19 Dec 2014

PhD students in the spotlight

Jodie Abramovitch
Aislin Meehan 
This week we sat down with two CCS PhD researchers to talk about their experiences in completing their thesis. We spoke to Aislin Meehan and Jodie Abramovitch, both from The Department of Immunology. 

Jodie is supervised by Prof Jennifer Rolland and Prof Robin O'Hehir and her research looks at shellfish allergies. Click here to read her profile.

Aislin just finished her PhD which looked at the role of Natural Killer (NK) cells after human lung transplantation. Aislin was supervised by Dr Glen Westall and co supervised by Dr Nicole Mifsud and A/Prof Tom Kotsimbos. Click here to read her profile.

18 Dec 2014

Vaccines and the immune system

Jacques Banchereau talk on tailoring vaccine development
The Monash University Department of Immunology and Burnet Institute hosted a symposium featuring two international guest speakers, Professors Virgina Pascual and Jacques Banchereau on 24 November 2014. Two videos have been uploaded:
  • Professor Fabienne Mackay, (Head of Department of Immunology at Monash) speaks about her lab's recent research on the role of dentritic cells in Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (CLL). Video link
  • Professor Jacques Banchereau speaks about his immunological research at The Jackson Laboratory (JAX), USA, where from 2013 he has been Professor and Director of Immunology Sciences. His particular interest is in tailoring vaccines using dendritic cells. Video link

New use for thermal imaging in neurosurgery

AVM: A congenital tangle of blood
vessels which can cause bleeding, pain
or other serious medical problems
Image: vascularrneuro.com
How do we tell when surgery to remove a cerebral arteriovenous malformation (AVM) has been successful? Normally it requires invasive angiography to image the blood vessels supplying the AVM. Associate Professor Peter Hwang and Dr Phil Lewis (Department of Surgery), working with Dr Jerome Maller (MAPRc), wondered whether the abnormally high blood flow through the AVM might be causing reduced blood flow and therefore lower temperature in structures fed by the same blood vessels. 

The main vessels feeding each hemisphere are the carotid arteries, which also supply blood to the eyes. The investigators found that in one patient, eye temperature on the side of the AVM was lower than the other, and this temperature difference disappeared after surgical removal of the AVM. They now plan to see if eye temperature difference can be used as a surrogate measure of AVM size or flow, and whether a resolution of eye temperature difference could be useful as an adjunct marker of the success of AVM treatment.

16 Dec 2014

Stabbing, gunshot and blast injuries: management and outcomes

Gunshot wound to the left parietal lobe
A review of the current management, prognostic factors and outcomes of penetrating and blast injuries to the central nervous system highlights the differences between gunshot wound (GSW), blast injury and stabbing. GSW and blast injuries cause complex damage and multidisciplinary specialist management is required for them.

Reference and full text link:  Rosenfeld JV, Bell RS, Armonda R. Current concepts in penetrating and blast injury to the central nervous system. World Journal of Surgery. Published online 2 Dec 2014.

2015 Scientific Mobilisation Program - Travel grant opportunity for French collaboration

The Australian Academy of Science (AAS) and the Embassy of France in Australia have released a call for applications for the 2015 Scientific Mobilisation Program from candidates who are conducting a research project involving at least one French scientific or technological partner. This travel grant will cover the expense of one economy return airfare from any Australian capital city to a major airport in France (to depart from mid March 2015), and stay for a maximum of 28 days. Preference will be given to early career researchers. For further information including eligibility requirements and how to apply please visit http://www.ambafrance-au.org/2015-Scientific-mobilisation

Closing date is  9am, Monday 19 January 2015. Results will be announced January - early February 2015.

Monash Vision's bionic eye: the challenges of marrying biology with technology

Image: AMA
A recently published review details the challenges inherent in developing a bionic vision device employing electrical stimulation of visual cortex. The paper covers the spectrum of biological, engineering and clinical problems that developers of such devices (including the Monash Vision Group) have encountered thus far. The authors are Dr Phil Lewis, Dr Helen Ackland, Professor Arthur Lowery and Professor Jeffrey V. Rosenfeld.

Read more: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25446438

Monash's immersive visualisation facility (84,000,000 pixels!)

Professor Paul Bonnington demonstrating Monash's CAVE2(TM) facility, Monash's Immersive Visualisation Platform at the Clayton campus. CAVE stands for CAVE Assisted Virtual Environment. CAVE2 is a trademark of the University of Illinois Board of Trustees. The backdrop image is of neural pathways in 3D. See more:

15 Dec 2014

Participants sought: Dietary fibre and health

Leek and prawn risotto, on the menu
Healthy volunteers are required for a study investigating the optimal increase in dietary fibre to improve bowel movement and gut bacteria. This study involves volunteers consuming nutritionally balanced diets that vary only in their dietary fibre content, over an entire period of 12 weeks. All cooked food will be supplied. Participants will be asked to purchase the fresh food component of the diet. All the diets have been designed and prepared by a fully qualified and experienced professional chef.

See more: www.med.monash.edu/cecs/gastro/clin-trials/ct-veitch.html

12 Dec 2014

Congratulations to Casey Lo for his Master of Surgery award!

Congratulations to Mr Casey Lo, who has been awarded the degree of Master of Surgery.

Casey’s thesis "Right ventricular failure in left ventricular assisted patients" was accepted in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree by the Graduate Research Steering Committee on Tuesday 9 December 2014.

Casey was enrolled through the Department of Surgery and was supervised by Drs Silvana Marasco and Deirdre Murphy.

Does anaesthesia with nitrous oxide affect mortality or cardiovascular morbidity?

CCS researchers have written a study which looks at anaesthesia with nitrous oxide and its affect  on patient mortality or cardiovascular morbidity.

11 Dec 2014

Laura Blair-West wins best poster presentation at the Australian Cognitive Science Conference

Laura Blair West (MAPrc BMedSc(Hons) student) won best poster at the Australian Cognitive Science Conference. for her paper titled 'Social decision-making following transcranial direct current stimulation to the right temporoparietal junction: The role of psychopathic traits'. It was competitive as there were approximately 30 poster presenters. Laura also did very well at the AMREP EMCR conference earlier this year, winning the poster section there. Congratulations Laura!

Surgery prize awarded to vascular registrar Chris Brooks

The 2014 participants. L-R: Chris Brooks, Jun Ban, Sean Huang, Andrew Packiyanathan, Riza Gultekin, Alex Jarema, Charles Gallagher, Hedley Roth. Absent: Marli Williams, Georgina Stephens, Emma Sim, Angus Lee.
The D.S. Rosengarten Surgical Trainee Research Prize was established in 1985. The 2014 Symposium, 30th in the series, was very successful with 12 presenters. A vascular registrar, Chris Brooks, won the prize, for his presentation, "Smoking increases postoperative respiratory complications and unplanned return to Theate in vascular surgical patients". Emma Sim and Georgina Stephens received honourable mentions.

Mrs Candice Rosengarten, widow of David Rosengarten and creator of the prize, attended and presented the prize. Mr Stewart Skinner chaired the symposium. J&J Medical sponsored the $1000 prize money. Feedback from presenters, adjudicators and audience was very positive.


Congratulations to Amber Moore, on the award of her PhD degree!

Congratulations to Ms Amber Moore, who has been awarded the degree of Doctor of Philosophy on 2 December 2014. Her thesis was titled "Philosophical and professional issues in Chinese medicine". Amber was enrolled in the Department of Medicine, and supervised by Professor Paul Komesaroff and Dr Kylie O'Brien. Well done Amber! Beyond the PhD: Amber is Programs Coordinator at the Australian Institute of Applied Sciences.

5 Dec 2014

Analysis of bone healing in flail chest injury: do we need to fix both fractures per rib?

CCS researchers Dr Silvana Marasco, Assoc Prof Susan Liew and Prof Dinesh Varma have co-written a study which looks at bone healing in flail chest injury.

According to the article, surgical rib fixation for severe rib fracture injuries is generating increasing interest in the medical literature. It is well documented that poorly healed fractured ribs can lead to chronic pain, disability, and deformity.

Clinical presentation of risk factors of hepatitis C virus among HIV-infected patients in Bissau, Guinea-Bissau

CCS researchers have written an article which looks at the clinical presentation of risk factors of hepatitis C virus among HIV-infected patients in Bissau, Guinea-Bissau.

4 Dec 2014

Jay Jha is CCS's 20th PhD completion for 2014! Congratulations Jay!

Mr Jay Jha has been awarded the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Jay did his research at the Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute. His research is on the complications of diabetes, especially in relation to kidney disease. Jay's supervisor is Professor Karin Jandeleit-Dahm.

Jay’s thesis is titled "Role of NADPH oxidases NOX1 and NOX4 in diabetic nephropathy: Genetic Deletion and Pharmacological inhibition studies" and was accepted in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree by the Graduate Research Steering Committee on Tuesday 2 December 2014.

See more about Jay on his Student Profile.

Congratulations to Dr Kathryn Hackman, awarded her PhD

Dr Kathryn Hackman has been awarded the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Her candidate’s thesis is titled "Diabetes Mellitus in lung transplant recipients - prevalence, risk factors and effect on survival", and was accepted in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree by the Graduate Research Steering Committee on 2 December 2014. 

Kathryn was enrolled through the Department of Medicine and supervised by Professor Leon Bach (Medicine) and Professor Gregory Snell (AIRmed). She won the 2013 CCS 3MT thesis heat for her presentation on how diabetes halves survival in lung transplant patients.

3 Dec 2014

"Top 5 under 40" competition: Are you a young scientist with a passion for communicating your research?

To mark 40 years of The Science ShowTop 5 under 40 is an exciting initiative jointly offered by University of New South Wales and ABC Radio National to discover Australia’s new generation of science thinkers – and give them a voice.

We’re looking for outstanding early-career researchers aged under 40 working in Australian universities and research organisations across the fields of science, medical research, technology, engineering and maths. A desire and flair for communicating your work is a must.

The 10 applicants with the most innovative ideas will be selected for a two-day workshop in February 2015, coordinated by ABC RN. Working with the network's experienced producers and science presenters, you will develop your radio program ideas and pitch to a panel of judges, including Robyn Williams (RN), Professor Fiona Stanley (UWA), Professor Lesley Hughes (Macquarie) and Professor Merlin Crossley (UNSW).

The five winners – our Top 5 under 40 – will undertake a 10-day media program as 'Scientists in Residence' at RN’s Sydney studios.

For more information and to apply  - http://www.unsw.edu.au/top5under40

1 Dec 2014

Professor Bruce Thompson on NHMRC, ARC and Victorian Government grants for asthma and respiratory research

Professor Bruce Thompson, Head, Physiology Service in the Department of Allergy, Immunology and Respiratory Medicine has contributed to recent grant successes:
  • NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence: APP1078579. National Clinical Centre of Research Excellence in Severe Asthma. P Gibson, G Marks, V McDonald, P Wark, G King, B Thompson, H Reddel, J Upham, L Smith, A James. $2,498,171.
  • ARC Discovery Project 2015-2018: DP150102240. Hybrid Imaging/Modelling: Unlocking our understanding of the lung. A Fouras, GJ Sheard, BR Thompson. $334,400.
  • Victorian Government Tender – Department of Health 2015-2025. A long term study into potential health effects from the Hazelwood Coal mine fire. $26,540,464. Bruce is involved in the respiratory component, and the overall lead is Prof Michael Abramson (SPHPM).

28 Nov 2014

FODMAP in the long term

Department of Gastroenterology researchers have authored a study which looks at fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols and their role in irritable bowel syndrome.

Photos from 24 Nov Immunology Symposium

L-R: Professor Fabienne Mackay, HOD, Department of Immunology; Dr Irina Caminschi, Laboratory Head, Dendritic cell biology and Immunotherapy, Burnet Institute; Professor Jacques Banchereau, The Jackson Laboratory (JAX), USA; Professor Virginia Pascual, Baylor Institute for Immunology Research, USA; Professor Paul Hertzog, Monash Institute of Medical Research; Dr Mireille Lahoud, Laboratory head, Dendritic Cell Receptors, Burnet Institute; Associate Professor Mark Wright, Laboratory Head, Leucocyte Membrane Protein Laboratory, Department of Immunology; Dr Meredith O’Keefe, Head, Dendritic Cell Research Lab, Burnet Institute; Professor Ken Shortman, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute
The Monash University Department of Immunology and Burnet Institute hosted a symposium on 24 November 2014 featuring two international guest speakers, Dr Virgina Pascual and Dr Jacques Banchereau. It was very well attended. See Photo gallery

Volumetric, cortical thickness and white matter integrity alterations in bipolar disorder type I and II

Dr Jerome Maller 
MAPrc researcher Dr Jerome Maller recently published an article which looks at volumetric, cortical thickness and white matter integrity alterations in bipolar disorder type I and II.

Looking back to the 20th International Symposium on Hepatitis C Virus and Related Viruses

Approximately 420 international researchers attended the 20th International Symposium on Hepatitis C Virus and Related Viruses in Melbourne from October 6–10, 2013.

Since the discovery of hepatitis C virus (HCV) in 1989, significant advances have been made in understanding the molecular biology and host response to this significant pathogen, many of which have been presented at this symposium.

Congratulations to our recently completed PhD students!

Congratulations to two of our PhD students who have recently been awarded their degrees.

Aislin Meehan

Aislin's thesis was entitled "Investigating the function of natural killer cells during Immunological responses following human lung transplantation" and her supervisors were A/Prof Glen Westall, Dr Nicole Mifsud and A/Prof Tom Kotsimbos (Department of Allergy, Immunology and Respiratory medicine).

Andris Ellims

Andris' thesis was entitled "Ventricular remodelling in cardiomyopathy - impact on ventricular physiology and cardiovascular outcomes". Andris's thesis was completed through the Department of Medicine. Andris was supervised by Associate Professor Andrew Taylor, Head of Clinical Imaging at BakerIDI.

Well done to our PhD graduates! 

Management strategies for abdominal bloating and distension

According to a recent CCS study, bloating and distension are among the most common gastrointestinal complaints reported by patients with functional gut disorders and by the general population.

21 Nov 2014

The effectiveness of cough medicine

Infectious Diseases student, Christina Chang has authored an article which found that there is insufficient evidence to decide whether over the counter medications for cough associated with acute pneumonia are beneficial.

TV viewing time and our well being

Mr Paddy Dempsey from Baker IDI has written an article about television viewing time with adults' well-being and vitality. According to the study, television viewing, a common leisure-time sedentary behaviour, is associated adversely with cardio-metabolic health, fatigue, depression and mental health.

Low FODMAP and preventing the next fad diet

Dr Jane Muir and Prof Peter Gibson have written an article about the emerging story of dietary fibre and gut health. The article notes that the evidence is strengthening for the role of a low FODMAP diet in managing IBS, but researchers are concerned that it doesn't become the next gluten-free fad.

20 Nov 2014

Cell image library: still and interactive images

The Cell: An Image Library™ is a freely accessible, easy-to-search, public repository of reviewed and annotated images, videos, and animations of cells from a variety of organisms, showcasing cell architecture, intracellular functionalities, and both normal and abnormal processes. The purpose of this database is to advance research, education, and training, with the ultimate goal of improving human health. Images used should be referenced appropriately. See more: www.cellimagelibrary.org/

CCS postgrad students (and supervisors) excel in symposium

L-R: No-Bell grilling by Jodie Abramovitch, Kai Lee, Man Kit
 Lee, Timothy Colgan and their subject, Dr Paul Gregorovic
Central Clinical School postgraduate students held a very successful symposium on 19 November 2014, the seventh annual symposium since the series inception. There was an outstanding line up of both oral and poster presenters. Comic relief was provided by getting supervisors to jump through the hoops of "Explain my graph" (in which a supervisor had to speak to graphs in a subject area not their own) and the "No-Bell" prize competition (in which supervisors had to answer tricky questions in very non-technical language).

18 Nov 2014

2014 Melbourne Cell Development and Biology (#MCDB7) symposium winners

The ANZSCDB Victorian Symposium, held on 5 November 2014 at the AMREP Education Centre was attended by over 160 people. Congratulations to everyone who won awards in various categories. See more photos.
Dr Denny Cottle:
Best Postdoctoral
Poster Presentation
Ms Michelle Henstridge:
Best ANZSCDB Member
Poster Presentation
Mr Lee Miles:
Best Student
Poster Presentation
Dr James Godwin:
Best Postdoctoral
Oral Presentation
Dr Francesca Froldi:
Best ANZSCDB Member
Oral Presentation
Ms Hannah Vanyai:
Best Student
Oral Presentation

17 Nov 2014

Community service recognised for Prof Jayashri's work with women's mental health issues

Congratulations to Professor Jayashri Kulkarni, Director of Monash Alfred Psychiatry research centre, who is the 2014 winner of a City of Melbourne award in the Contribution to community category. The annual Melbourne Awards celebrate the inspirational Melburnians who dedicate their time and energy for the benefit of the city and are Melbourne's highest accolade. The award was announced 15 Nov 2014. See more:

14 Nov 2014

Let's face it: facial emotion processing is impaired in bipolar disorder.

Two researchers from MAPrc have published a study which looks at facial emotion processing in patients with bipolar disorder.

According to the study, patients with bipolar disorder have difficulty in recognizing and discriminating facial emotions.

Hepatitis E in Australian HIV-infected patients: An under-recognised pathogen?

A CCS study has assessed the seroprevalence of Hepatitis E virus in a cohort of HIV-infected patients with normal liver function and in another group with biochemical hepatitis.

According to the study. Hepatitis E virus infection has been found to cause chronic hepatitis in HIV-infected patients.

Anaesthesia outside the theatre environment

Adjunct Senior Lecturer Dr David Daly has co authored a study which looks at using anaesthesia outside the theatre environment.

According to the study, the demand for remote anaesthesia has dramatically increased in recent years.

10 Nov 2014

PhD student Peter Tsirikis receives 2015 Endeavour Australia Cheung Kong Research Fellowship

Peter Tsirikis, PhD student
Joint PhD student in Department of Immunology with Prof Magdalena Plebanski and A/Prof Cordelia Selomulya in the Department of Chemical Engineering, Peter Tsirikis recently received the 2015 Endeavour Australia Cheung Kong Research Fellowship.

Prof Magdalena Plebanski receives an ARC Discovery Grant

Department of Immunology researcher, Prof Magdalena Plebanski has been awarded an ARC Discovery Grant for her research in biodegradable nanoparticles.  Prof Plebanski is the project's lead investigator along with A/Prof Cordelia Selomulya from the Department of Chemical Engineering.

7 Nov 2014

Study looks into hospital smoking bans and the effect it can have on mental health patients

Hospitals which impose a ban on smoking often make it difficult for health professionals to deal with mental health patients in the emergency department. Hospital emergency departments are challenged by increasing numbers of people with mental health problems presenting with complex suicide or psychiatric risk.

When in doubt, cut it out - treating malignant melanomas

A CCS study that looks into the difficulty of diagnosing malignant melanomas has found that in the event of uncertain diagnosis or failed treatment of a lesion, an appropriate standard of care is full excisional biopsy if not previously performed, or referral of the case to an appropriate specialist or melanoma centre. The study is co-authored by the Director of the Victorian Melanoma Service, Alfred Health, Clinical Associate Professor John Kelly.

CCS awards 'Near Miss' funding to Kate Hoy, Catriona Bradshaw and Margaret Hibbs

Dr Kate Hoy
Dr Margaret Hibbs
Dr Catriona Bradshaw
The CCS has expanded its near miss funding program this year to provide additional support to investigators affected by the tightening of NHMRC purse strings. Three grants that all scored Category 5 quartile 4 and participated in the CCS review process will be awarded $100,000 each. Congratulations to our awardees this year, Dr Kate Hoy (MAPRc), Dr Catriona Bradshaw (Melbourne Sexual Health) and Dr Margaret Hibbs (Immunology).

6 Nov 2014

19 Nov CCS Annual Postgraduate Research Symposium: All welcome

Marina Iacovou presenting
at the 2013 CCS symposium

Central Clinical School invites you to attend the 2014 Annual Postgraduate Research Symposium.
  • Date: Wednesday 19 November 2014 
  • Time: 10 am-3.30 pm 
  • Venue: Lecture Theatre, level 5, Alfred Centre for oral presentations and hallway for poster presentations and refreshments.
  • Enquiries: Laisa Tigarea, hdr.ccs@monash.edu.
  • RSVP link
Many and varied talents will be on display. Students will explain their research, supervisors will explain difficult ideas in lay terms for the 'No-Bell' prize, and senior staff nominated by students from Burnet, BakerIDI, ACBD and Medicine will explain randomly allocated graphs for the 'Explain my graph' section. CCS PhD students will be running the program, including chairing the presentations: Ms Jodie Abramovitch (chair), Ms Kai Sin Lee, Ms Sara Mohktar, Mr Timothy Colgan and Mr Man Kit Lee, assisted by Ms Dussy Kuttner. Participants will be judged by a panel of senior academics and postdocs. Attractive monetary prizes will be given for outstanding work. For more information, please visit: http://www.med.monash.edu.au/cecs/education/hdr-symposium.html
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...