I trained as a structural biologist and biochemist in Germany and the UK, and turned into a ubiquitinologist when I started my postdoc in London working on DUBs. In my first lab in Cambridge, UK, my team and I uncovered a surprising specificity in all components of the ubiquitin system, and we realised that rather being a simple degradation tag, ubiquitin forms a code with many outputs. My lab provided many of the current concepts and methods to study the ubiquitin code comprehensively.

In 2018, we moved to WEHI in Melbourne, Australia, to start the first ubiquitin-focussed research division down under. The Division comprises my lab of 12-15 researchers, as well as four other labs addressing basic and disease relevant aspects of ubiquitin signalling. It is amazing to see more than 50 ubiquitin geeks in one place, using any state-of-the-art technique from small molecule drug discovery to mouse models and human patient data, to further understand the ubiquitin code. The Ubiquitin Signalling Division is a most exciting, excellent and inspiring place!

Another unfulfilled ambition was to become more entrepreneurial and enable translation of the huge opportunities in the ubiquitin system, to help patients and establish an entrepreneurial culture. I am so excited to be doing just that with the team of Entact Bio!

Life is busy between the lab and our family — my wife and I have three kids under 11. To keep my stress levels in check, I go kayak fishing on the beautiful bays of Melbourne, as often as time and wind permits.