Christine Winterbourn

Principal Investigator

MSc (Auckland), PhD (Massey) CNZM, FRSNZ

Tel 64 3 364 0564


Professor Christine Winterbourn is an Auckland University chemistry graduate who received her PhD in biochemistry from Massey University.

She did postdoctoral work at the University of British Columbia, Canada before returning to the Pathology Department, University of Otago, Christchurch, where she now has a personal chair.

Research interests

Professor Winterbourn has published more than 250 scientific papers. Her field of research is the biological chemistry of free radicals and other reactive oxidants and their involvement in health and disease.

Professor Winterbourn's focus is on understanding mechanisms of reactive oxidant production, the biochemistry of biological damage and the consequences for disease pathology.

Her current interests include:

  • the production of reactive oxidants by neutrophils and their involvement in microbial killing and inflammation
  • how neutrophils form extracellular traps (NETs)
  • how thiol proteins contribute to antioxidant defence and redox regulated cell signaling
  • biochemistry and cellular functions of mammalian peroxiredoxins
  • mechanisms of oxidative protein crosslinking
  • oxidant-antioxidant interactions in red blood cells

Other positions

  • Past member of the Health Research Council
  • Past member of the Marsden Fund Council
  • Editor of the Biochemical Journal
  • Editorial Board of Free Radical Biology and Medicine


  • University of Auckland Distinguished Alumni 2015
  • Royal Society of New Zealand's Rutherford Medal - the first woman to receive the award in its 20 year history
  • NZ Association of Scientists' Marsden Medal
  • Massey University 75th Anniversary Medal
  • Society for Free Radical Research (Australasia) Distinguished Service Award
  • University of Otago Distinguished Research Medal and Society for Free Radical Research (International) Trevor Slater Award


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