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NHMRC Research Trackers 2010

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December 2010

NHMRC Tracker – 17 December 2010 edition

Emeritus Professor Frank Fenner commemorated by NHMRC

NHMRC announced today that it will honour Frank Fenner’s achievements and contribution to global health with the Frank Fenner Early Career Fellowship. The fellowship will be awarded annually to an Early Career Fellow whose research is in the field in which Frank achieved so much. More detail is available on the NHMRC website.

NHMRC Excellence Awards

NHMRC Excellence Awards were announced in Canberra on 15 December. These awards go to top-ranked researchers from the peer review of the 2010 funding round and recognise the scientific merit, innovation and success of these leading health and medical researchers.

NHMRC congratulates:

• Professor Jürgen Götz, University of Sydney
• Professor Paul Hodges, University of Queensland
• Professor Guy Marks, University of Sydney
• Dr Tania de Koning-Ward, Deakin University
• Assoc Professor Wendy Oddy, Telethon Institute for Child Health Research
• Dr Michael Valenzuela, University of New South Wales
• Dr Patricia Valery, Queensland Institute of Medical Research
• Dr Tony Velkov, Deakin University
• Dr Grant Waterer, University of Western Australia
• Dr Di Yu, Monash University

A profile of each recipient and the presentation they gave at the award ceremony is available from the NHMRC website.

Summary of key changes in NHMRC Project Grants funding policy

Key changes have been made to the Project Grants policy for 2011. These include:

• revision of the process for consent to be a Chief Investigator;

• clarification of policy on career disruption, including pregnancy, childbirth, family responsibilities, major illness and career responsibilities;

• clarification of policy on retracted publications;

• revision of the NHMRC Project Grant Category Descriptors for peer review;

• provision of additional information is available on Direct Research Costs;

• revision of the requirements for recording time commitment to the project;

• addition of Maternity Services and the Hearing Loss Prevention Program to Special Initiatives funded through the Department of Health and Ageing; and

• new and changed wording for the Strategic Initiatives, including building a better health system, comparative effectiveness, public health intervention, obesity intervention, ageing and health, chronic disease, mental health, frontier technology: nanotechnology and health, emerging infectious disease threats, examining alternative therapy claims, and global health.

Key information about Project Grants is available on the NHMRC website. Applicants should direct all their inquiries to their RAO in the first instance. For further assistance, please contact the Research Help Centre either on 1800 500 983, or by email help@nhmrc.gov.au

Outcomes of NHMRC Project Grants – 2010 Funding Round

Project Grants, the NHMRC’s largest round of grants, were announced in November. This year saw a record number of applications received and a record number of applications funded. For a more detailed breakdown of Project Grants from the 2010 funding round please visit the NHMRC website.

Discussion paper – Advanced Health Research Centres

This discussion paper - Developing Advanced Health Research Centres in Australia - will be released for public consultation next week and will be available from the NHMRC website.

We are seeking comments on this strategy to build Australia’s capacity to undertake research and to translate knowledge acquired from research into improved patient care. The deadline for comments will be 5 March 2011.

Further information can be obtained by emailing pa.info@nhmrc.gov.au

Revised NHMRC funding agreement

Following extensive consultation with the health and medical research community, NHMRC has revised its funding agreement. NHMRC has provided this funding agreement to peak bodies today. Enquiries about the revised funding agreement should be made to pa.info@nhmrc.gov.au.

NHMRC Funding Calendar

The NHMRC funding calendar is available on the NHMRC website. Funding rounds for Centres of Research Excellence, Howard Florey Emeritus, Practitioner and Research Fellows and Project Grants are now open.

HoMER Update

• Under the Certification Scheme, institutional processes for ethical review at 29 Institutions have been certified and a further 13 Institutions have been issued with recommendations that require implementation before certification.

• The process of standardisation of forms (SoF) has recently been completed and were publicly released on 15 December 2010 on the NHMRC website.

• The frameworks for research governance and monitoring are currently being considered. A discussion paper Understanding Research Governance of Multi-centre Human Research 2010 is available for public consultation on the NHMRC website up until 25 February 2011.

• A discussion paper on the monitoring of research will be released in early 2011.

• An Indigenous research framework and a HoMER web portal are also under development.

• A separate newsletter providing information on HoMER is available from the NHMRC website.

For any additional enquiries contact (02) 6217 9213 or email homer@nhmrc.gov.au

Enhancing Peer Review Processes for 2011

Following feedback about the 2010 peer review process, we will in 2011:

• expand the NHMRC Academy;

• hold Assignment meetings with Academy members in Canberra;

• provide greater clarity on timeframes for assessments and applicant responses;

• form Grant Review Panels earlier; and

• provide better guidance to GRP and Academy members.

More detailed information will be available on the peer review process early in the new year.

Public consultation on Consensus-Based Clinical Practice Guideline for the Management of Volatile Substance Use

Consultation on Clinical Practice Guideline for the management of volatile substance use will close on Friday 14 January 2011. The Guideline is intended for use by health professionals when managing volatile substance use.

For information on how to make a submission, please visit the NHMRC website, or contact the Project Officer at NHMRC on 03 8866 0431.

Global Alliance for Chronic Diseases Request for Applications on Hypertension Prevention and Control - Preannouncement

The Global Alliance for Chronic Diseases (GACD) will be releasing a Request for Applications (RFA) on Implementation Research on Hypertension in Low and Middle Income Countries and in Indigenous Peoples in early 2011.

The focus of this RFA will be to improve the implementation of existing methods for hypertension prevention and control across a range of settings, rather than developing new treatments. Information can be found at: www.ga-cd.org or on the NHMRC website.

See full article...

November 2010

NHMRC Tracker – 26 November 2010

NHMRC Fellowships announcement

Mark Butler, Minister for Mental Health and Ageing has announced two hundred and ninety six researchers across Australia have been awarded National Health and Medical Research Council awards and fellowships beginning 2011 ($125.7 million). View Media Release.

NHMRC Funding Calendar

The NHMRC and ARC are working together to assist Research Offices in managing workloads and have sought to give as much time between the closing dates of their two largest schemes - Project Grants and Discovery Grants - as is practical.

The opening date for NHMRC Project Grant applications for funding commencing in 2012 will be Monday 13 December 2010 and the closing date is Tuesday 8 March 2011, 17:00 AEDT. View the NHMRC website for opening and closing dates of key funding schemes.

NHMRC anticipates releasing the Project Grants Funding Policy on 6 December 2011, which will enable applicants to review the policy in advance of the scheme's opening.

New Names for Early Career Awards

Several NHMRC Fellowships and Awards are to be renamed.

Early Career Fellowships and Postgraduate Scholarships are referred to collectively as ‘Early Career Awards’ (Formerly ‘Training Awards’). Named sub-categories for Early Career Awards will be re-introduced, and are outlined in the table on the NHMRC website. There are many sub-categories of award still unnamed, and names honouring significant contributors to Australian Health and Medical Research may be introduced in the future.

Revision to 2011 Policy for Research Fellows Nearing Retirement

The 2011 Research Fellowships Funding Policy for Funding in 2012 will contain a provision for current Fellows in their fifth year who intend to retire but remain research active to apply for a one-year extension of their current fellowship in their 5th year. Fellows will not be required to complete a full application for a new five- year award nor attend an interview. If successful, no further extension will be granted in addition to the one-year extension.

Referee Reports Process in RGMS: 2011 Application Round

Referee reports are a fundamental part of the Peer Review Process for the three Early Career Award (ECA) schemes and the TRIP Fellowships. For the 2011 funding rounds, referees will be able to submit their reports directly to NHMRC through RGMS to maintain confidentiality.

Cancer Australia

The NHMRC manages the registration and assessment of grant applications for the Priority-driven Collaborative Cancer Research Scheme. Applications for the 2011 round of the Priority-driven Collaborative Cancer Research Scheme will open in early December 2010. For further information on research priorities, visit www.canceraustralia.gov.au.

HoMER Update

Development of Harmonisation of Multi-centre Ethical Review (HoMER) has continued to progress through 2010. The process of standardisation of forms (SoF) is well progressed, and it is expected the developed participant information and consent forms and HREC letter templates will be finalised by the end of 2010.

The frameworks for research governance and monitoring are currently being considered. A research governance discussion paper will be released for public consultation in December 2010, and a discussion paper on the monitoring of research will be released in early 2011. An Indigenous research framework and a HoMER web portal are also under development. For questions regarding HoMER; (02) 6217 9213 or email homer@nhmrc.gov.au

Workshop: Research and Research Translation in Mental Health 2011

The next NHMRC workshop in the field of mental health - Research and Research Translation in Mental Health - will take place on 13 April 2011. A list of issues to be discussed can be found on the NHMRC website. Further details about this workshop will be provided in future edition of NHMRC Tracker.

Workshop: NHMRC Evidence in Primary Care 2010

On 10 November 2010 NHMRC held a Scientific Symposium and workshop on “Evidence into Primary Care – Research, research translation and improved outcomes for patients”. The outcomes from this workshop can be found on the NHMRC website. In addition, where permission has been received, presentations from the workshop can also be found on the NHMRC website.

Release of the Guidelines for the Screening, Prognosis, Diagnosis, Management and Prevention of Glaucoma

NHMRC has released the Guidelines for the Screening, Prognosis, Diagnosis, Management and Prevention of Glaucoma . Glaucoma is a chronic degenerative health problem and a leading cause of irreversible blindness worldwide. The Guidelines provide Australian health professionals with current best evidence and clear recommendations for the screening, prognosis, diagnosis, management and prevention of glaucoma. The Guidelines can be found on the NHMRC website.

See full article...

Tracker - 12 November 2010 edition

$447.5 Million Boost to Medical Research

Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Mark Butler today announced that 745 projects across Australia will be supported by NHMRC Project Grants, with funding of $408.7 million over three to five years. NHMRC received more than 3300 applications for these rounds, with an overall success rate of 23%.  

The Minister’s Media Release and more information about successful recipients can be found on the NHMRC website.

Independent research institutes will receive $38.8 million toward the indirect costs of health and medical research, through NHMRC Equipment and Infrastructure Grants.

75 icons of health and medical research

NHMRC is celebrating its 75th anniversary next year and is looking to showcase the achievements of not only NHMRC, but the Australian health and medical research community as a whole.  NHMRC are in the process of assembling a list of 75 icons in Australian health and medical research and we are seeking your views about people, ideas, discoveries and research centres that are deserving of recognition. A nomination form, including details of where to send you responses by November 19, 2010 is available here.

NHMRC 75th anniversary colloquium

The signature 75th anniversary event will be a Scientific Colloquium on 6 – 8 December 2011. The Colloquium will be a two and a half day event hosting some of Australia’s and the world’s most celebrated researchers. Information regarding this event will be provided in future editions of NHMRC Tracker.

Consensus-Based Clinical Practice Guideline for the Management of Volatile Substance Use

The draftconsensus-based Clinical Practice Guideline for the management of volatile substance use is now available for public consultation.  The Guideline is intended for use by health professionals when managing volatile substance use.  For information on how to make a submission, please visit the NHMRC website, or contact the Project Officer at NHMRC on 03 8866 0431. The closing date for submissions is Friday 14 January 2011.

NHMRC Australia Fellow wins The Ramaciotti Medal

2010 NHMRC Australia Fellow Professor Chris Goodnow has been awarded the Ramaciotti Medal for Excellence in Biomedical Research for his work on auto-immune diseases.  The annual award honours an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to clinical or biomedical research, or the way in which healthcare is delivered.  To listen to a podcast by Professor Goodnow,from the AustralianNational University, please visit the NHMRC website.

Re-issuing of the Joint Statement on vitamin K

NHMRC has re-issued the Joint statement and recommendations on vitamin K administration to newborn infants to prevent vitamin K deficiency bleeding in infancy. View the re-issued Joint statement on the NHMRC website.

See full article...

October 2010

NHMRC Tracker 29 October 2010

NHMRC - European Union Collaborative Research Grants

The NHMRC - European Union Collaborative Research Grants scheme assists Australian researchers to participate in projects with international researchers under the European Commission’s (EC) Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

Calls for proposals under FP7-HEALTH 2011 have been published by the EC and information is available on the CORDIS website.

Information about applying to FP7-HEALTH 2011 and the application form is available from the NHMRC website.

RGMS Update

For the latest update on RGMS please go to the NHMRC website.

Public Consultation: Proposed amendments to the National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research (2007).

The NHMRC is conducting a public consultation on proposed amendments to chapters 3.6 and 4.1 of the National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research (2007). You are invited to make a submission about either or both amendments. Full information for this public consultation and copies of the two chapters with the proposed changes included are available from the NHMRC website.

Workshop: Evidence into Primary Care – 10 November 2010

NHMRC is hosting a workshop on ‘Evidence into Primary Care – research, research translation and improved outcomes for patients’ on Wednesday 10 November 2010 in Canberra. The aim of the workshop is to advise NHMRC on how we can embed research and evidence into the provision of healthcare. To view the program please visit the NHMRC website. To register, please contact Ms Elizabeth Medley. Spaces are limited.

National Guidance on Collaborative Maternity Care

The National Guidance on Collaborative Maternity Care (2010), a document to provide information to women and maternity care clinicians about establishing and maintaining collaborative practice, is now available on the NHMRC website.

NHMRC National Information and Feedback Sessions

NHMRC CEO, Professor Warwick Anderson has visited several institutions in capital cities around Australia over the past month to hold information and feedback sessions.

NHMRC Annual report

The NHMRC 2009-10 Annual Report is available on the NHMRC website.

See full article...

NHMRC Tracker 15 October 2010

Australian Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of Infection in Healthcare (2010)

NHMRC’s Australian Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of Infection in Healthcare (2010) are now available on the NHMRC website.

The Guidelines support the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Healthcare’s work in preventing healthcare associated infections.

RGMS Update

RAO Training

Over the next two weeks NHMRC is holding RGMS training for Research Administration Officers (RAOs). The format will be half day sessions covering: navigation, managing awarded grants and improvements to the CV, profile and application forms. For more information regarding RGMS training please email the Research Help Centre.

Emergency Department Stroke and TIA Care Bundle (2009)

Following the release of the NHMRC Emergency Department Stroke and TIA Care Bundle (2009)  late last year, an editorial discussing the development of this innovative guideline implementation tool has been published in The Medical Journal of Australia. View the Editorial .

NHMRC National Information and Feedback Sessions

NHMRC CEO, Professor Warwick Anderson is visiting institutions in capital cities around Australia to hold information and feedback sessions. These sessions will outline NHMRC funding schemes, provide an opportunity to discuss NHMRC’s Strategic Plan and its implications for researchers, and outline NHMRC’s recent international initiatives. You can view his presentation on the NHMRC website.

Details for upcoming sessions:

WA

Universityof Western Australia
Date: Thursday, 21 October
Time: 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Location: Mary Lockett Theatre, QEII Medical Centre, Caladenia St, Nedlands
Registration: No registration required
 

NSW

University of Sydney - Westmead Campus
Date: Wednesday, 27 October, 2010
Time: 9:30-11:00am
Venue: Lecture Theatre 2, Education Block, Level 2, Westmead Hospital
Registration: Please RSVP your attendance by Monday, 25 October to Michelle Cameron on phone 9845 8938 or alternatively via email.

More Information and Feedback Sessions will be advertised in future editions of NHMRC Tracker and on the NHMRC website.

See full article...

NHMRC Tracker 1 October 2010

NHMRC National Information and Feedback Sessions

NHMRC CEO, Professor Warwick Anderson is visiting institutions in capital cities around Australia to hold information and feedback sessions. These sessions will outline NHMRC funding schemes, provide an opportunity to discuss NHMRC’s Strategic Plan and its implications for researchers, and outline NHMRC’s recent international initiatives.

This week Professor Anderson addressed researchers at Melbourne and Monash Universities, and the University of Adelaide. You can view his presentation on the NHMRC website.

Details for upcoming sessions:

NSW

University of New South Wales
Date: 12 October
Time: 10:00 am - 11:30 am
Location: Leighton Hall, John Niland Scientia Building, Kensington Campus
Registration: To register for this presentation use the e-form on the Grants Management Office website for UNSW

University of Sydney
Date: 12 October
Time: 2:30 pm - 4:00 pm
Location: The MacLaurin Hall, Main Quadrangle, University of Sydney
Registration: To register, please contact Ms Laura Wyatt: laura.wyatt@sydney.edu.au or 02 8627 8164

QLD

Institute of Molecular Biology
Date: 13 October
Time: 1:00 – 2:30pm
Location: QBI Auditorium, Queensland Brain Institute Building, 79 Upland Road, The University of Queensland - St Lucia Campus
Registration: No registration required

Queensland Institute of Medical Research
Date: 13 October
Time: 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Location: Westpac Auditorium, E Floor, The Bancroft Centre, QIMR
Registration: No registration required

WA

University of Western Australia
Date: 21 October
Time: 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Location: Mary Lockett Theatre, QEII Medical Centre, Caladenia St, Nedlands
Registration: TBC

Other locations to be confirmed in future editions of NHMRC Tracker.

Enhancing Peer Review

NHMRC has established a dedicated team to improve NHMRC’s administration of grant applications and associated processes. The team’s initial focus will be on improving our peer review processes and maximising the participation of the research community, particularly for the Project Grants Scheme.

All feedback from researchers and panel members who participated in this year’s peer review process will be collated and reviewed in order to make improvements for 2011. It is also a great opportunity for us to build on the experience of hosting Grant Review Panels in the Canberra office throughout August and September.

Centres of Research Excellence

NHMRC's Research Committee recently considered the draft 2010 Centres of Research Excellence (CRE) Funding Policy.

A call for applications for the 2010 CRE round, for funding commencing in 2011, is expected in late November. Applications are expected to close in late February or early March 2011. Further information on the scheme's opening and closing dates will be provided in future editions of both NHMRC Tracker and RGMS Update.

RGMS Update

RGMS unavailable during October

We remind you that RGMS will not be available during October. As advised in previous editions of NHMRC Tracker we have been working to improve software, hardware and databases within RGMS. This work also includes importing data for all current grants from NHMRC's previous system, RMIS (Research Management Information System).

Following the upgrades, users will see a number of improvements, including simplified application forms (when schemes open), re-formatted pages, additional help information via 'hover text', and the ability for grant holders and RAOs to manage awarded grants.

We apologise for any inconvenience. If you require more information please send an email to the Research Help Centre on 1800 500 983 or help@nhmrc.gov.au.

RGMS Testers

NHMRC would like extend a thank you to those that are currently helping NHMRC to test the improvements we have made to RGMS. Your work is greatly appreciated. We would like to also like to take this opportunity to remind testers that the test environment will only be available for one more week, closing on 8 October 2010.

See full article...

September 2010

NHMRC Tracker 17 September 2010

RGMS Update

RGMS unavailable during October

We remind you that RGMS will not be available during October. NHMRC will be updating software, hardware, databases and implementing changes throughout October. This includes importing data for all current grants from NHMRC's previous system, RMIS (Research Management Information System).

Following the upgrades, users will see a number of improvements, including simplified application forms (when schemes open), re-formatted pages, additional help information via 'hover text', and the ability for grant holders and RAOs to manage awarded grants.

NHMRC is currently reviewing feedback from the 2010 peer review process to prioritise further improvements to support peer review during the 2011 funding round.

RGMS Training and User Testing

NHMRC is offering training for RAOs from all Administering Institutions during the last two weeks of October. The format will be half-day sessions covering changes to navigation, managing awarded grants, and improvements to the CV, profile and application forms. Places are available (and NHMRC will cover the cost of flights) for one person from each Administering Institution. More places are available should institutions wish to send additional RAO staff. For more information, please contact the Research Help Centre.

NHMRC is also engaging a number of users (both RAOs and researchers) in road-testing the RGMS improvements before they are finalised.

NHMRC National Information and Feedback Sessions

NHMRC CEO, Professor Warwick Anderson will be visiting Australian Universities and Medical Research Institutes in the coming months to conduct a number of NHMRC information and feedback sessions. These sessions will outline NHMRC funding schemes, provide an opportunity to discuss NHMRC’s Strategic Plan and its implications for researchers, and outline NHMRC’s recent international initiatives.

The first session will be held on September 29 at Melbourne University at 10am and Monash University at 2:30pm, then Adelaide (October 1), Sydney (October 12), Brisbane (October 13) and others to be confirmed.

Blood lead levels

Lead continues to be a health issue for children in Mt Isa, Queensland and Port Pirie, SA. NHMRC’s Public Statement on Blood Lead Levels for Australians provides helpful information on when lead exposure, reflected in blood lead levels, becomes of concern and recommends ways to reduce the risks of lead exposure.

NHMRC podcasts

NHMRC will continue with its popular podcast interviews with eminent scientists discussing leading health and medical research later this year. Next to be featured will be scientists working on projects chosen for this year’s NHMRC 10 of the Best Research Projects publication.

You can find podcasts covering all of the 2010 NHMRC Australia Fellows on the NHMRC website, including interviews with Professor Michael Good AO speaking about developing vaccines for malaria and rheumatic fever, Professor John Mattick discussing Noncoding RNA, and Professor Shaun Jackson on preventing heart disease and stroke.

See full article...

NHMRC Tracker 03 September 2010

Development Grants - timeline update

The Development Grants peer review timeline has been altered to accommodate upgrades to NHMRC’s Research Grants Management System (RGMS). Following initial peer review of applications, applicants will be able to provide a response to this initial assessment in mid September. Once applicants have submitted their rebuttal, all applications will undergo final assessment.

RGMS Update

System development and availability in October 2010

NHMRC is now carrying out improvements to the Research Grants Management System (RGMS) that have been identified since its implementation late last year. These include enhancements to software, hardware and databases to ensure RGMS performance when funding rounds open later this year. Between now and the end of September NHMRC will be installing and testing the upgrades in our test environment, inclusive of improvements to application forms and CV management. We then plan to use the month of October to upgrade our production environment. RGMS is not expected to be available to users during October. Please contact the Research Help Centre if you feel that that the change to availability may impact on you or your institution.

NHMRC response to feedback

NHMRC thanks RGMS users and the research community for feedback about the operation of RGMS. NHMRC has been collecting and analysing feedback and suggestions from users since the beginning of the year and is implementing a staged approach to making improvements to the system.

The current stage, outlined above, includes improvements to simplify and streamline the application process. The next stage, to be completed by March 2011, will implement improvements to how RGMS supports the assessment and grant review panel processes, and we are currently gathering feedback from grant review panel members.

Consultation and Communication

As well as changes to our IT capacity and configuration, we have implemented a number of communication and consultation changes.

NHMRC has been working with its RGMS User Reference Group (RURG) to finalise improvements to snapshots and will shortly be seeking RURG advice on peer review aspects of RGMS. We are also reviewing our website pages, user support and FAQ information, which will be integrated into our new Research Help Centre. NHMRC will be asking some researchers and Research Administration Officers to help with testing the improvements to RGMS and providing training for Research Administration Officers in October 2010.

As our reviews are completed, we will publish the results on our website and through our fortnightly electronic newsletter RGMS Update. If you would like to receive RGMS Update, please email the Research Help Centre.

NHMRC CEO Information and Feedback Sessions

During September and October, Professor Warwick Anderson is planning a series of Information and Feedback Sessions in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth to outline NHMRC funding schemes, to discuss NHMRC’s Strategic Plan and its implications for researchers, and to outline NHMRC’s recent international initiatives. Further information will be provided in the next NHMRC Tracker.

Clinical Guidelines for Stroke Management (2010)

NHMRC has recently approved Clinical Guidelines for Stroke Management (2010) developed by the National Stroke Foundation (NSF). This guideline is an update and amalgamation of the two previously NHMRC approved guidelines developed by the NSF: Clinical Guidelines for Acute Stroke Management (2007) and Clinical Guidelines for Stroke Rehabilitation and Recovery (2005).

This guideline reflects the need for acute and post acute services to provide seamless care to those with stroke and their families. It can be accessed from the National Stroke Foundation at www.strokefoundation.com.au and on the NHMRC website.

Women in Science Awards

NHMRC is proud to have supported two health and medical researchers whose work in malaria and breast cancer research was recognised by their 2010 L'Oreal Women in Science Fellowships. The NHMRC supported recipients are:

Rowena Martin of ANU, an NHMRC Biomedical Fellow working in the fight against malaria; and

Marie-Liesse Asselin-Labat of the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, who has participated in NHMRC-funded research into breast cancer.

View more information on the Women in Science website.

See full article...

August 2010

NHMRC Tracker 20 August 2010

Development Grants 2010

The Development Grants 2010 round closed on 14 July, with 91 applications submitted. The scheme has entered into the initial stages of the peer review process. Applicants will be provided with information about submitting rebuttals to the initial review of their applications in early September. Outcomes are expected to be announced in early 2011.

NHMRC Research Funding Facts Book 2010

NHMRC has recently released the NHMRC Research Funding Facts Book 2010 which contains key statistics related to NHMRC’s research funding and research activity over the last ten years. It reflects NHMRC’s commitment to collecting, reporting and increasing the understanding of health and medical research funding in Australia.

Australia Fellow podcast series: Professor Nigel Bunnett - New approaches for treating chronic inflammation and plain

In this podcast, 2010 Australia Fellow Professor Nigel Bunnett talks about his work researching chronic inflammatory diseases - arthritis, asthma, inflammatory bowel disease and cardiovascular diseases related to obesity and diabetes. Professor Bunnett will be taking up his Australia Fellowship at the University of Sydney later this year. His aim is to investigate the basic mechanisms that underlie indicators of inflammation and pain, and hopefully identify new approaches to therapy.

See full article...

NHMRC Tracker 06 August 2010

Grant Review Panel Update

The review of the 2010 Project Grant application has commenced and the following six GRPs met in the NHMRC’s offices in Canberra for the first time this week;

  • Biochemistry
  • Oncology 1
  • Oncology 2 - Cancer Biology (inc Haematology)
  • Oncology 3 - Cancer Biology - signalling
  • Oncology 4 - Clinical Cancer
  • Genetics

Over the next five weeks, NHMRC will host a further 29 GRPs.

2010 Centres of Research Excellence Scheme – Update on opening of scheme

As previously decided, the call for applications under the Centres of Research Excellence scheme be delayed. Additional information will be provided in a future edition of NHMRC Tracker.

Potential applicants are encouraged to obtain a login for the Research Grants Management System (RGMS) if they do not already have one, and complete their profile on the system.

Medical and Dental Postgraduate Research Scholarships - Proposed Changes

NHMRC is aware of issues with the Medical and Dental Postgraduate Research Scholarship category for applicants undertaking combined graduate medical and PhD degree programs and is considering some changes to this scheme. Proposed changes will be outlined in a future edition of NHMRC Tracker.

NHMRC CEO Newsletter

The next edition of the CEO newsletter is now available on the NHMRC website. In his newsletter, Professor Warwick Anderson AM discusses the NHMRC Strategic Plan, provides a progress report on Project Grant application assessments in the 2010 round, and an update on the Research Grants Management System (RGMS), and looks at Advanced Health Care Centres.

Health Care Committee activities

At its recent meeting, NHMRC’s Health Care Committee established three new working groups to start to address genomic technologies, complementary and alternative medicines, and regenerative medicine as part of NHMRC’s activities on the major health issues outlined in our Strategic Plan 2010-2012. Further information on these activities will be outlined in a future edition of NHMRC Tracker.

Global Alliance for Chronic Disease - Request for Expressions of Interest to host the Secretariat

The Global Alliance for Chronic Disease (GACD) is a global health initiative whose purpose is to coordinate research activities addressing the prevention and treatment of chronic disease.

The GACD Board is calling for Expressions of Interest from public, academic or not-for-profit institutions interested in hosting the GACD Secretariat. The successful institution will be responsible for providing the administrative and physical framework for the Secretariat’s operations. Further information and application details can be found on the GACD website.

Expressions of interest are to be submitted via email to Dr Richele Rasmussen by COB Tuesday September 14, 2010.

Australia Fellow podcast series: Professor Michael Good AO – in pursuit of vaccines for malaria and rheumatic fever

In this podcast, NHMRC Australia Fellow Professor Michael Good AO of Griffith University discusses his research into developing vaccines for malaria and rheumatic fever, and how the Fellowship will allow his team to conduct clinical trials for both diseases.

See full article...

July 2010

NHMRC Tracker 23 July 2010

Clinical Research Statistics

In the 2009 grant application round, 197 Project Grants in the broad research area of clinical medicine were funded by NHMRC with a total funding commitment of nearly $114 million; representing 29% of all Project Grants funded.

Six Clinical Program Grants were funded in 2009, with a total funding commitment of $104 million, which represents 60% of the total Program Grant commitment. There were also 16 new Practitioner Fellows appointed.

NHMRC is supporting the CRX10 Clinical Research Excellence Meeting 2010, August 5 - 6. For more information visit http://www.crxconference.com.

Upcoming CEO Newsletter

The next edition of the CEO newsletter will be available on the NHMRC website next week. In his newsletter, Professor Warwick Anderson will discuss the NHMRC Strategic Plan, provide a progress report on Program Grant application assessments in the 2010 round, an update on the Research Grants Management System (RGMS), and look at Advanced Health Care Centres.

RGMS Update - email newsletter for RGMS users

NHMRC has launched a new email newsletter targeted to registered users of our Research Grants Management System (RGMS). RGMS Update will include important information on business processes, system improvements and critical dates. You can view the fist edition on the NHMRC website.

Australia Fellow podcast series: Improving the accuracy of cancer radiation treatment

In this podcast, Associate Professor Paul Keall talks about how his 2010 NHMRC Australia Fellowship work will focus on maximising the amount of radiation delivered to tumours while minimising damage to surrounding tissue.

See full article...

NHMRC Tracker 09 July 2010

2010 Development Grants Scheme – applications closing 14 July

NHMRC wishes to remind applicants and Research Administration Officers that applications for the 2010 Development Grants Scheme close at 5pm (AEST) on 14 July 2010. Late applications will not be accepted. All applications must be submitted online via NHMRC’s Research Grants Management System (RGMS).

Any RGMS related queries may be directed to the Research Help Centre on 1800 500 983 or help@nhmrc.gov.au.

Policy related queries may be directed to development.grants@nhmrc.gov.au.

2010 Centres of Research Excellence Scheme – changed date of opening for applications

The call for applications for the 2010 Centres of Research Excellence Scheme round will not open on the scheduled date of 9 July 2010 for technical reasons. The new opening date is expected next month and details will be provided in the next edition of Tracker.

All applications for the scheme will need to be submitted online through the NHMRC’s Research Grants Management System (RGMS). Potential applicants are encouraged to obtain a login for RGMS, if they do not already have one, and commence filling in their profile on the system.

To access RGMS, please visit www.rgms.nhmrc.gov.au.

RGMS Update

New email newsletter for RGMS users

As part of our ongoing commitment to providing high quality, timely communication with our stakeholders, NHMRC will shortly launch a new email newsletter targeted for RGMS users. The newsletter will include important information on business processes, system improvements and critical dates.

Australian Guideline Developers Network

The Australian Guideline Developers Network is designed to facilitate peer support and the sharing of knowledge between Australian guideline developers. The Network is open to developers and funders of clinical practice guidelines for use at local, state and national levels. If you would like to join the network and keep up-to-date on its activities please contact the Guidelines Research Program, clinicalguidelines@nhmrc.gov.au.

2010 Australia Fellow podcast series: Investigating new treatment methods for heart disease and stroke

When most people think of blood clotting they think of the positive effects, stopping bleeding. However, NHMRC Australia Fellow Professor Shaun Jackson from Monash University in Victoria is working on the negatives, clots that cause heart disease and stroke.

In this podcast, Professor Jackson talks about his investigations into the mechanical factors that influence blood clotting in diseased arteries, and how this may lead to new treatments.


See full article...

June 2010

NHMRC Tracker 25 June 2010

RGMS Update

Helpdesk

Communicating with our key stakeholders is more important than ever, so over the coming weeks NHMRC will introduce a new help facility. The new Research Help Centre will be a 'one stop shop', providing timely advice and friendly, professional assistance across a variety of areas including RGMS access, using RGMS, funding scheme and peer review policies, guidelines, and application support.

We will be providing more detailed information shortly, including phone numbers and e-mail address. In the meantime, please continue to use the current contact arrangements:

Phone: 1800 500 983
e-mail: grantnet.help@nhmrc.gov.au

Rebuttals

The Project Grant application external assessments are being lodged in RGMS and we will shortly be inviting Chief Investigators to read the assessments and submit their rebuttals. A key requirement in RGMS is that the rebuttal be submitted by Chief Investigator A. Detailed instructions will be sent to applicants by e-mail over the next two weeks.

Grants Administration

The development of the grant administration functionality of RGMS is progressing and it is expected that RAO’s and grant holders will be given access in early November 2010. This will allow RAO’s, Finance Officers and grant holders to manage grants on-line, including grant variations (transfers, extensions, deferrals etc), and scientific and financial reporting.

In recognition of the significant changes RGMS will have on how grants are managed, NHMRC will be providing training courses, for RAO’s and Finance Officers, in Canberra during October. Further details on this training and other aspects of RGMS will be provided via email in the coming weeks.

Developing a more evidence-based mental health system

NHMRC is hosting a workshop on ‘Developing a more evidence-based mental health system’ on Wednesday 28 July 2010, from 10-4pm at the Academy of Science Shine Dome, Canberra. The aim of the workshop is to advise NHMRC on future activities in mental health.

To register, please contact Ms Donna Brennan. Spaces are limited.

2010 Australia Fellow podcast series: Combining therapies to combat cancer

In this podcast, Professor Mark Smyth of the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne talks about his work in cancer immunology. Professor Smyth and his team are building on our understanding of how the immune system reacts to cancer, and investigating how combining conventional therapies like radiotherapy, chemotherapy with immunotherapy could have positive outcomes for cancer patients.

See full article...

NHMRC Tracker 11 June 2010

RGMS Update


RGMS upgrades

Since February this year, NHMRC has been working to make improvements to RGMS to better support our peer review processes and the 2011 funding round. We recently installed a larger capacity server for RGMS and are continuing to monitor and improve its performance. Further improvements to the underlying infrastructure supporting RGMS are being planned for the second half of 2010.

Over the last six months, NHMRC has received significant feedback on RGMS, and with the help of the RGMS User Reference Group and focus groups, will consolidate this feedback to determine what changes to RGMS functions will be implemented for the 2011 funding rounds. These changes will be finalised by the end of June in order to be implemented and user tested by the end of the year.

If you have any additional comments or suggestions we would be happy to consider them. You can talk to your local User Reference Group member, send an e-mail to RGMS@nhmrc.gov.au or use the feedback form on the NHMRC website.

Members of the RGMS User Reference Group are:

Chair: Professor Ian Smith (Monash University)
Prof. Matt Gillespie (Prince Henry's Institute)
A/Prof. Amanda Thrift (Research Committee member)
Prof. Marshall Lightowlers (University of Melbourne)
Prof. Carol Armour (University of Sydney)
Prof. Phil Beart (Howard Florey Institute)
Prof. Christine Clarke (University of Sydney)
Prof. Alison Venn (University of Tasmania)
Prof. Prue Hart (Institute for Child Health Research)


RGMS Focus Groups

NHMRC would like to thank everyone who volunteered to participate in focus groups - we have had a great response and will be bringing the focus groups together in the coming weeks. At this stage, NHMRC intends on running further focus groups later in 2010.

2010 - 2011 Postgraduate Scholarships

Advice and Instructions for Applicants has been updated and posted on the NHMRC website.

The updated document is also located in the ‘Knowledge Store’ section of RGMS.

Changes have been made to clarify several items, especially in relation to 'Referee Report' requirements.

The Australian Research Integrity Committee (ARIC)

ARIC is being jointly established by NHMRC and the Australian Research Council (ARC) as a national advisory body that will review processes by which universities and other research organisations have handled allegations of research misconduct. Expressions of interest for membership of ARIC closed on 28 May 2010 with 48 applications received. NHMRC and ARC are currently reviewing applications.

National Certification Scheme

The NHMRC assessment team has completed 11 on-site visits with Institutions seeking certification of their ethical review processes under the National Certification Scheme.

2010 Australia Fellow podcast series: Exploring the immune system’s first lines of defence

In this podcast, Professor Francis Carbone, a 2010 NHMRC Australia Fellow, tells Carolyn Norrie about his work studying the immune system’s first lines of defence – the skin, gastrointestinal and respiratory tracts - and understanding how we can stop infections at these sites before a microbe gets in and starts to fester within the body.

See full article...

May 2010

NHMRC Tracker 28 May 2010

NHMRC Strategic Plan for 2010 - 2012

The NHMRC Strategic Plan for 2010-2012 has been tabled in Parliament (25 May) and released on the NHMRC website. The key objectives of the Plan, reflecting the National Health and Medical Research Council Act 1992, are to:

  1. Raise the standard of individual and public health throughout Australia.
  2. Foster the development of consistent health standards between the various States and Territories.
  3. Foster medical research and training and public health research and training throughout Australia.
  4. Foster consideration of ethical issues relating to health.

The Plan also sets out the NHMRC’s strategy for health and medical research, which can be summarised as:

  • creating knowledge—by investing in research most likely to yield new knowledge through independent research initiated by talented, well trained researchers.
  • translating knowledge—by supporting funding schemes that help ensure research findings flow into improved policy and practice.
  • building capacity to undertake research—by supporting, renewing and widening Australia’s pool of talented new researchers, from early training through to their most productive years.
  • being a good international citizen—contributing to the development of health knowledge worldwide and improving health in our region through international research activities.
  • evolving peer review—seeking to achieve the highest quality decision making through peer review.

Read the full NHMRC Strategic Plan for 2010-2012 on the NHMRC website.

RGMS Update

RGMS User Reference Group

Membership of NHMRC's RGMS User Reference Group (RURG) is being finalised and includes:

  • Prof. Ian Smith (Chair, Monash University)
  • Prof. Matt Gillespie (Research Committee member)
  • A/Prof. Amanda Thrift (Research Committee member)
  • Prof. Marshall Lightowlers (University of Melbourne)
  • Prof. Carol Armour (University of Sydney)
  • Prof. Phil Beart (Howard Florey Institute)
  • Prof. Christine Clarke (University of Sydney)
  • Prof. Alison Venn (University of Tasmania)
  • Prof. Prue Hart (Institute for Child Health Research, WA)

RGMS Focus Groups

Additional members may be appointed over the next couple of weeks. A key role for the RURG will be to link with the research community to help advise NHMRC on the key improvements to be made to RGMS that will improve the submission of applications and peer review.

NHMRC is calling for volunteers for a number of RGMS focus groups. These will cover three main areas:

  • Research Administration Officers
  • applicants and people involved in peer review of research support grants (for example project or program grants)
  • applicants and people involved in peer review of people support grants (for example fellowships)

NHMRC will be convening these focus groups in June to gather further information to inform our work in improving RGMS for 2011. If you are interested in participating in a focus group, please email us. We will establish the focus groups to achieve a balance of institutions, gender and States and Territories.

RGMS Post-Award Functions

RGMS has been designed to include the whole lifecycle of grant management, from application, through peer review and awarding of grants, to payments, management of variations and reporting. NHMRC is currently finalising the "post-award" functions of RGMS, which will include functions that allow grant holders and RAOs to manage their grants online. These functions will become available in October 2010. Prior to these functions becoming available to users, NHMRC will run information and training sessions for RAOs and Finance Officers in all administering institutions. More details will be provided shortly.

Standardisation of Forms Consultation

The Harmonisation of Multi-centre Ethical Review (HoMER) Standardisation of Forms Consultation pack was released today, Friday 28 May 2010. You can find the consultation on the NHMRC website.

Submissions are due by 5:00 pm AEST Friday 2 July 2010.

Australia Fellow podcast: Is diet behind asthma’s rise in western society?

2010 NHMRC Australia Fellow Professor Charles Mackay believes a connection between the immune and metabolic systems might be causing the increase in certain inflammatory diseases such as asthma in western countries. He explains in this podcast.
 

See full article...

NHMRC Tracker 14 May 2010

NHMRC Budget Statement

To view the NHMRC’s 2010 Budget Statement, see the NHMRC website.

Panel members for the Australian Research Integrity Committee

The Australian Research Integrity Committee is being jointly established by NHMRC and the Australian Research Council as a national advisory body to review processes by which universities and other research organisations have handled allegations of research misconduct.

Expressions of interest for the positions of Chair or committee member are due by COB 28 May 2010. The panel selection criteria and duties statement are available from the NHMRC website

Further questions can be directed to Dr Timothy Dyke on 02 6217 9000.

Evidence into Primary Care Workshop

As part of our ongoing Workshop series, NHMRC will be holding a workshop in the second half of 2010 to explore the issues around the translation of evidence into primary care. Further details about this workshop will be provided in a future edition of Tracker.

RGMS Reference Group

NHMRC has established an external RGMS User Reference Group, to be chaired by Professor Ian Smith from Monash University, to provide NHMRC with advice on issues relating to RGMS use by the research community. The Reference Group will provide a strong conduit between the research community and the NHMRC, in the development and roll out of RGMS to improve the submission of applications, peer review, and reporting.

Release of Medical Genetic Testing: information for health professionals

NHMRC will shortly release Medical Genetic Testing: information for health professionals, to support health professionals to assist patients considering genetic testing, order the appropriate genetic test, interpret results, and provide follow-up care to the patient and family. The Information Paper will be available on the NHMRC website.

Australian Clinical Guidelines – A National Study

Dr Heather Buchan and colleagues at NHMRC’s National Institute of Clinical Studies have recently published a national study of clinical practice guidelines. The study found 313 Australian clinical practice guidelines were produced between 2003 and 2007 for use at national and state levels. It reports on their key characteristics including health topic, evidence documentation, funding source, and documentation of conflict of interest. This work has led the development of the new NHMRC Clinical Practice Guidelines Portal to make Australian clinical practice guidelines more accessible.

Australian clinical practice guidelines - a national study. Heather A Buchan, Kay C Currie, Emma J Lourey and Geraint R Duggan. Med J Aust 2010; 192 (9): 490-494

NHMRC Reports

Current arrangements for reporting for NHMRC grants, including information on Progress, Mid Term and Final Reports, are now available from the NHMRC website.

2010 Australia Fellow podcast series: The immune system – friend or foe?

In this podcast, Professor Chris Goodnow explains how his Australia Fellowship will enable him to shed some light on why our immune system sometimes attacks a healthy part of the body, by investigating the genetic differences between people with autoimmune disease and those without.


See full article...

April 2010

NHMRC Tracker 30 April 2010

2010 Development Grant Scheme call for applications – date change

The call for applications for the 2010 Development Grants Scheme round will now open 5 May and close 14 July 2010.

All applications are to be submitted online through the NHMRC’s Research Grants Management System (RGMS). Potential applicants are encouraged to obtain a login for RGMS, if they do not already have one, and commence filling in their profile on the system. To access RGMS please visit www.rgms.nhmrc.gov.au.

Project Grants - Peer Review and Research Grants Management System (RGMS)

For information about peer review of 2010 Project Grant applications please visit the NHMRC website.

Australian Guideline Developers Network

NHMRC’s National Institute of Clinical Studies are convening the first of a planned series of workshops in Melbourne in June for guideline developers. This will be the first opportunity for the newly established Australian Guideline Developers Network to meet as a group. The Network has been established to provide a forum for exploring common issues, sharing knowledge and supporting collaboration in guideline development.

If you are interested in joining the Network and/or attending the workshop, please contact Annabelle Workman on (03) 8866 0444 or via email.

Workshop: ‘Global Health – addressing the health needs of the Asia/Pacific region’

NHMRC is hosting a workshop on ‘Global Health – addressing the health needs of the Asia/Pacific region’ on Tuesday 25th May, from 9am-5pm at the NHMRC office in Canberra. This scientific and policy workshop is part of the NHMRC’s consultation process, promoting discussion around the health issues facing our region and how best to address them. The workshop will showcase NHMRC funded research in this area, followed by a roundtable discussion. If you wish to register, please contact Ms Sarah Busby. Spaces are limited.

Podcast: NHMRC Newscast April 2010

Monthly podcast summary of NHMRC’s latest events and announcements.

In this Newscast:

  • NHMRC calls for Development Grant applications
  • the country spends $4 million on a tri-nation research effort to help close the gap in Indigenous health
  • and Australia’s new research integrity body on the lookout for committee members.

See full article...

NHMRC Tracker 16 April 2010

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NHMRC websites & RGMS temporarily down for maintenance - Saturday 24 April

All NHMRC websites, including RGMS, will be offline from 7:00 am - 11:00 pm on Saturday 24 April 2010 due to scheduled system maintenance by our internet provider.

For RGMS enquiries contact: 1800 500 983
For media enquiries contact: 0422 008 512

We apologise for any inconvenience.

2010 NHMRC Development Grants

Call for applications for the 2010 funding round of NHMRC Development Grant Scheme will open on 28 April and close on 2 July 2010.  The 2010 Funding Policy will be available when the Scheme opens.

All applications are to be submitted on-line through NHMRC’s RGMS. To gain access to RGMS, please visit www.rgms.nhmrc.gov.au and click on new user request.

Planning for Partnership Centres initiative underway

NHMRC is currently developing an implementation plan for the Partnerships for Better Health Centres of Research Excellence initiative.

This program will establish a limited number of collaborative centres of excellence in specific areas of health care practice and policy.

Arrangements for establishing the Partnership Centres Initiative are not yet finalised. It is anticipated that a consultative process modelled on establishing National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Scheme-like capabilities will be used.

Human Frontier Science Program’s (HFSP) Intergovernmental Conference

A reminder that on May 27 and 28, 2010, the NHMRC is hosting the Human Frontier Science Program’s (HFSP) Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) in Canberra. HFSP supports novel, innovative, and interdisciplinary basic research focused on the complex mechanisms of living organisms.

In conjunction with the IGC, NHMRC is holding a ‘Scientific Session’ at the Shine Dome, Canberra, on the morning of Thursday 27 May to showcase the achievements of Australian researchers supported by the HFSP.

This is a unique opportunity to hear about outstanding cutting edge research that is stretching the frontiers of health and medical research. Places are limited at this free session. If you are interested in attending this event, please RSVP by late April 2010 to Sarah Busby.

Expressions of interest - Australian Research Integrity Committee

Following Minister Carr's announcement, NHMRC and ARC have called for expressions of interest for membership to the Australian Research Integrity Committee.

You can find further information on the NHMRC website.

Nutrition blog live on NHMRC Nutrition Subsite

The NHMRC Nutrition Portal Subsite now hosts a nutrition blog. The blog is intended to encourage dialogue and exchange of ideas on the overall revision of the Dietary Guidelines, on documents released for consultation and other nutrition topics.

To register and post comments, go to the NHMRC website.

Public consultation: Draft A new food guidance system for Australia – Foundation and Total Diets

The draft publication A new food guidance system for Australia – Foundation and Total Diets was released for public comment on 27 March 2010.  The public consultation has been extended until Monday 10 May 2010.

NHMRC is seeking comments on this document from interested organisations and individuals.

Public consultation:  Critical Bleeding/Massive Transfusion Module of the Patient Blood Management Guidelines

Public consultation is now open for Critical Bleeding/Massive Transfusion Module of the Patient Blood Management Guidelines (the draft Guidelines).  This is the first of six modules developed by the National Blood Authority to replace the NHMRC/ASBT Clinical Practice Guidelines on Fresh Blood Components (2001).

The draft Guidelines cover the management of patients with critical bleeding who require or are likely to require massive transfusion.

Public consultation will close 14 May 2010. The draft Guidelines and technical report (two volumes) is available from the National Blood Authority website.

Completion of Suite of Guidelines on Arthritis

The last in a suite of four NHMRC approved Arthritis Guidelines, the Clinical Guideline for the Prevention and Treatment of Osteoporosis in Postmenopausal Women and Older Men have been released by the Royal Australian College of General Practioners.

Podcast: Noncoding RNA – genetic junk or jewel?

Most of the DNA we inherit from our parents was believed to be accumulated evolutionary debris. But 2010 NHMRC Australia Fellow, Professor John Mattick, believes it is an RNA-driven information system critical to human development.

In this podcast, Prof Mattick explains how the Australia Fellowship is helping him pursue his alternative hypothesis.

See full article...

NHMRC Tracker 1 April 2010

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CEO Research Newsletter

Professor Warwick Anderson’s March 2010 Research Newsletter has been released.  Issues covered include:

  • RGMS update
  • Identifying transformative research ideas – the new NHMRC Marshall and Warren Project Grant Awards
  • Women in health and medical research
  • Measuring up: Bibliometric analysis of Australian Health and Medical Research
  • Emeritus NHMRC Fellowships
  • New Frontiers – growing NHMRC support for fundamental research
  • Ideas for improving leadership in patient care, research and translational education.

RGMS Statistics

Through RGMS this year, NHMRC has received 85 Centres of Research Excellence grant applications, 219 Research Fellowships applications (213 last year), 30 Practitioner Fellowships applications (40 last year), and 3,344 Project Grant applications (3110 last year). All these schemes have closed and peer review is under way.

Career Development Award Fellowship applications close on Monday 12 April 2010 and currently 509 applications are being prepared in RGMS. This is a sizeable increase on the 434 applications received in 2009, of which only 54 (12%) applications were successful.

By 31 March, 6,990 researchers have a Profile/CV in RGMS.

Feedback and comment on RGMS is invited help@nhmrc.gov.au.

NHMRC Career Development Awards – reminder of extended closing date

Applications for NHMRC Career Development Awards close on 12 April 2010. The original close date was extended from 31 March 2010 to assist RAOs and researchers to complete their internal administrative processes in this first year of the new NHMRC Research Grants Management System (RGMS).

Further information on the scheme can be found on the NHMRC website.

NHMRC Partnership Projects & Training (Postdoctoral) Fellowships – extended closing dates

Government Departments, including NHMRC in Canberra, will have no access to the internet on Saturday, 24 April from 3am – 11pm.   This means that there will be no access by applicants to RGMS.

Therefore, NHMRC has extended the closing date for NHMRC Partnership Projects and for Training (Postdoctoral) Fellowships until close of business (5.00pm AEST) Monday 3 May 2010.

NHMRC removes journal impact factors from peer review

On the recommendation of NHMRC Research Committee, NHMRC will be removing requests for journal impact factors from all applications for NHMRC grant funding, including project and program grants and research fellowships.

For an article providing further discussion on this issue, see the NHMRC website.

Draft National Guidance on Collaborative Maternity Care - Public Consultation

NHMRC has developed a draft National Guidance on Collaborative Maternity Care.  The Guidance aims to assist midwives and other clinicians improve how they collaborate and maintain appropriate arrangements in maternity care.

Comments are now invited. The consultation period runs until 27 April 2010 and information on how to make a submission can be found on the NHMRC website.

Coming soon: Australia Fellows – on the cutting edge of research

Beginning with next fortnight’s Tracker, NHMRC presents a brand new series of podcast interviews: the 2010 Australia Fellows.

While you’re waiting, catch up on any podcasts or vodcasts you’ve missed from our podcast index page.

See or hear:

  • Professor Ian Frazer at the National Press Club talking about research careers (vodcast)
  • the WHO’s Dr Jamie Bartram on water quality and the developing world’s thirst
  • Professor James Best on researchers’ conflicts of interest

… and much, much more. Catch up now.

See full article...

March 2010

NHMRC Tracker 19 March 2010

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NHMRC Career Development Awards – deadline extension

NHMRC wishes to advise RAOs and applicants that the closing date for applications for Career Development Awards (CDAs) has been extended from Wednesday 31 March 2010, Midnight AEST to Monday 12 April 2010, 5pm AEST.

This extension has been Hometo assist RAOs and researchers in this first year of the new NHMRC Research Grants Management System (RGMS) to complete their internal administrative processes.

Further information can be found on the NHMRC website.

Project Grant applications - Grant Review Panels in 2010

NHMRC wishes to thank all those researchers who have indicated their willingness and availability to participate on the Grant Review Panels for Project Grants in 2010.

NHMRC will be finalising the GRP membership for Project Grant applications in mid April and we will contact researchers about their appointments to a GRP after that time.

Any queries on GRP membership, please email grp.membership@nhmrc.gov.au

CEO Newsletter

Professor Warwick Anderson’s next CEO newsletter will be released on Friday 26 March on the NHMRC website. The issues will include:

  • RGMS update
  • Identifying transformative research ideas – the new NHMRC Marshall and Warren Project Grant Awards
  • Women in health and medical research
  • Measuring up: Bibliometric analysis of Australian Health and Medical Research
  • Emeritus NHMRC Fellowships
  • New Frontiers – growing NHMRC support for fundamental research
  • Ideas for improving leadership in patient care, research and translational education.

NHMRC Bibliometric Report

An independent bibliometric study conducted by the Australian National University (ANU) has shown that research projects funded by NHMRC have citation rates well above the Australian average.

NHMRC funded research accounts for a significant number of the country’s most highly cited journal articles with 2.4 per cent of NHMRC supported research outputs in the top one per cent of the most highly cited biomedical publications.

These studies, previously conducted in 2001, 2003 and 2005, have been used both within NHMRC and externally to illustrate the high quality of the publication output in health and medical research that comes from NHMRC and Australia as a whole.

Copies of the report are available on the NHMRC website

Third edition of Acute Pain Management: Scientific Evidence

NHMRC has recently approved Acute Pain Management: Scientific Evidence Third Edition (2010), developed by the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists (ANZCA).

The aim of the document is, as with the first two editions, to combine a review of the best available evidence for acute pain management with current clinical and expert practice, rather than to formulate specific clinical practice recommendations.

The publication can be viewed on the ANZCA website or NHMRC website.

Public consultation on draft Clinical practice guidelines for depression and related disorders in the perinatal period

Beyondblue: the national depression initiative developed the Clinical practice guidelines for depression and related disorders (anxiety, bipolar disorder and puerperal psychosis) in the perinatal period (the draft Guidelines) with an Expert Advisory Group chaired by Professor Marie-Paule Austin. 

NHMRC has provided methodological support through the Guideline Assessment Register Consultant. The draft Guidelines contain systematically developed recommendations and summarise published evidence on key areas of perinatal mental health care. 

Public Consultation runs until 12 May 2010. The draft is available on the Beyond Blue website.

Podcast: NHMRC Newscast March 2010

Monthly podcast summary of NHMRC’s latest events and announcements. In this Newscast:

  • awards for Australia’s best and brightest researchers
  • $150 million boost to health and medical research
  • and an Australian first – our Clinical Practice Guidelines portal goes live.

See full article...

NHMRC Tracker 5 March 2010

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Human Frontier Science Program's Intergovernmental Conference 27-28 May 2010

On May 27 and 28, 2010, the NHMRC is hosting the Human Frontier Science Program’s (HFSP) Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) in Canberra. NHMRC supports Australia’s membership to the HFSP, promoting basic research focused on the complex mechanisms of living organisms.

In conjunction with the IGC, NHMRC is holding a “Scientific Session” at the Shine Dome, Canberra, on the morning of Thursday 27 May to showcase the achievements of Australian researchers supported by the HFSP.

This is a unique opportunity to hear about outstanding cutting edge research that is stretching the frontiers of health and medical research. Places are limited at this free session. If you are interested in attending this event, please RSVP by mid April 2010 to Sarah Busby.

For further information please visit the HFSP website.

Training (Postdoctoral) Fellowships – Indigenous Health Short Term Exchange Award

The Short Term Exchange Award has been introduced in this round of the Training (Postdoctoral) Fellowships, with funding commencing in 2011. This revised award will allow greater flexibility for Training (Postdoctoral) Fellowship awardees who are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander Australians. Support is offered for study travel, either within Australia or overseas for a period of up to six weeks and may commence as soon as offers are accepted.

Further information on application for this award will be available on the NHMRC website after the announcement of the outcomes of the Training (Postdoctoral) Fellowships.

National Certification Scheme - NHMRC assessment of ethical review process

Institutions seeking NHMRC's assessment of their ethical review processes under the National Certification Scheme were asked to table their nomination by the end of February. To date, 28 nominations have been received and include 17 public hospitals, 4 private hospitals, 3 universities and 4 'other' institutions.

NHMRC will carry out a desktop assessment of each institution's nomination followed by verification on-site visits during May and June 2010.  Further information about the National Certification Scheme can be found on the NHMRC website.

Release of NHMRC Biobanks Information Paper

NHMRC has released an Information Paper to facilitate best practices for the management and governance of biobank and tissue bank facilities, specific to an Australian research environment. The Information Paper draws on relevant national and international documentation and uses case studies to provide relevant contextual detail. The Information Paper is available on the NHMRC eGenetics website.

Clinical Practice Guidelines Portal launched

The Parliamentary Secretary for Health, the Hon Mark Butler MP, launched the new national Clinical Practice Guidelines Portal, developed by the NHMRC.  It will provide links to current Australian health guidelines developed by governments, professional colleges, specialty societies and non-government agencies.

In addition to the Portal, the NHMRC has developed a national clinical practice Guidelines in Development Register. This Register contains information about clinical practice guidelines that are planned or currently being developed in Australia.

The Portal and Register can be accessed at www.clinicalguidelines.gov.au.

See full article...

February 2010

NHMRC Tracker 19 February 2010

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Peer Review of applications into Indigenous health

For applications involving Indigenous health research for Project Grants, Postgraduate Scholarships, Training awards and Career Development Awards, NHMRC will establish specific Indigenous Health Peer Review Panels for 2010.  Panel members will have both research expertise and will assess applications against the Criteria for Health and Medical Research of Indigenous Australians.

For Indigenous health applications for other schemes, specific external written assessment against the Criteria for Health and Medical Research of Indigenous Australians will be sought.

Further information can be found on the NHMRC website.

TRIP Fellowships – new application closing date

The Translating Research Into Practice (TRIP) Fellowships has a new application closing date: Friday, 5 March 2010, 5:00pm AEDST.  Further information is available on the NHMRC website.

Please note, applications to this new scheme will not be via NHMRC's new online Research Grants Management System (RGMS).

Management of volatile substance use

NHMRC is developing clinical practice guidelines for the management of volatile substance use (VSU). To register to receive updates on the progress of the guidelines, please email your contact details to vsu@nhmrc.gov.au or for further information, visit the NHMRC website.

Podcast: NHMRC Newscast February 2010

Monthly podcast summary of NHMRC’s latest events and announcements.

See full article...

NHMRC Tracker 5th February 2010

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New Research Grants Management System (RGMS): Update

RGMS routine maintenance – no access every TUESDAY from 6am to 9am

The RGMS system is usually available to users at all hours.  However, in order to ensure scheduled maintenance occurs in a predictable fashion, RGMS will be unavailable to all users between 6am and 9am AEDST every Tuesday morning from 9 February 2010. This is to ensure that system enhancements and performance improvements can be implemented with minimal inconvenience to applicants.

Australia Fellowship Round Five: Expressions of Interest

Australia Fellowship Round Five will open for Expressions of Interest on 10 February 2010 for funding commencing in 2011.

In this fifth funding round, NHMRC particularly encourages applications from health and medical researchers whose record of research achievements and vision for the Fellowship contributes to the translation of discoveries into improvements in clinical care, health services and public health.

Expressions of Interest for Australian based applicants CLOSE: 25 March 2010.

Expressions of Interest for International based applicants CLOSE: 30 July 2010.

Further information on the Australia Fellowships scheme can be found on the NHMRC website.

2009 NHMRC Partnership Projects

Applicants wishing to apply for funding under the 2009 NHMRC Partnership Projects call (announced December 2009, closing 30 April 2010) are advised that applications can be submitted on-line in RGMS from Friday 5 February.

Further information about this call, including the Funding Policy and Advice to Applicants, can be found on the NHMRC website.

NHMRC TRIP Fellowship Scheme

Translating Research Into Practice (TRIP) is a new ea,rly-to-mid career fellowship scheme to support the translation of research findings into clinical practice.

Applications are now open and will close at 5pm (AEDST) 1 March 2010, for funding commencing in October 2010. The funding policy, guide to applicants and application forms are available on the NHMRC website.

Information teleconferences will be held in February 2010.  Please check the NHMRC website for teleconference dates.

To register and to receive your toll-free dial-in access PIN please email TRIPFellowships@nhmrc.gov.au

Please note, applications to this new scheme will not be via NHMRC's new online Research Grants Management System (RGMS).

HoMER certification scheme now accepting nominations

Institutions are invited to apply to NHMRC to assess and certify their ethical review processes for assessment and certification under the Harmonisation of Multi-centre Ethical Review initiative. Applications received by the end of February will be assessed in the first round of certification due to be completed in mid 2010. Visit the updated HoMER webpage for more information.

Completion of Suite of Guidelines on Type 2 Diabetes

The National Evidence Based Guideline for the Primary Prevention of Type 2 Diabetes has been approved by the Chief Executive Officer.

The Guidelines were developed by Diabetes Australia and are available on the Diabetes Australia website.

Podcast – Collaborating against the enemy: H1N1

What’s the best way for 41 medical research teams to tackle a fast-tracked, $7 million effort to combat a pandemic threat? Collaborate, says WA Chief Medical Officer and NHMRC Council member Dr Simon Towler.

In this podcast, during his closing remarks to leading minds from around the country at NHMRC’s two-day N1H1 swine flu workshop, Dr Towler promotes the benefits of collaboration.

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January 2010

NHMRC Tracker 22nd January 2010

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Career Development Awards for funding commencing in 2011

NHMRC Career Development Awards are now open and applications close on 31 March 2010.

The Career Development Awards funding scheme aims to further develop Australian health and medical researchers early in their career.

Further information on the Career Development Award scheme can be found on the NHMRC website.

Typical characteristics of successful Career Development Award applications – A guide for researchers

To help researchers in deciding whether they are competitive for Career Development Awards they should view the guide on typical successful CDA applicants in the last 5 years on the NHMRC website

Call for Researchers to serve on the Project Grant Review Panels in 2010

NHMRC is currently identifying researchers to serve on the Project Grant Review Panels in 2010.

Researchers can express their interest by email to grp.membership@nhmrc.gov.au.

Appointments will be made after reviewing the availability of the researchers approached and the range of specific skills and expertise required to assess the applications.

NHMRC grant holders are reminded of their obligations to assist the NHMRC by participating in peer review. NHMRC relies upon the cooperation of the Australian and international research community to assist with peer review and we greatly appreciate your ongoing support.

NHMRC TRIP Fellowship Scheme

Translating Research Into Practice (TRIP) is a new early-to-mid career fellowship scheme to support the translation of research findings into clinical practice.

Applications are now open and will close at 5pm (AEDST) 1 March 2010, for funding commencing in October 2010. The funding policy, guide to applicants and application forms are available on the NHMRC website.

Information sessions will be conducted via teleconference in February 2010, please check the NHMRC website for dates.

Please note this scheme is not currently part of the NHMRC's new online Research Grants Management System (RGMS).

Call for research into services structures for severe and persistent mental illness

‘Effective health care’ is identified as a major health issue in the NHMRC Strategic Plan 2006-2009. NHMRC’s previous National Health Committee indicated that there was a need for research to inform health policy development for people with chronic and persistent mental illness.

To address this need, Mental illness - Services for severe and persistent mental illness has been included as a Strategic Plan Initiative in the 2010 Project Grant application round. NHMRC hopes that high quality research will lead to:

  1. identifying which service structures best support optimal client outcomes (across the domains of welfare, rehabilitation, housing, physical health and mental health) for people with chronic and persistent mental illness;
  2. promoting change in practitioner practices in line with research outcomes; and
  3. trialling of new and innovative systems of care based on evidence of "what works".

Project Grant applications in the following areas are particularly encouraged:

  • evaluation of systems of care that encourage cooperation and coordination of services across relevant areas of health, vocational rehabilitation and disability support;
  • improving knowledge about the capacity within service systems to achieve effective outcome measurements and monitoring of individuals in the system; and
  • mechanisms to prevent system failure in health, rehabilitation and disability support.

Further information on NHMRC’s Priority research area of Indigenous health, the NHMRC Strategic Plan Initiatives and Special Initiatives (externally funded), can be found in the Project Grants funding Policy for funding commencing in 2011 on the NHMRC website.

Australia Fellowship round five – EOI opening and closing date amendment

Australia Fellowship round five will open for Expressions of Interest on the amended date of 10 February 2010 for funding commencing in 2011.

The amended closing date for Expressions of Interest is 25 March 2010. NHMRC particularly invites translational researchers (practice or policy) to apply.

New guidelines to promote welfare of animals used in health and medical research

NHMRC has issued three new guidelines to promote the welfare of animals used in health and medical research:

  • NHMRC Guidelines on the Care of Cats Used for Scientific Purposes (2009)
  • NHMRC Guidelines on the Care of Dogs Used for Scientific Purposes (2009)
  • NHMRC Guidelines on the Use of Animals for Training Interventional Medical Practitioners and Demonstrating Medical Equipment and Techniques (2009)

Further information and copies of these guidelines can be obtained from the NHMRC website or through the Health and Research Ethics Section.

New Privacy Guidelines for Health Practitioners in the Private Sector

Under an amendment to the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth), health practitioners are permitted to disclose genetic information to a genetic relative of the patient without the patient's consent.

To assist health practitioners in these situations, NHMRC developed a user-friendly guidance document entitled ‘Use and disclosure of genetic information to a patient’s genetic relatives under Section 95AA of the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) – Guidelines for health practitioners in the private sector’. The guidelines came into effect on 15 December 2009 and are available via the NHMRC website.

NEW - NHMRC Newscast

NHMRC Newscast is a short podcast summary of NHMRC’s latest events and announcements. If you prefer to hear rather than read information important to Australia’s health and medical research community, listen to the first edition of NHMRC Newscast January 2010.

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Page reviewed: 30 August, 2014