Researcher biography


Professor Martin Pera is the Program Leader of Stem Cells Australia. He has over 25 years experience in human pluripotent stem cell research and has authored over 100 peer reviewed publications. Pera was among a small number of researchers who pioneered the isolation and characterisation of pluripotent stem cells from human germ cell tumours of the testis, work that provided an important framework for the development of human embryonic stem cells.

His laboratory at Monash University was the second in the world to isolate embryonic stem cells from the human blastocyst, and the first to describe their differentiation into somatic cells in vitro. He has made major contributions to the understanding of human embryonic stem cell biology and has helped many trainees and collaborators to establish themselves in this area of research. He has provided extensive advice to state, national and international regulatory authorities on the scientific background to human embryonic stem cell research, and is a member of the Steering Group of the International Stem Cell Initiative. Most recently, Professor Martin Pera was Founding Director of the Eli and Edythe Broad Centre for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research at the University of Southern California.


  • University of Queensland, Honorary Professorship, 2010
  • Honorary Appointment, Conjoint Professor, School of Psychiatry, The University of New South Wales, 2009
  • Distinguished Alumni Award, George Washington University, 2007
  • Sir Louis Mathieson Distinguished Visiting Professor, Monash University, 2006
  • Member, The Hinxton Group, 2006
  • Management Board, International Society for the Study of Differentiation, 2005
  • Senior Scientist, Monash Institute of Reproduction and Development, 1997
  • National Research Service Award, National Institutes of Health (U.S.), 1979