Dawbuts was established in 2009 to provide services to the livestock industry. Dawbuts is dedicated to supporting its customers and their animals.

Dawbuts is focused on providing parasitology diagnostic services; contract research for pharmaceutical companies both in Australia and overseas; training in animal health, production and biosecurity to pharmaceutical and rural store merchandise employees and producers; and on-farm advisory and consultancy to producers.

A highly skilled and experienced livestock veterinary parasitologist, Matt Playford, leads the Dawbuts team. The Dawbuts team can assist you, with navigating through the maze of parasite management and drench resistance in livestock to minimise stock losses and maximise production.  

A list of selected Publications.

The Dawbuts Team

Matt Playford – Managing Director


Matt is the owner of Dawbuts. After graduating in veterinary science from the University of Sydney in 1986, he did an internship in pastoral medicine then worked in rural practice in NSW and Victoria. From 1989 to 1994 Matt undertook research at Hokkaido University, completing a doctorate in parasite immunology.

He taught livestock medicine and managed the large animal teaching practice at the University of Queensland from 1995-1999, then worked in R&D within a corporate pharmaceutical and as a veterinary consultant before founding Dawbuts Pty Ltd in October 2009.

Janina McKay-Demeler – Research Manager


Janina studied Veterinary Medicine at the University of Hannover, Germany. She moved to Australia after graduating and worked as a vet, predominantly with cattle, sheep and horses. Janina began her PhD at the University of Sydney under supervision of Nick Sangster and Georg von Samson-Himmelstjerna, graduating in 2005. Janina completed her first Postdoc position in Hannover 2006 in PARASOL EU project before becoming a specialist in Veterinary Parasitology in 2008. Beginning 2009, Janina began her second PhD on molecular parasitology at the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover in 2009. Janina worked as Associate Professor from 2010-2016 at the University of Berlin, before joining the Dawbuts team in January 2018. Janina’s main interests include diagnosis of endoparasites, epidemiology, and mechanisms of anthelmintic resistance in nematodes, in vitro assay development, and tick-transmitted pathogens.

Sandy Playford – Administration and Accounts Manager


Sandy is a veterinarian with 30 years’ experience in small animal medicine and surgery. As well as working at Macarthur Vet Group, Sandy is the bookkeeper for the Dawbuts team. Outside of the office Sandy enjoys jogging, cycling, gardening and cooking.

Kim Dawson – Research Officer

Kim Dawson and Jack

Kim Dawson has been working with Dawbuts since 2012 in the lab and on various research projects. Prior to working at Dawbuts Kim worked extensively in parasitology and research and development. Kim worked with Coopers Animal Health in 1979 and worked on such products as Clout. In 1985 Kim spent two years in Samoa working on an Aid Project to manage a Pig, Poultry and Goat farm. Soon after returning to Australia Kim joined the NSW Department of Agriculture to work on synthetic pyrethroid Resistance in sheep in 1987. From 1991 to 2011 conducted Contract Research for chemical companies on internal and external parasites in domestic livestock whilst completing extensive work in developing equine anthelmintics during that time. Also in 2011 was Acting Manager of EMAI.

Phil Stein

Phil Stein

Phil started his animal health career at CSIRO McMaster Farm at Badgerys Creek in 1982 as a technical assistant overseeing the running of the Ivermectin field trials. This was released commercially in 1988 as the first of the ML family of drenches. During this time skills such as FECs, larval differentiation and total worm counts were fine-tuned and remain valuable assets today. During his 18 years with CSIRO he went on to work on many other research projects including Drenchrite commercialisation and the Nematophagus Fungi project and developed skills managing many different parasite models and running the McMaster Parasitology Laboratory.

In 2000 his time with CSIRO came to an end and life at Yarrandoo Research Centre commenced. First working for MST as Lab Manager running many different screening assays and writing several SOPs for ISO 9000 accreditation. The opportunity came up in 2004 to take a position in the Parasitology team with Novartis AH. Timing was impeccable as they were just starting work on a new chemical class which would become the first new AH drug active since 1988; monepantel. The parasitology skills developed over years proved invaluable to the project. Over a period of several years Phil oversaw the isolation of one of the most comprehensive sheep and cattle nematode libraries in existence (resistant and susceptible). These isolates were used for cattle, goat and sheep studies during the development of Zolvix and Zolvix Plus.

During his time at Yarrandoo he progressed to manager of the Parasitology Laboratory and reached the level of Principal scientist. Phil has extensive experience with internal and external parasites of farm and companion animals along with expertise in running laboratory, pen and field based studies. Phil has been author and co-author of several papers and has made oral and written presentations at various conferences including WAAVP (Calgary 2009) and International Sheep Veterinary Conference (Rotorua 2013).

Phil joined the Dawbuts team as a Scientific Officer in August 2017 and works in the parasitology laboratory and on various research projects.

Nicole Selwood


Nicole completed a Bachelor of Animal and Veterinary Science at the University of Sydney. With a strong interest in livestock parasitology, Nicole pursued her honours project in northern Laos where she studied the prevalence of Ascarids in cattle and buffalo calves, and their susceptibility to medicated and un-medicated urea molasses blocks. During her time in Laos, Nicole gained a wealth of experience and skills. She spent most of her time out in the field collecting samples and data as well as working in the Department of Livestock and Fisheries Laos laboratory to analyse samples. Nicole has now moved onto her masters degree, studying her Masters in Biostatistics. She is also an equine enthusiast, spending much of her spare time out and about with her horses.

Adriana Trecapelli 


Adriana also graduated from a Bachelor of Animal and Veterinary Bioscience majoring in Animal Health and Disease at the University of Sydney. Her honours involved looking at how livestock ownership could improve food security and malnutrition in children in Timor Leste. Throughout uni, Adriana was a member of the ICMJ Contest, and also travelled to Indonesia and Cambodia on an International Livestock Production Tour with the University of Adelaide. From these experiences, she has gained a strong interest in the areas of food security, food safety, biosecurity and animal health and recognizes the value of addressing these areas through one holistic approach.