Professor Stewart Head

Professor Stewart Head

Chair of Physiology,
School of Medicine



  • PhD Bristol University (UK)

Organisational Unit (School / Division)

  • School of Medicine


Phone: (02) 4620 3306
Mobile: 0437349176
Location: 30.2.29

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Chapters in Books

  • Friedrich, O. and Head, S. (2017), 'Quantitative ratiometric Ca2+ imaging to assess cell viability', Cell Viability Assays: Methods and Protocols, Humana Press 9781493969593.
  • Head, S. (2012), 'A two stage model of skeletal muscle necrosis in muscular dystrophy : the role of fiber branching in the terminal stage', Muscular Dystrophy, InTech 9789535106036.
  • Anderson, J., Head, S. and Morley, J. (2012), 'Duchenne muscular dystrophy and brain function', Muscular Dystrophy, InTech 9789535106036.

Journal Articles

  • Haug, M., Reischl, B., Prolss, G., Pollmann, C., Buckert, T., Keidel, C., Schurmann, S., Hock, M., Rupitsch, S., Heckel, M., Poschel, T., Scheibel, T., Haynl, C., Kiriaev, L., Head, S. and Friedrich, O. (2018), 'The MyoRobot : a novel automated biomechatronics system to assess voltage/Ca2+ biosensors and active/passive biomechanics in muscle and biomaterials', Biosensors and Bioelectronics, vol 102 , pp 589 - 599.
  • Kiriaev, L., Kueh, S., Morley, J., North, K., Houweling, P. and Head, S. (2018), 'Branched fibers from old fast-twitch dystrophic muscles are the sites of terminal damage in muscular dystrophy', American Journal of Physiology: Cell Physiology, vol 314, no 6 , pp 662 - 674.
  • Garton, F., Houweling, P., Vukcevic, D., Meehan, L., Lee, F., Lek, M., Roeszler, K., Hogarth, M., Tiong, C., Zannino, D., Yang, N., Leslie, S., Gregorevic, P., Head, S., Seto, J. and North, K. (2018), 'The effect of ACTN3 gene doping on skeletal muscle performance', The American Journal of Human Genetics, vol 102, no 5 , pp 845 - 857.
  • Hogarth, M., Houweling, P., Thomas, K., Gordish-Dressman, H., Bello, L., Vishwanathan, V., Chidambaranathan, S., Biggar, W., McAdam, L., Mah, J., Tulinius, M., Cnaan, A., Morgenroth, L., Leshner, R., Tesi-Rocha, C., Thangarajh, M., Duong, T., Kornberg, A., Head, S. and North, K. (2017), 'Evidence for ACTN3 as a genetic modifier of Duchenne muscular dystrophy', Nature Communications, vol 8 .
  • Head, S. (2017), 'Antioxidant therapy in a mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy : some promising results but with a weighty caveat', Journal of Physiology, vol 595, no 23 , pp 7015 - 7015.
  • Hogarth, M., Garton, F., Houweling, P., Tukiainen, T., Lek, M., Macarthur, D., Seto, J., Quinlan, K., Yang, N., Head, S. and North, K. (2016), 'Analysis of the ACTN3 heterozygous genotype suggests that a-actinin-3 controls sarcomeric composition and muscle function in a dose-dependent fashion', Human Molecular Genetics, vol 25, no 5 , pp 866 - 877.
  • Head, S., Chan, S., Houweling, P., Quinlan, K., Murphy, R., Wagner, S., Friedrich, O. and North, K. (2015), 'Altered Ca2+ kinetics associated with a-actinin-3 deficiency may explain positive selection for ACTN3 null allele in human evolution', PLoS Genetics, vol 11, no 1 .
  • Cooper, S. and Head, S. (2015), 'Membrane injury and repair in the muscular dystrophies', Neuroscientist, vol 21, no 6 , pp 653 - 668.
  • Houweling, P., Seto, J., Garton, F., Quinlan, K., Head, S. and North, K. (2015), 'A gene for speed : the influence of ACTN3 on muscle performance in health and disease', Neuromuscular Disorders, vol 25, no Supplement 2 , pp 185 - 185.
  • Head, S., Houweling, P., Chan, S., Chen, G. and Hardeman, E. (2014), 'Properties of regenerated mouse extensor digitorum longus muscle following notexin injury', Experimental Physiology, vol 99, no 4 , pp 664 - 674.
  • Yu, Z., Tan, J., McMahon, A., Iismaa, S., Xiao, X., Kesteven, S., Reichelt, M., Mohl, M., Smith, N., Fatkin, D., Allen, D., Head, S., Graham, R. and Feneley, M. (2014), 'RhoA/ROCK signaling and pleiotropic a1A-adrenergic receptor regulation of cardiac contractility', PLoS One, vol 9, no 6 .
  • Head, S. and Arber, M. (2013), 'An active learning mammalian skeletal muscle lab demonstrating contractile and kinetic properties of fast- and slow-twitch muscle', Advances in Physiology Education, vol 37, no 4 , pp 405 - 414.
  • Lee, A., Anderson, J., Joya, J., Head, S., Pather, N., Kee, A., Gunning, P. and Hardeman, E. (2013), 'Aged skeletal muscle retains the ability to fully regenerate functional architecture', BioArchitecture, vol 3, no 2 , pp 25 - 37.
  • Yu, Z., Tan, J., McMahon, A., Iismaa, S., Xiao, X., Kesteven, S., Reichelt, M., Mohl, M., Dai, Y., Sketchley, A., Yang, L., Gong, H., Fatkin, D., Allen, D., Head, S., Graham, R. and Feneley, M. (2013), 'Studies of a mouse model of cardic c a1A-adrenergic receptor over expression provide evidence for a critical role of RhoA/ROCK signalling in cardiac contractility', Heart Lung and Circulation, vol 22, no Supplement 1 , pp 59 - 59.
  • Head, S. (2012), 'Does skeletal muscle fiber branching play a role in the inability of old EDL dystrophic muscle to resist large passive stretches?', Journal of Applied Physiology, vol 112, no 2 , pp 331 - 331.
  • Kueh, S., Dempster, J., Head, S. and Morley, J. (2011), 'Reduced postsynaptic GABAA receptor number and enhanced gaboxadol induced change in holding currents in Purkinje cells of the dystrophin-deficient mdx mouse', Neurobiology of Disease, vol 43, no 3 , pp 558 - 564.
  • Head, S. and Ha, T. (2011), 'Acute inhibitory effects of clenbuterol on force, Ca 2+ transients and action potentials in rat soleus may not involve the B 2-adrenoceptor pathway', Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology, vol 38, no 9 , pp 638 - 646.
  • Nikolova-Krstevski, V., Leimena, C., Xiao, X., Kesteven, S., Tan, J., Yeo, L., Yu, Z., Zhang, Q., Carlton, A., Head, S., Shanahan, C., Feneley, M. and Fatkin, D. (2011), 'Nesprin-1 and actin contribute to nuclear and cytoskeletal defects in lamin A/C-deficient cardiomyopathy', Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology, vol 50, no 3 , pp 479 - 486.
  • Seto, J., Chan, S., Turner, N., MacArthur, D., Raftery, J., Berman, Y., Quinlan, K., Cooney, G., Head, S., Yang, N. and North, K. (2011), 'The effect of a-actinin-3 deficiency on muscle aging', Experimental Gerontology, vol 46, no 4 , pp 292 - 302.
  • Chan, S. and Head, S. (2011), 'The role of branched fibres in the pathogenesis of Duchenne muscular dystrophy', Experimental Physiology, vol 96, no 6 , pp 564 - 571.
  • Seto, J., Lek, M., Quinlan, K., Houwelling, P., Zheng, X., Garton, F., MacArthur, D., Raftery, J., Garvey, S., Hauser, M., Yang, N., Head, S. and North, K. (2011), 'Deficiency of a-actinin-3 is associated with increased susceptibility to contraction-induced damage and skeletal muscle remodeling', Human Molecular Genetics, vol 20, no 15 , pp 2914 - 2927.
  • Head, S., Greenaway, B. and Chan, S. (2011), 'Incubating isolated mouse EDL muscles with creatine improves force production and twitch kinetics in fatigue due to reduction in ionic strength', PLoS One, vol 6, no 8 .
  • Chan, S., Seto, J., Houweling, P., Yang, N., North, K. and Head, S. (2011), 'Properties of extensor digitorum longus muscle and skinned fibers from adult and aged male and female ACTN3 knockout mice', Muscle and Nerve, vol 43, no 1 , pp 37 - 48.
  • Head, S. (2011), 'Old men still have the skeletal muscle contractile function to get up and go even after they have had their leg in a cast', Journal of Physiology, vol 589, no 19 , pp 4639 - 4639.
  • Anderson, J., Morley, J. and Head, S. (2010), 'Enhanced homosynaptic LTD in cerebellar Purkinje cells of the dystrophic MDX mouse', Muscle and Nerve, vol 41, no 3 , pp 329 - 334.
  • Head, S. (2010), 'Branched fibres in old dystrophic mdx muscle are associated with mechanical weakening of the sarcolemma, abnormal Ca2+ transients and a breakdown of Ca2+ homeostasis during fatigue', Experimental Physiology, vol 95, no 5 , pp 641 - 656.
  • Kueh, S., Head, S. and Morley, J. (2008), 'GABAA receptor expression and inhibitory postsynaptic currents in cerebellar Purkinje cells in dystrophin-deficient mdx mice', Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology, vol 35, no 2 , pp 207 - 210.
  • Chan, S., Seto, J., MacArthur, D., Yang, N., North, K. and Head, S. (2008), 'A gene for speed : contractile properties of isolated whole EDL muscle from an a-actinin-3 knockout mouse', American Journal of Physiology: Cell Physiology, vol 295, no 4 , pp 897 - 904.
  • MacArthur, D., Seto, J., Chan, S., Quinlan, K., Raftery, J., Turner, N., Nicholson, M., Kee, A., Hardeman, E., Gunning, P., Cooney, G., Head, S., Yang, N. and North, K. (2008), 'An Actn3 knockout mouse provides mechanistic insights into the association between a-actinin-3 deficiency and human athletic performance', Human Molecular Genetics, vol 17, no 8 , pp 1076 - 1086.

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