Prof Jenny Graves

Distinguished Professor of Genetics and Vice Chancellor's Fellow, La Trobe University

Jenny Graves is an evolutionary geneticist whose research exploits the genetic diversity of Australia’s unique mammals as a source of genetic variation to study the organisation, function and evolution of mammalian genomes. This has lead to new theories of the origin and evolution of human sex chromosomes and sex determining genes.

Jenny is Distinguished Professor and Vice Chancellor’s Fellow at La Trobe University, Professor Emeritus at ANU and Thinker-in-Residence at the University of Canberra.

She is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science, and served on the Executive for eight years, first as Foreign Secretary, then as Secretary for Education and Public Affairs. She was elected a Foreign Member of the National Academy of Science USA in 2019.

Jenny is an international L’Oreal-UNESCO Laureate (2006) and has made many contributions to women in science at the local and international level. She was made an Officer in the Order of Australia (AO) in 2009 and a Companion in the Order of Australia (AC) in 2022. She won the Prime Minister’s Prize for Science in 2017, the first woman to be individually recognised.

More from this expert

The Y chromosome is a never-ending source of fascination (particularly to men) because it bears genes that determine maleness and make sperm. It’s also small and seriously weird; it carries few genes and is full of junk DNA that makes it horrendous to sequence.

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