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Dr. Peter Temple-Smith

Director, EPRD/Senior Research Fellow, Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology
Monash University
Clayton Rd, Clayton, Victoria

Brief Biography:

Peter Temple-Smith is a zoologist by training and a reproductive biologist by discipline and research experience. He graduated in science, with a major in Zoology, from the University of Tasmania (BSc Hons) and completed a PhD in Zoology at the Australian National University in Canberra. His early research was on the breeding biology of native Australian fauna, an area in which he continues to retain a research interest. He was awarded a three year Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship in 1974 to study mammalian fertilisation and epididymal sperm maturation with Professor Michael Bedford in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Cornell University Medical Centre/New York Hospital complex in New York and then returned to Australia to a position in the Department of Anatomy at Monash University working with the reproductive biology group headed by Professor David de Kretser.


From the early 1980s to the mid-1990s, he collaborated with Monash IVF, particularly Professors Alan Trounson and David de Kretser, and Dr Graeme Southwick, a microsurgeon with research interests in infertility and plastic and aesthetic surgery, to develop various techniques relating to severe forms of male infertility. These techniques included microsurgical correction of obstructive azoospermia, the aetiology and diagnosis of Young’s Syndrome, epididymal aspiration with AI and IVF, aspiration of epididymal spermatozoa for ICSI and cryopreservation of immature spermatozoa for use in ICSI. The international success of these techniques resulted in invitations to national and international conferences and symposia to present results of the research. In 1984 and 1991 he worked as a consultant for the World Health Organisation participating in a workshop and training program in reproductive biology in Chengdu, China and a reproductive biology and microsurgery training program in Lima, Peru.

In 1988, with Professors David de Kretser, Roger Short and John Findlay and others, he helped establish, and became foundation Director of, the Monash University Centre for Reproductive Biology which later became the Education Program in Reproductive Biology. This program was built around two new postgraduate courses in reproduction – the Graduate Diploma and Masters of Reproductive Science – which had their first intake in 1989 and continue to be important and popular courses in this program.

In 1997 he was appointed Director of Conservation and Research at Zoos Victoria – Melbourne Zoo, Healesville Sanctuary and Werribee Open Range Zoo – and held this position until 2004. During his time at Zoos Victoria he directed conservation and research programs on native and exotic fauna, including various endangered species recovery programs including the eastern barred bandicoot, New Holland mouse, brush-tailed rock wallaby and the northern hairy-nosed wombat. Linkage programs with the University of Melbourne, Monash University and Deakin University led to ARC Linkage Grants to support some of these programs and he was appointed as a Professorial Fellow in the Department of Zoology at the University of Melbourne. He has a continuing interest in the use of ART for improving the conservation options, by improving reproductive outputs, for endangered species.

In 2005 he returned to Monash University as Director of the Education Program in Reproductive Biology (now the Education Program in Reproduction and Development, EPRD) and Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for Reproduction and Development at MIMR. He has chaired the two Monash Medical Centre Animal Ethics Committees and is a research fellow for the Australian Plastic Surgery Education Foundation, a founding member of the Victorian Biotechnology Ethics Advisory Committee, Professorial Fellow in Zoology at the University of Melbourne, Deputy Chair of the Higher Education Board of Studies at Box Hill TAFE and a Trustee of Wildlife Victoria. He has published over 110 papers in peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings and was co-investigator and co-author of a publication describing the sequencing of the platypus genome. His current research interests include comparative reproduction, sperm structure and function and manipulation of mammalian gametes, structure and function of the epididymis, the use of induced pluripotent stem cells in developing new tools for assisted reproduction of endangered species, and control of fibrosis in wound healing and fibrotic diseases.    



Academic positions:

2004-   Director, Education Programs in Reproduction & Development, and Senior Research Fellow Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Southern Clinical School, Monash University, Clayton VIC 3168, Australia.

2009-    PHI Fellow, Prince Henry’s Institute, Monash Medical Centre, Clayton VIC 3168, Australia.

2010-    Visiting Professor, Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Gadjah Mada University, Yogyakarta, Central Java, Indonesia.

1998-2002 Adjunct Professor (Honorary), Central Queensland University, Rockhampton, QLD Australia

1997-        Professorial Fellow (Honorary) Department of Zoology, University of Melbourne, Parkville, VIC Australia.

1997-2003 Director, Conservation and Research Conservation and Research Department, Zoos Victoria, VIC Australia.

1977-2000 Reader (1992-2000), Senior Lecturer (1986-1991),Lecturer (1978-1985),Senior Tutor (1977), Anatomy Department, Monash University, VIC Australia.

1989-1997  Director, Education Program in Reproductive Biology, Monash University, VIC Australia.

1992- 1998 Director, Board of the Family Planning Association of Victoria, VIC Australia.

1997          Visiting Scientist, Gamete Biology Laboratory, Institute of Zoology,The Zoological Society of London, London

1976-1977  N.I.H. Postdoctoral Fellow,                  Department of Physiology, Cornell University, Medical College, New York, NY

1974-1976   Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow, Reproductive Biology Unit, Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Cornell University Medical College, New York, NY

1970-1972 Demonstrator (part-time), Department of Zoology, Australian National University, Canberra, ACT, Australia


Research interests:

Comparative reproduction

Sperm structure and function

iPS cells, ART and conservation

Fibrosis and its control

Cryopreservation of reproductive tissues and gametes


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