Jess Nithianantharajah

Associate Professor
The Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health

University of Melbourne

Melbourne, VIC

Contact me for

  • Mentoring
  • Sitting on boards or committees
  • Providing an expert opinion
  • Outreach activities
  • Conference presenting
  • Opportunities to collaborate


Dr. Jess Nithianantharajah is an Australian Research Council Future Fellow and heads the Synapse Biology and Cognition laboratory at the Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health, University of Melbourne. She completed her doctorate in behavioural neuroscience at the University of Melbourne and commenced postdoctoral training at the Howard Florey Institute. She was recruited as a postdoctoral fellow to the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Cambridge UK during which time she also held a joint appointment at the University of Cambridge working on the development of the rodent touchscreen cognitive tests – ‘iPads for mice’ to test animals on complex learning tasks like that used in the clinic with patients. This innovative behavioural tool has advanced how we model complex learning and mental processes in animals. She then relocated to the University of Edinburgh before returning to Melbourne as a Research Group Leader and establish her laboratory at The Florey Institute. Her research aims to understand how the connections between brain cells (synapses) are important for complex cognition and mental disorders.