Professor Samuel Breit graduated in Medicine from the University of NSW in 1974. He trained in clinical immunology and immunopathology at St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney and was awarded an FRACP and FRCPA in 1981. In 1983 he completed an MD research degree after which he undertook further post-doctoral studies at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda USA, funded by a fellowship from the NH&MRC. He returned to Australia in 1985 and in 1987 was appointed a staff specialist in clinical immunology and immunopathology at St Vincent’s Hospital and as an academic at the University of NSW. In 2002, Prof Breit was appointed Director of Immunopathology.
Much of his research has been focussed on a cytokine first discovered in his lab called MIC-1/GDF15, and in which he is a world leader. Based on his discoveries, a new diagnostic test to help in the management of cardiovascular disease was launched internationally in 2015/16. Other related research from his lab has been licensed to multinational pharmaceutical companies to allow the development of a therapeutic for cancer anorexia/cachexia and an anti-obesity drug.
His main clinical interests are the diagnosis and management of chronic inflammatory diseases. He is also actively involved in registrar training and research and heads a laboratory at St Vincent’s Centre for Applied Medical Research, which investigates immunological mechanisms and disease therapies. He has a particular interest in making discoveries that have a practical outcome for patients that can be translated into patient diagnostics or therapeutics.