Associate Professor of Medical Biology


Faculty of Health


School of Medicine


Geelong Waurn Ponds Campus


Bachelor of Applied Science, Deakin University, 2002
Doctor of Philosophy, Deakin University, 2005
Graduate Certificate of Higher Education, Deakin University, 2011

+61 3 522 72519


Associate Professor McGee obtained his PhD in Molecular Physiology from Deakin University in 2005 and completed postdoctoral training at the Department of Physiology, The University of Melbourne, and The Welcome Trust Biocentre, University of Dundee, Scotland. At the beginning of 2009, relocated his research program to the School of Medicine, Deakin University, where he currently heads the Metabolic Reprogramming Laboratory, within the Metabolic Research Unit.

Research interests

Chronic over-nutrition is driving an epidemic of chronic diseases that includes obesity and type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer. Cellular metabolic reprogramming underpins the pathogenesis of all of these diseases. Our laboratory aims to understand the mechanisms that mediate metabolic reprogramming in these diseases and seeks to leverage this knowledge to develop therapies to combat the chronic disease epidemic.


Dr McGee is a member of the Australian Diabetes Society, the Australian Physiological Society and the American Physiological Society.

Teaching interests

Associate Professor McGee is coordinator of the Metabolism and Musculoskeletal Topic of the Knowledge of Health and Illness Theme (HME201) within the Bachelor of Medicine/Bachelor of Surgery degree. He also contributes to teaching in other subjects including Molecular Biology Techniques (SBB321) and Research Methods (HBS400). Associate Professor McGee also supervisors honours and PhD students.

Knowledge areas

Metabolism, cell signalling, transcription, obesity and type 2 diabetes, cancer metabolism, cardiac metabolism

Professional activities

NHMRC Grant Review Panel Member -  2012, 2013, 2015

Treasurer, Metabolism and Molecular Medicine Special Interest Group, The Australian Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology - 2014 to present


Associate Professor McGee has been awarded research funds totalling in excess of $3 million, with the majority from external National Competitive Grant Schemes, such as the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), the Diabetes Australia Research Trust (DART) and the National Breast Cancer Foundation. Dr McGee has also been awarded prestigious fellowships, including an NHMRC Peter Doherty Fellowship, the DART Viertel Fellowship and an NHMRC Career Development Fellowship. He was also awarded the AK McIntrye Medal from the Australian Physiological Society in 2010.



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A syntenic cross species aneuploidy genetic screen links RCAN1 expression to β-cell mitochondrial dysfunction in Type 2 diabetes

Heshan Peiris, Michael D Duffield, Joao Fadista, Claire F Jessup, Vinder Kashmir, Dr Amanda Genders, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Alyce M Martin, Madiha Saiedi, Nicholas Morton, Roderick Carter, Michael A Cousin, Alexandros C Kokotos, Nikolay Oskolkov, Petr Volkov, Tertius A Hough, Elizabeth M C Fisher, Victor L J Tybulewicz, Jorge Busciglio, Pinar E Coskun, Ann Becker, Pavel V Belichenko, William C Mobley, A/Prof Michael Thomas Ryan, Jeng Yie Chan, D Ross Laybutt, P Toby Coates, Sijun Yang, Charlotte Ling, Leif Groop, Melanie A Pritchard, Damien J Keating

(2016), Vol. 12, pp. 1-24, PLoS genetics, San Francisco, Calif., C1


Deficiency in apoptosis-inducing factor recapitulates chronic kidney disease via aberrant mitochondrial homeostasis

Melinda T Coughlan, Gavin C. Higgins, Tuong-Vi Nguyen, Sally Penfold, Vicki Thallas Bonke, Sih Min Tan, Georg Ramm, Nicole J. Van Bergen, Darren C. Henstridge, Karly C. Sourris, Dr Brooke Elyse Harcourt, Ian A. Trounce, Portia M. Robb, Adrienne Laskowski, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Dr Amanda Genders, Prof Ken Walder, Brian G. Drew, Dr Paul Gregorevic, Hongwei Qian, Merlin C. Thomas, George Jerums, Richard J. Macisaac, Alison Skene, David A Power, Elif I. Ekinci, Xiaonan W. Wijeyeratne, Linda A. Gallo, Michal Herman-Edelstein, A/Prof Michael Thomas Ryan, Mark E. Cooper, David R. Thorburn, Josephine M. Forbes

(2016), Vol. 65, pp. 1085-1098, Diabetes, Alexandria, Va., C1


Metabolic remodelling in obesity and type 2 diabetes: pathological or protective mechanisms in response to nutrient excess?

Timothy Conner, Miss Sheree Martin, Dr Kirsten Howlett, A/Prof Sean Mcgee

(2015), Vol. 42, pp. 109-115, Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology, England, London, C1


Age-related proteostasis and metabolic alterations in Caspase-2-deficient mice.

Claire Wilson, S Shalini, A Filipovska, T Richman, S. Davies, Mr Sean Martin, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, J Puccini, A Nikolic, L Dorstyn, S Kumar

(2015), Vol. 6, pp. e1597-, Cell Death and Disease, England, C1


ATGL-mediated triglyceride turnover and the regulation of mitochondrial capacity in skeletal muscle

Ruth C Meex, Andrew J Hoy, Rachael Mason, Miss Sheree Martin, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Dr Clinton Bruce, Matthew J Watt

(2015), Vol. 308, pp. E960-E970, AJP - Endocrinology and metabolism, Bethesda, MD, C1


N-Acetylcysteine improves mitochondrial function and ameliorates behavioral deficits in the R6/1 mouse model of Huntington's disease

D J Wright, T Renoir, Dr Zoe Smith, A E Frazier,, Prof Paul Francis, D R Thorburn, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Anthony Hannan, Dr Laura Gray

(2015), Vol. 5, pp. 1-10, Translational psychiatry, New York, N. Y., C1


3T3-L1 adipocytes display phenotypic characteristics of multiple adipocyte lineages

A/Prof Sean Mcgee

(2015), Vol. 4, pp. 295-302, Adipocyte, London, Eng., C1


Lipid abundance in zebrafish embryos is regulated by complementary actions of the endocannabinoid system and retinoic acid pathway

Mr Daniel Fraher, Ms Megan Ellis, Ms Shona Morrison, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Prof Alister Ward, Prof Ken Walder, Dr Yann Gibert

(2015), Vol. 156, pp. 3596-3609, Endocrinology, Bethesda, Md., C1


The CDP-Ethanolamine Pathway Regulates Skeletal Muscle Diacylglycerol Content and Mitochondrial Biogenesis without Altering Insulin Sensitivity.

Dr Ahrathy Selathurai, Dr Greg Kowalski, Micah Burch, Mr Patricio Sepulveda, Steve Risis, Dr Robert Lee-Young, Dr Severine Lamon, A/Prof Peter Meikle, Dr Amanda Genders, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Matthew J Watt, Prof Aaron Russell, Matthew Frank, Suzanne Jackowski, Prof Mark Febbraio, Dr Clinton Bruce

(2015), Vol. 21, pp. 718-730, Cell metabolism, United States, C1


Mitochondrial dysfunction has divergent, cell type-dependent effects on insulin action

Miss Sheree Martin, Ms Shona Morrison, Dr Nicky Konstantopoulos, A/Prof Sean Mcgee

(2014), Vol. 3, pp. 408-418, Molecular metabolism, Amsterdam, Netherlands, C1


Response of BRAF-mutant melanoma to BRAF inhibition is mediated by a network of transcriptional regulators of glycolysis.

Tiffany Parmenter, Margarete Kleinschmidt, Kathryn Kinross, Mr Simon Bond, Jason Li, Mohan Kaadige, Aparna Rao, Karen E Sheppard, Willy Hugo, Gulietta M Pupo, Richard C. M. Pearson, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Georgina V Long, Richard A. Scolyer, Helen Rizos, Roger S Lo, Carleen Cullinane, Donald E Ayer, Antoni Ribas, Ricky W. Johnstone, Rodney J. Hicks, Grant McArthur

(2014), Vol. 4, pp. 423-433, Cancer Discovery, Philadelphia, PA, C1


Compensatory regulation of HDAC5 in muscle maintains metabolic adaptive responses and metabolism in response to energetic stress

A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Sebastian B Jorgensen, Bruce E. Kemp, Keith Baar, Dr Gregory Steinberg, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2014), Vol. 28, pp. 3384-3395, FASEB journal, Bethesda, MD, C1


The role of mitochondria in the aetiology of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes

Miss Sheree Martin, A/Prof Sean Mcgee

(2014), Vol. 1840, pp. 1303-1312, Biochimica et biophysica acta, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1


Abnormal mitochondrial L-arginine transport contributes to the pathogenesis of heart failure and rexoygenation injury

David A Williams, Dr Kylie Venardos, Melissa Byrne, Mandar Joshi, Duncan Horlock, Nicholas T Lam, Dr Paul Gregorevic, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, David Kaye

(2014), Vol. 9, pp. 1-11, PLoS one, San Francisco, CA, C1


Activating HSP72 in rodent skeletal muscle increases mitochondrial number and oxidative capacity and decreases insulin resistance

Dr Clinton Bruce, Kalman Tory, Attila Kolonics, Mr Timothy Connor, Mr Matthew Watt, Kevin Carpenter, Prof Mark Hargreaves, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Andrea L Hevener

(2014), pp. 1881-1894, Diabetes, Alexandria, Virginia, C1


Differentiated mTOR but not AMPK signaling after strength vs endurance exercise in training-accustomed individuals

A/Prof Kristian Vissing, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, J. Farup, T. Kjolhede, M. H. Vendelbo, N Jessen

(2013), Vol. 23, pp. 355-366, Scandinavian journal of medicine and science in sports, Malden, Mass., C1


Effect of DHA and CoenzymeQ10 against Aβ- and zinc-induced mitochondrial dysfunction in human neuronal cells

Ms Nadia Christella Sadli, Prof Colin Barrow, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, A/Prof Cenk Suphioglu

(2013), Vol. 32, pp. 243-252, Cellular physiology and biochemistry, Berlin, Germany, C1


Metabolic profile analysis of zebrafish embryos

Dr Yann Gibert, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Prof Alister Ward

(2013), Vol. 71, pp. 1-5, Journal of visualized experiments, Cambridge, Mass., C1


Zinc Finger Nuclease mediated knockout of ADP dependent Glucokinase in Cancer cell lines: Effects on cell survival and Mitochondrial Oxidative Metabolism

Susan Richter, Ms Shona Morrison, Mr Timothy Connor, Jiechuang Su, Cristin G Print, Ron S Roniums, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, William R Wilson

(2013), Vol. 8, pp. 1-17, PLOS One, San Francisco, CA, C1


Caveolin-1 Is Necessary for Hepatic Oxidative Lipid Metabolism: Evidence for Crosstalk between Caveolin-1 and Bile Acid Signaling

Manuel Alejandro Fernandez-Rojo, Milena Gongora, Rebecca L Fitzsimmons, Nick Martel, Miss Sheree Martin, Susan J Nixon, Andrew J Brooks, Maria P Ikonomopoulou, Sally Martin, Harriet P Lo, Stephen A Myers, Christina Restall, Charles Ferguson, Paul F Pilch, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Robin L. Anderson, Michael J Waters, John F Hancock, Prof Sean Grimmond, George E. O. Muscat, Prof Robert Parton

(2013), Vol. 4, pp. 238-247, Cell Reports, Cambridge, MA, C1


Skeletal muscle fat metabolism after exercise in humans: influence of fat availability

Mr Nicholas Kimber, A/Prof David Cameron-Smith, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2013), Vol. 114, pp. 1577-1585, Journal of Applied Physiology, Bethesda, Md., C1


The bone morphogenetic protein axis is a positive regulator of skeletal muscle mass

Catherine E Winbanks, Justin L Chen, Hongwei Qian, Yingying Liu, Bianca C Bernardo, Claudia Beyer, Kevin I Watt, Ms Rachel Thomson, Mr Timothy Connor, Bradley J. Turner, Julie R McMullen, Lars Larsson, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Craig A Harrison, Dr Paul Gregorevic

(2013), Vol. 203, pp. 345-357, The Journal of Cell Biology, New York, NY, C1


Dichloroacetate inhibits aerobic glycolysis in multiple myeloma cells and increases sensitivity to bortezomib

W Y Sanchez, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Mr Timothy Connor, B Mottram, A Wilkinson, Jonathan P. Whitehead, Susan Vukovic, L Catley

(2013), Vol. 108, pp. 1624-1633, British journal of cancer, London, England, C1


Chronic adrenocorticotrophic hormone treatment alters tricyclic antidepressant efficacy and prefrontal monoamine tissue levels

Mr Adam Walker, Sandy A Burnett, Ms Kyoko Hasebe, Prof Jane McGillivray, Dr Laura Gray, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Prof Ken Walder, Prof Michael Berk, Dr Susannah Tye

(2013), Vol. 242, pp. 76-83, Behavioural brain research, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1


Histone deacetylase 5 regulates glucose uptake and insulin action in muscle cells

Suryaprakash Raichur, Song Hooi-Teh, Kenji Ohwaki, Ms Vidhi Gaur, Yun Chau Long, Prof Mark Hargreaves, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Jun Kusunoki

(2012), Vol. 49, pp. 203-211, Journal of molecular endocrinology, Bristol, England, C1


Exercise increases skeletal muscle GLUT4 gene expression in patients with type 2 diabetes

S. E. Hussey, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Dr Andrew Garnham, G McConell, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2012), Vol. 14, pp. 768-771, Diabetes, obesity and metabolism, Oxford, England, C1


Caveolin-1 orchestrates the balance between glucose and lipid-dependent energy metabolism : implications for liver regeneration

Manuel Alejandro Fernandez-Rojo, Christina Restall, Charles Ferguson, Nick Martel, Sally Martin, Marta Bosch, Adam Kassan, Gary M. Leong, Miss Sheree Martin, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, George E. O. Muscat, Robin L. Anderson, Carlos Enrich, Albert Pol, Prof Robert Parton

(2012), Vol. 55, pp. 1574-1584, Hepatology, Hoboken, N. J., C1


Hedgehog partial agonism drives warburg-lie metabolism in muscle and brown fat

Raffaele Teperino, Sabine Amann, Martina Bayer, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Andrea Loipetzberger, Mr Timothy Connor, Carsten Jaeger, Bernd Kammerer, Lilli Winter, Gerhard Wiche, Kevin Dalgaard, Madhan Selvaraj, Michael Gaster, R. S. Lee-Young, Prof Mark Febbraio, Claude Knauf, Patrice Cani

(2012), Vol. 151, pp. 414-426, Cell, Cambridge, Mass., C1


Histone modifications and exercise adaptations

A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2011), Vol. 110, pp. 258-263, Journal of applied physiology, Bethesda, Md., C1


Exercise training increases adipose tissue GLUT4 expression in patients with type 2 diabetes

S. E. Hussey, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Dr Andrew Garnham, J. M. Wentworth, Asker Jeukendrup, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2011), Vol. 13, pp. 959-962, Diabetes, obesity and metabolism, West Sussex, England, C1-1


AMPK-mediated transcription in skeletal muscle

A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2010), Vol. 118, pp. 507-518, Clinical science, London, England, C1


Acute signalling responses to intense endurance training commenced with low or normal muscle glycogen

Wee Kian Yeo, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Andrew L. Carey, Carl D Paton, Dr Andrew Garnham, Prof Mark Hargreaves, John A. Hawley

(2010), Vol. 95, pp. 351-358, Experimental physiology, Oxford, England, C1


Histone modifications and skeletal muscle metabolic gene expression

A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2010), Vol. 37, pp. 392-396, Clinical and experimental pharmacology and physiology, Richmond, Vic., C1


Exercise-induced histone modifications in human skeletal muscle

A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Erin Fairlie, Dr Andrew Garnham, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2009), Vol. 587, pp. 5951-5958, Journal of physiology, Oxford, England, C1


Comparative structural analyses of purified glycogen particles from rat liver, human skeletal muscle and commercial preparations

Je-Hoon Ryu, Mr Jace Drain, Jung Hwan Kim, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Angus Gray-Weale, Lynne Waddington, Glendon J. Parker, Prof Mark Hargreaves, Sang-Ho Yoo, David Stapleton

(2009), Vol. 45, pp. 478-482, International journal of biological macromolecules, Amsterdam, Netherlands, C1


Signalling GLUTtony keeps the sugar coming through glucose transporter expression

A/Prof Sean Mcgee

(2009), Vol. 587, pp. 4133-4134, Journal of physiology, Oxford, England, C1


Brief intense interval exercise activates AMPK and p38 MAPK signaling and increases the expression of PGC-1α in human skeletal muscle

Martin J. Gibala, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Dr Andrew Garnham, Dr Kirsten Howlett, Prof Rod Snow, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2009), Vol. 106, pp. 929-934, Journal of applied physiology, Bethesda, Md., C1


AMPK and transcriptional regulation

A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2008), Vol. 13, pp. 3022-3033, Frontiers in bioscience, Albertson, NY, C1-1


Normal hypertrophy accompanied by phosphoryation and activation of AMP-activated protein kinase α1 following overload in LKB1 knockout mice

A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Kirsty J. Mustard, D. Grahame Hardie, Keith Baar

(2008), Vol. 586, pp. 1731-1741, Journal of physiology, Oxford, England, C1-1


Metabolic adaptations to short-term high-intensity interval training : a little pain for a lot of gain?

Martin J. Gibala, A/Prof Sean Mcgee

(2008), Vol. 36, pp. 58-63, Exercise and sport sciences reviews, Philadelphia, Pa., C1-1


Intravenous AICAR administration reduces hepatic glucose output and inhibits whole body lipolysis in type 2 diabetic patients

N Boon, M Bosselaar, S Praet, Ellen Blaak, W.H.M. Saris, Anton J. M. Wagenmakers, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, C.J. Tack, P. Smits, Prof Mark Hargreaves, Luc J. C. van Loon

(2008), Vol. 51, pp. 1893-1900, Diabetologia, Heidelberg, Germany, C1-1


Similar metabolic adaptations during exercise after low volume sprint interval and traditional endurance training in humans

Kirsten A. Burgomaster, Krista Howarth, Stuart M Phillips, Mark Rakobowchuck, Maureen J. MacDonald, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Martin J. Gibala

(2008), Vol. 586, pp. 151-160, Journal of physiology, Oxford, England, C1-1


Optimizing training adaptations by manipulating glycogen

Keith Baar, A/Prof Sean Mcgee

(2008), Vol. 8, pp. 97-106, European journal of sport science, Abingdon, England, C1-1


Effect of sex differences on human MEF2 regulation during endurance exercise

A/Prof Kristian Vissing, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Carsten Roepstorff, Peter Scherling, Prof Mark Hargreaves, Bente Kiens

(2008), Vol. 294, pp. 408-415, American journal of physiology : endocrinology and metabolism, Bethesada, Md., C1-1


AMP-activated protein kinase regulates GLUT4 transcription by phosphorylating histone deacetylase 5

A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Bryce J.W van Denderen, Dr Kirsten Howlett, Janelle Mollica, Jonathan D. Schertzer, Bruce E. Kemp, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2008), Vol. 57, pp. 860-867, Diabetes, Alexandria, Va., C1-1


Exercise and MEF2–HDAC interactions.

A/Prof Sean Mcgee

(2007), Vol. 32, pp. 852-856, Applied physiology, nutrition and metabolism, Ottawa, Ontario, C1-1


Exercise and skeletal muscle glucose transporter 4 expression: molecular mechanisms

A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2006), Vol. 33, pp. 395-399, Clinical and experimental pharmacology and physiology, Richmond, Vic., C1-1


Exercise increases MEF2- and GEF DNA-binding activity in human skeletal muscle

A/Prof Sean Mcgee, David Sparling, Ann-Louise Olson, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2006), Vol. 20, pp. 348-349, FASEB journal, Bethesada, Md., C1-1


Reduced glycogen availability is associated with increased AMPKα2 activity, nuclear AMPKα2 protein abundance, and GLUT4 mRNA expression in contracting human skeletal muscle

Dr Gregory Steinberg, Mr Matthew Watt, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Stanley Chan, Prof Mark Hargreaves, Prof Mark Febbraio, David Stapleton, Bruce E. Kemp

(2006), Vol. 31, pp. 302-312, Applied physiology, nutrition, and metabolism, Ottawa, Ont., C1-1


Effect of carbohydrate ingestion on exercise-induced alterations in metabolic gene expression

Laura Cluberton, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Robyn M. Murphy, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2005), Vol. 99, pp. 1359-1363, Journal of applied physiology, Bethesda, Md., C1-1


Altering dietary nutrient intake that reduces glycogen content leads to phosphorylation of nuclear p38 MAP kinase in human skeletal muscle: association with IL-6 gene transcription during contraction

M.H. Stanley Chan, A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Mr Matthew Watt, Prof Mark Hargreaves, Prof Mark Febbraio

(2004), Vol. September, pp. 1-16, FASEB Journal, Bethesda, MD, C1


Exercise and myocyte enhancer factor 2 regulation in human skeletal muscle

A/Prof Sean Mcgee, Prof Mark Hargreaves

(2004), Vol. 53, pp. 1208-1214, Diabetes, New York, N.Y., C1