Latest news and stories
Heart attack and stroke are major causes of death and disability worldwide. With over 500,000 Australians suffering from some form of coronary artery disease.
Almost 2000 Australians are diagnosed with a malignant brain tumour each year1 and, tragically, it is the leading cause of cancer-related death among children. Professor Robert McLaughlin’s team at the University of Adelaide, with colleagues at The University of Western Australia, set out to better diagnose the specific type of tumours, which can benefit patients’ treatment options and outcomes.
The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) is investing $4.5 million in six ground-breaking international medical research projects aimed at improving outcomes in Alzheimer’s disease, emerging and re emerging infectious diseases, cancer, mental health conditions, anorexia nervosa and the human health impact of climate change.
Applications are invited from experts to join the review of the Australian Dietary Guidelines.
The formation of abnormal proteins in the brain has long been suspected to contribute to the development of Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative diseases. Yet many individuals with abnormal protein formations do not go on to develop such diseases.
Professor Mark Willcox from the University of New South Wales received the Marshall and Warren Ideas Grant Award at this year’s NHMRC Research Excellence Awards. Professor Willcox’s research targets hospital-acquired infections. Half of all hospital-acquired infections are from microbial colonisation of medical devices such as catheters and hip replacements. Professor Willcox and his team are developing new antimicrobial coatings that can be applied to medical devices to reduce the incidence of these infections.
APPRISE is the Australian Partnership for Preparedness Research on Infectious Disease Emergencies. It was established in 2016 with an investment of $5 million funded by NHMRC and an additional $2 million in 2020 to undertake a range of studies to inform the public health and clinical responses to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Over the past 20 years, NHMRC has invested more than $23 million in 37 projects on pandemic preparedness.
Professor Sandra Eades from Curtin University has dedicated her career to research in Aboriginal health improvements. Professor Eades works with NHMRC to advise and develop strategic guidelines focused on closing the gap.
The Australian Government is investing $35 million in 14 new Centres of Research Excellence through the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), announced in the 2020-21 Budget.
The Australian Government is investing almost $15 million to drive health and medical research in Australia towards commercial outcomes, announced in the 2020-21 Budget.
The Australian Government is providing more than $20 million for research partnerships that lead to improved health outcomes and preventative measures for conditions such as coronary heart disease, severe depression and gestational diabetes, announced in the 2020-21 Budget.
The Australian Government is investing $3.3 million in medical research to improve understanding of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, also known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, announced in the 2020-21 Budget.
Support for the critical role of health and medical research in improving the health of the Australian community continues in the 2020-21 Budget handed down on 6 October by the Treasurer, the Hon. Josh Frydenberg MP.
Associate Professor James St John from Griffith University received the Marshall and Warren Innovation Award at the 2020 NHMRC Research Excellence Awards. His research involves the development of cell transplantation therapies to repair the nervous system, particularly peripheral nerve and spinal cord injuries.
The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) remains committed to supporting dementia research in Australia following the end of the Australian Government's Boosting Dementia Research Initiative (BDRI).
Associate Professor Jaqui Hughes from the Menzies School of Health Research received the 2019 NHMRC Clinical Trials and Cohort Studies Award at NHMRC’s Research Excellence Awards ceremony in March 2020. Kidney disease is a significant health priority among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. The cohort study being led by A/Professor Hughes will describe the long-term changes in kidney function over 10 years. This will provide critical data to inform regional and national policy on identification and care of people with kidney disease.
Professor Glenda Halliday from the University of Sydney’s Faculty of Medicine and Health and the Brain and Mind Centre received NHMRC’s Elizabeth Blackburn Investigator Grant Award at this year’s NHMRC Research Excellence Awards. Her research aims to identify and understand the pathobiology of non-Alzheimer dementias and degenerative motor syndromes. These syndromes are currently under-recognised, mainly affect people in their prime, can kill rapidly, and have no mechanistic therapies.
NHMRC has changed the timing of the 2021 Investigator Grant and Clinical Trials and Cohort Studies schemes. NHMRC has also changed its Relative to Opportunity policy to accommodate the impacts of COVID-19 on research.
Professor Louisa Jorm is the Foundation Director of the Centre for Big Data Research in Health at UNSW Sydney.
Professor Carola Vinuesa is a Professor of Immunology at the Australian National University and Head of the Pathogens and Immunity Department. She discusses Cellular Immunology and how blue sky research impacts human health.
NHMRC caught up with Professor Andrew Lloyd from The University of New South Wales who develops vaccines for Hepatitis C, which effects 750,000 Australians.
Developing better understanding of effective therapeutic practices with Aboriginal clients, in Aboriginal community settings, and with Aboriginal practitioners, across the spectrum of mental health and social and emotional wellbeing outcomes is the goal of Dr Graham Gee.
Professor Erica Wood is head of the Transfusion Unit at Monash University. Her research describes how blood is used in Australia, and how its use can be improved and made safer and more cost-effective. Through registry data and clinical trials, and studies of novel blood products, Professor Wood and her team aim to improve access and transfusion outcomes for patients.
Professor David Grayden is in the department of biomedical engineering at the University of Melbourne.
Prof Si Ming Man from The Australian National University and his team investigates the role of innate immunity in infectious diseases and cancer. Professor Ming Man received the NHMRC Research Excellence Award for the highest-ranked Early Career Fellowship (2015) and an NHMRC Research Excellence Award for the highest-ranked Career Development Fellowship Biomedical Level 1 (2019). He also received the 2019 Commonwealth Health Minister's Medal for Excellence in Health and Medical Research and the 2021 CSL Centenary Fellowship.
Professor John Bekkers from the John Curtin School of Medical Research and his team are currently work on the neurons and circuits in the brain that underlie the sense of smell. His team focus on the olfactory cortex, a brain region that is responsible for our ability to recognise and remember odours.
Professor Joanne Reed from the Garvan Institute's research focuses on autoimmune diseases, particularly the origin and role of autoantibodies.
Professor Kate Conigrave from The University of Sydney is an Addiction Medicine Specialist and Public Health Physician based at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital. Her work combines treating individuals with alcohol, drug and tobacco problems; promoting the health of communities and research and teaching. She is currently the chair of the NHMRC's Alcohol Working Group, which is charged with reviewing the guidelines to reduce the health risks from drinking alcohol.
Professor Sean Grimmond is bringing groundbreaking genome-directed cancer research into the clinical space to change the way we treat cancer. This is one of NHMRC's largest ever funded projects.
Could an antiseptic mouthwash reduce sexually transmitted infections and improve the sex life of Australians?
The 2020 Commonwealth Health Minister's Award for Excellence in Health and Medical Research has been awarded to Associate Professor Eric Chow of Monash University. The award has been presented each year since 2000 and recognises the top-ranked recipient of a National Health and Medical Research Council Investigator Grant in the Emerging Leadership Level 2 category from the previous year’s application round.
NHMRC is seeking public feedback on updated guidance that provides advice on the radiological quality of drinking water.
Dr. Clara Chow is Professor of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health, Academic Director of the Westmead Applied Research Centre and Academic Co-Director of CPC Westmead. She is a NHMRC Investigator Grant Leadership awardee and with this leads a research program focused on innovation for health service provision and clinical management of cardiovascular disease prevention.
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Dr David Gonsalvez heads up a laboratory focused on how glia, the non-neuronal cells in the brain and spinal cord, develop, contribute to neuronal plasticity and respond following injury.
Sapphire Hints and Tips
“What I really like about the NHMRC system is that it is a fantastic scheme for women in science.”
In 2016 Associate Professor Leonie Quinn relocated to The John Curtin School of Medical Research (ANU, Canberra) to establish the Quinn Group - Cancer Models in the ACRF Department of Cancer Biology and Therapeutics.
$3.65 million for international research collaborations to improve public health in built environments
The Australian Government is investing $3.65 million in five ground-breaking public health research projects.
Professor Julie Bines from Murdoch Children's Research Institute is doing some inspiring work, developing the RV3-BB rotavirus vaccine.
Almost $400 million in world-leading health and medical research projects to improve the lives of all Australians.
The Investigator Grant scheme is NHMRC’s flagship scheme, developed as part of a major reform of NHMRC’s grant program. This is the second round of Investigator Grants to be awarded. A total of 237 leading researchers across all career stages will receive five-year Investigator Grants from the National Health and Medical Research Council.
The Morrison Government will invest almost $400 million in world-leading health and medical research projects to improve the lives of all Australians.
Over 275 intensive care units in 15 countries are trialling more than 33 pneumonia treatments to save the lives of critically ill COVID-19 patients. The trial, REMAP-CAP, is an adaptive clinical trial built to deliver fast results in a pandemic and is now one of three key national trials identified by the UK government.
On 19 March and 27 March 2020, the CEO provided updates on NHMRC’s plans for the 2020 grant round in light of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Australian health and medical research community.
Professor Hannan from the John Curtin School of Medical Research is an internationally recognised laboratory scientist, whose work on ribosome biogenesis has led to new treatment paradigms in cancer, centred on drugs that activate nucleolar stress.
Professor Emily Banks is focused on those unanswered questions around prevention to really make a difference.
RAO Guidance for Accepting NHMRC & MRFF Grants Offers in RGMS
The Minister for Health, the Hon. Greg Hunt MP, has announced additional funding for research to support the response to COVID-19.
Further to my message to the health and medical research sector on 19 March, NHMRC has been working hard and consulting with Research Committee and a number of peak stakeholder groups to develop a way forward in these very uncertain and challenging times.