Christine Wright laboratory

Research Overview

The Cardiovascular Therapeutics Unit has research interests across diverse areas of cardiovascular and autonomic pharmacology. Current projects include endothelin pharmacology in the setting of pulmonary hypertension, the role of pannexin-1 channels and ATP in vascular contraction, snake venom toxinology, and vascular reactivity in hypertension and ageing. We have also developed a novel analytical approach to determining the affinity of prejunctional inhibitors of autonomic transmission.

The Cardiovascular Therapeutics Unit has extensive experience in preclinical in vitro and in vivo studies to assist Big Pharma or Biotech companies in the selection of lead drug candidates or in focusing medicinal chemistry strategies to minimise the risks of unexpected cardiac toxicity or cardiovascular sequelae.

Details may be found on the individual research project pages.


Professor James A. Angus, AO, BSc Hons, PhD, FAA, FAHMS (Hon)
Mr Mark Ross-Smith, BSc Hons, Senior Research Assistant
Ms Linda Cornthwaite-Duncan, Technical Officer
Mr Ashenafi Betrie, BSc, MSc (Ethiopia), PhD candidate
Ms Amna Mazeh, MSc Pharm (Sweden), PhD candidate
Ms Nhi Thuc Vuong, BSc, M Biomed Sci candidate

photo of Wright Lab personnel 2017


Dr Scott Ayton & Professor Ashley Bush, Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health, University of Melbourne
Dr Makhala Khammy, Ion Channel Group, Vascular Physiology, Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Copenhagen & Aarhus University, Denmark
Dr David Williams & Dr Timothy Jackson, Australian Venom Research Unit, Pharmacology and Therapeutics, University of Melbourne

Research Publications

  • Angus JA, Betrie AH, Wright CE. Pannexin-1 channels do not regulate α1-adrenoceptor-mediated vasoconstriction in resistance arteries. Eur J Pharmacol 2015; 750: 43-51.
  • Angus JA, Korner PI, Wright CE. Pharmacology and the elucidation of function. Trends Pharmacol Sci 2011; 32: 235-241.
  • Herrera M, Collaço RCO, Villalta M, Segura A, Vargas M, Wright CE, Paiva OK, Matainaho T, Jensen SD, León G, Williams DJ, Rodrigues-Simioni L, Gutiérrez JM. Neutralization of the neuromuscular inhibition of venom and taipoxin from the taipan (Oxyuranus scutellatus) by F(ab’)2 and whole IgG antivenoms. Toxicol Lett 2016; 241: 175-183.
  • Khammy MM, Angus JA, Wright CE. Vascular reactivity of rabbit isolated renal and femoral resistance arteries in renal wrap hypertension. Eur J Pharmacol 2016; 773: 32-41.
  • Korner PI, Wright CE, Angus JA. A new approach to assessing the structural total peripheral resistance amplifier in renal (Page) hypertension in conscious rabbits. J Hypertens 2010; 28: 1862-1874.
  • Mamo YA, Angus JA, Ziogas J, Soeding PF, Wright CE. The role of voltage-operated and non-voltage-operated calcium channels in endothelin-induced vasoconstriction of rat cerebral arteries. Eur J Pharmacol 2014; 742: 65-73.
  • Angus JA, Rajasekaran P, Wright CE. Novel technique to determine the pKA of clonidine at prejunctional a2-adrenoceptors in cardiac and vascular sympathetic transmission. Eur J Pharmacol 2017; 800: 81-95.
  • Angus JA, Soeding PF, Hughes RJA, Wright CE. Functional estimation of endothelin-1 receptor antagonism by bosentan, macitentan and ambrisentan in human pulmonary and radial arteries in vitro. Eur J Pharmacol 2017; 804: 111-116.
  • Angus JA, Wright CE. ATP is not involved in a1-adrenoceptor-mediated vasoconstriction in resistance arteries. Eur J Pharmacol 2015; 769: 162-166.
  • Angus JA, Wright CE. Novel a1-adrenoceptor antagonism by the fluroquinolone antibiotic trovafloxacin. Eur J Pharmacol 2016; 791: 179-184.
  • Betrie AH, Lei P, Ayton S, Bush AI, Angus JA, Wright CE. Evidence of a cardiovascular function for microtubule-associated protein tau. J Alzheim Dis 2017; 56: 849-860.
  • Currigan DA, Hughes RJA, Wright CE, Angus JA, Soeding PF. Vasoconstrictor responses to vasopressor agents in human pulmonary and radial arteries: an in vitro study. Anesthesiology 2014; 121: 930-936.
  • Pla D, Bande BW, Welton RE, Paiva OK, Sanz L, Segura A, Wright CE, Calvete JJ, Gutiérrez JM, Williams DJ. Proteomics and antivenomics of Papuan black snake (Pseudechis papuanus) venom with analysis of its toxicological profile and the preclinical efficacy of Australian antivenoms. J Proteomics 2017; 150: 201-215.
  • Paiva OK, Pla D, Wright CE, Beutler M, Sanz L, Gutiérrez JM, Williams DJ, Calvete JJ. Combined venom gland cDNA sequencing and venomics of the New Guinea small-eyed snake, Micropechis ikaheka. J Proteomics 2014; 110: 209-229.
  • Pla D, Paiva OK, Sanz L, Wright CE, Beutler M, Calvete JJ, Williams DJ, Gutiérrez JM. Preclinical efficacy of Australian antivenoms against the venom of the small-eyed snake, Micropechis ikaheka, from Papua New Guinea: an antivenomics and neutralization study. J Proteomics 2014; 110: 198-208.
  • Tung KH, Angus JA, Wright CE.Contrasting cardiovascular properties of the µ-opioid agonists morphine and methadone in the rat. Eur J Pharmacol 2015; 762: 372-381.