Latest news and stories

Adding new cells to the mature central nervous system - Investigating their normal function and potential for repair

For people with Multiple Sclerosis (MS), the myelin that covers nerve fibres in the central nervous system (brain, optic nerves and spinal cord) is damaged, leading to impairment of cognitive, motor and sometimes sensory functions.

  • Ten of the Best
  • 16 February 2021

How our immune cells kill cancer

With her team, she discovered that, when target cells do not die quickly, it can cause inflammation, which hampers the body’s immune response.

  • Ten of the Best
  • 4 February 2021
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COVID-3D: A small leap to scale up to COVID-19

Early in 2020, the University of Melbourne’s Bio21 team was working on protein modelling to better understand antimicrobial resistance for improved drug development. In March they turned their attention to the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which had already undergone many mutations. In September, the team’s work was published in Nature Genetics

  • 3 February 2021

Using digital innovations to address depression and binge drinking in young Australians

Professor Frances Kay-Lambkin is a psychologist and leads an international team at the Priority Research Centre for Brain and Mental Health at the University of Newcastle. Her research focuses on the development and translation of evidence-based treatments for comorbid mental disorders for young Australians.

  • Ten of the Best
  • 3 February 2021

Improving the health and wellbeing of children by making it easy to be active throughout the day

Professor Jo Salmon from the Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition (IPAN), Deakin University received the Elizabeth Blackburn Investigator Grant Award at last year’s NHMRC Research Excellence Awards. Her research focuses on how to effectively implement physical activity interventions at scale across the population, particularly in children. Physical inactivity is a leading modifiable risk factor for childhood obesity and other physical and mental health conditions.

  • InFocus
  • 28 January 2021

Building Indigenous research capacity in Australia

For nearly three decades, Professor Jacinta Elston has worked in higher education, furthering efforts to improve Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health in Australia. Professor Elston is an Aboriginal woman from North Queensland and the inaugural Pro Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous) at Monash University.

  • Ten of the Best
  • 19 January 2021

'10 of the Best': Showcasing health and medical research success stories

Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council has launched the 12th edition of 10 of the Best, showcasing significant projects that support the improvement of human health.

  • Media release
  • 12 January 2021

CEO Communique – 15 December 2020

Key points

  • $260 million investment in 283 Ideas Grants was announced today.
  • $20 million of extra funding has been provided to assist the sector’s recovery from disruption of research by COVID-19.
  • Streamlined peer review enabled the Ideas Grants round to be completed despite COVID-19.
  • Outcomes were released before the end of the year thanks to exceptional support from peer reviewers across the sector.
  • Communique
  • 15 December 2020

No more than 10 a week and 4 a day…

National Health and Medical Research Council confirms new national guidelines for reducing the health risks from drinking alcohol.

  • Media release
  • 8 December 2020

Targeting dangerous heart attack and stroke-causing plaques

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.

  • Ten of the Best
  • 1 December 2020

A smart needle for safer brain surgery

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.

  • Ten of the Best
  • 1 December 2020

Expert Committee to review Australian Dietary Guidelines

Applications are invited from experts to join the review of the Australian Dietary Guidelines

  • Media release
  • 25 November 2020
Scan of a brain

Case study: Neurodegenerative disease and metals

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.

  • InFocus
  • 13 November 2020

Using antimicrobials to prevent infections in our hospitals

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. 

  • InFocus
  • 4 November 2020

Australian Partnership for Preparedness Research on Infectious Disease Emergencies

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.

  • InFocus
  • 27 October 2020

Twenty years of preparation

Over the past 20 years, NHMRC has invested more than $23 million in 37 projects on pandemic preparedness.

  • InFocus
  • 27 October 2020

Linking high quality international research for improvements in Indigenous health

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.

  • Video
  • 15 October 2020

Budget 2020-21 

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.

  • Communique
  • 6 October 2020

Repairing the nervous system with patients’ own stem cells

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.

  • InFocus
  • 28 September 2020
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NHMRC Dementia Research News

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).

  • News
  • 18 September 2020

Improving kidney health for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

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.

  • InFocus
  • 18 September 2020

Unravelling the pathobiology of non-Alzheimer dementias and degenerative motor syndromes

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. 

  • InFocus
  • 26 August 2020

Changes to NHMRC’s Grant Schedule and Policies in Response to COVID-19

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.

  • Communique
  • 4 August 2020

Using big data to improve people's health

Professor Louisa Jorm is the Foundation Director of the Centre for Big Data Research in Health at UNSW Sydney.

  • Video
  • 3 August 2020
Professor Carola Vinuesa

Blue sky impacts for human health

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. 

  • Video
  • 30 July 2020

Vaccine development and prevention strategies for Hepatitis C

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.

  • Video
  • 10 July 2020

Aboriginal mental health research and the importance of resilience

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.

  • InFocus
  • 10 July 2020

Peoples lives transformed through bionics

Professor David Grayden is in the department of biomedical engineering at the University of Melbourne.

  • Video
  • 7 July 2020
Professor Si Ming Man

Fellowship contributing to Australian health

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.

  • Video
  • 2 July 2020

Boosting study in auto immune disease

Professor Joanne Reed from the Garvan Institute's research focuses on autoimmune diseases, particularly the origin and role of autoantibodies.

  • Video
  • 1 July 2020

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. 

  • InFocus
  • 29 June 2020

Public consultation on updated guidance on the radiological quality of drinking water

NHMRC is seeking public feedback on updated guidance that provides advice on the radiological quality of drinking water.

  • News
  • 29 June 2020

Focus on cardiovascular disease prevention

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. 

  • Video
  • 27 June 2020

Motivated to repair insulating system of the brain

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.

  • Video
  • 8 June 2020

Latest Sapphire Update

Sapphire Hints and Tips

  • News
  • 2 June 2020
Professor Sudha Rao

Talented women can keep pursuing their research

“What I really like about the NHMRC system is that it is a fantastic scheme for women in science.”

  • Video
  • 1 June 2020
Associate Professor Leonie Quinn

Using a fly to understand cancer genetics and biology

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.

  • Video
  • 1 June 2020

Sapphire Hints and Tips

Sapphire Update

  • News
  • 25 May 2020

Game changer through a new vaccine for Rotavirus

Professor Julie Bines from Murdoch Children's Research Institute is doing some inspiring work, developing the RV3-BB rotavirus vaccine.

  • Video
  • 24 May 2020

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.

  • InFocus
  • 20 May 2020

Which treatments will save lives in ICU?

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.

  • InFocus
  • 19 May 2020

Changes to Peer Review Processes for the Ideas Grant scheme in 2020

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. 

  • Communique
  • 13 May 2020

Professor Ross Hannan: Detective in cancer research

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.

  • Video
  • 30 April 2020
Professor Emily Banks

Difference in research through prevention with Professor Emily Banks

Professor Emily Banks is focused on those unanswered questions around prevention to really make a difference.

  • Video
  • 27 April 2020

RAO Alert - 21 April 2020

RAO Guidance for Accepting NHMRC & MRFF Grants Offers in RGMS

  • 21 April 2020

Additional NHMRC support for COVID-19 research

The Minister for Health, the Hon. Greg Hunt MP, has announced additional funding for research to support the response to COVID-19.

  • Media release
  • 14 April 2020

Update – Changes to NHMRC 2020 Funding Schemes

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.

  • Communique
  • 27 March 2020

Message from the CEO to the health and medical research sector

This is an uncertain time and we know many researchers are worried about the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on their research, grant applications and other professional activities over the coming months – on top of the concern we all share for family, friends and the wider community.

  • Communique
  • 19 March 2020

NHMRC Research Excellence Awards 2019

The annual National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Research Excellence Awards.

  • News
  • 13 March 2020

Sapphire Launch

NHMRC is excited to announce the launch of the new NHMRC grant management solution, Sapphire. From today, researchers and RAOs will have access to view and update their profile information in Sapphire. Information on how to access Sapphire is available on the NHMRC Sapphire Website. 

  • News
  • 24 February 2020