Anissa Jabbour

Favourite Thing: Seeing or finding something new that no one else has seen before!



Ave Maria College (1991-1996)


2005, University of Melbourne, Doctor of Philosophy

Work History:

University of Melbourne – Department of Immunology, Department of Paediatrics. Royal Children’s Hospital. Murdoch Children’s Research Institute. Walter and Eliza Hall Institute.


Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research

Current Job:

I am a research scientist

Me and my work

Watching cells die!

Watching cells die!??!

Maybe that sounds mean? Not really. Every minute  – 300,000,000 cells die in the human body.

Oh NO…How do we survive then? Far more cells are being made than are dying (just means we have lots of new cells, for example skin cells).

My interest is to understand how cells commit to cell death and what they need to survive. Then to use this knowledge to find ways to remove damaged cancer cells from the body.



Example of a dying cell : )


Notice that the cell shrinks in size as it dies and gets all blebby!

The colours show different parts of the cell – red is the energy factory (called mitochondria), blue the brain centre (where the DNA is, called a nucleus) and the main part is green (this part is called the cytoplasm).

My Typical Day

A fun filled day of discovery!

Discovery starts with a question – so my day begins with first thinking of great scientific questions. Next designing an experimental approach and together with my fantastic group of co-workers, performing an experiment. The next part of the day is is the most fun – analysing the results to see if my original idea was right or wrong!

What I'd do with the money

Sponsor a school trip to a real research institute.

My Interview

How would you describe yourself in 3 words?

Geeky, funny, shy

Who is your favourite singer or band?


What is the most fun thing you've done?

Going to San Francisco…very cool city!

If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!

superhero power – teleportation! so I could go anywhere in the world at the snap of my fingers. finding a cure for cancer (even if that means I’d need a new job) and having an endless supply of quality chocolate…which is good for you : )

What did you want to be after you left school?

A scientist….of course : )

Were you ever in trouble in at school?


What's the best thing you've done as a scientist?

Published my findings!

Tell us a joke.

hmmm…I mean’t I’m funny when I do silly things like walking into things – not that I was a comedian! I’ll give it a go. Why do tigers have stripes? ________________ So they don’t get spotted (hahahahaha)

Sports followed

Tennis, swimming

Favourite team

The Aussie team of course!