Karen Holden

Dr Karen Holden is a Trainee Patent Attorney at Griffith Hack based in Melbourne.

Karen has recently joined the team as a Trainee Patent Attorney and brings 15 years of experience in research innovation, translation and commercialisation in the areas of biotechnology and molecular biology. She has extensive experience in the development and registration of therapeutics and vaccines for the treatment of human and veterinary infectious diseases. Her experience spans a range of settings, including academic research institutes, CSIRO, Australian SMEs and biotech start-ups.

Through first-hand experience, Karen understands the journey of the inventor from navigating the product development pipeline, regulatory frameworks, securing research funding, research programme management, clinical trials to business development and building a commercially savvy IP strategy and patent portfolio to protect the value of inventions.

Originally, Karen trained as a Molecular Bacteriologist and has developed a novel attenuation strategy for live bacterial vaccines, developed vaccine challenge models and nucleic acid-based diagnostics. Karen’s research has delivered proof of concept prototype vaccines for the poultry industry and silencing RNA technology to inhibit SARS CoV-2 replication.  Karen completed two post-doctoral fellowships in the area of poultry health and food safety (CSIRO ACDP, formerly AAHL; Melbourne University, Veterinary Science).

Karen’s key technology areas include biotechnology, microbiology, bioinformatics, vaccine development, infectious disease, poultry health, food safety, bioremediation, diagnostics.


  • Bachelor of Biological Sciences (Biochemistry and Microbiology), La Trobe University
  • Bachelor of Applied Science Honours (First class, Biotechnology), RMIT University
  • Doctorate of Applied Science (Molecular Microbiology), RMIT University
  • Adjunct Associate Professor and guest lecturer (Industrial Microbiology, ‘Concept to Commerce’), RMIT University


  • Member of the Australian Society for Microbiology