Professor Ana Traven


  • Infection & Immunity; Microbiology; Medical Mycology
  • Fungal Pathogens and Host Immune interactions
Professor Ana Traven is an Australian Research Council Future Fellow, Head of the Infection Program at the Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute and a Fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology (ASM). Her research has had a significant impact on understanding the mechanisms of virulence and immune interactions of major fungal pathogens that cause invasive disease with high mortality rates. She is the Monash Director of the Monash-Warwick Alliance program in Emerging Superbug Threats, an international and interdisciplinary training program aimed at building workforce capacity to tackle the rising global issue of AMR.

Ana and her team study how the fungal pathogen Candida mounts counter-attacks against host immune defences. They focus on building molecular understanding of the mechanisms that drive fungal virulence and host-pathogen interactions. Recent findings from the lab showed that competition with microbes for nutrients determines the fate of immune cells and immune responses to fungal infection. Building on this, the Traven lab investigates ways to modulate the immune system to fight off deadly infections by targeting metabolism and nutrition. Ana's research program also involves characterisation of antifungal compounds, including those targeting the emerging fungal superbug Candida auris.


● Understanding the interactions of Candida pathogens with innate immune cells.

● Studying metabolic changes in immune cells and pathogens that control their interactions and disease outcomes.

● Defining how metabolism controls virulence-related biology of Candida.

● Discovery and characterisation of new antifungal compounds.


● Build fundamental biomedical knowledge of fungal pathogenesis.

● Discoveries enabling antifungal drug discovery and pre-clinical characterisation of compounds with antifungal properties.