Mass Spectrometry Facility is comprised of a Shimadzu LCMS-2010 Quadrupole mass spectrometer with ESI and APCI capability and a Shimadzu QP5000/GC-17A GC/MS.


Room 220, Level 2, Building F7B,  Macquarie University
North Ryde, Sydney, Australia

+61 (2) 9850 8275

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