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Australian scientific research of the highest international standard The australian national University (anU) has a rich history of discovery and a culture of enquiry that creates an exceptional and unrivalled research and learning environment.

Global climate change is now a major focus of public policy discussion. This remarkable consequence of intensified human activity underscores the crossroads that we have reached in our relations with the natural world. Climate change, along with various other global environmental changes and the proliferation of cities as our dominant habitat, have great consequences for our wellbeing, health and survival. Professor Tony McMichael nhMrc australia fellow national centre for epidemiology and Population health, australian national University


The University was established by the Federal Government in 1946 to lead the intellectual development of the country through research and education of the highest international standard. Today, ANU is one of the world’s leading centres of research and scholarship, and is consistently recognised as Australia’s top university. ANU is truly Australia’s national university, setting the bar in research, teaching and community engagement on issues of national and international significance. Our students study alongside and learn from distinguished academics – individual thinkers who are at the forefront of their respective fields: leading and shaping debates, making global breakthroughs and extending knowledge in new and profound directions. ANU also has strong relationships with important decision makers and remains a significant contributor to the advancement of the nation and its role in the world. The University is positioned closely to and aligned with other Australian national institutions, research organisations, offices of government, foreign ministries and the Australian Parliament. The University stands alongside the world’s other leading research and educational institutions as a member of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU) – a strategic partnership based on a shared global vision, research-led teaching and a commitment to educating future leaders.

With its legacy of intellectual leadership, position of national prominence and its global reach, anU is truly a national institution of international distinction.


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Notes: Includes index




Foreward by Prof. Ian Chubb

Introduction by Prof. Kurt Lambeck

1 2

The Australian Academy of Science is an important body that promotes and supports science and scientists in Australia.

Fostering talent, supporting training and providing incentives.

 Chapter One — Australian science in the international context


Contemporary research is thriving in an increasingly borderless world. Significant benefits are flowing from cooperative engagement.

Australian Synchrotron

Curtin University

Griffith University

Southern Cross University

 Chapter Two — Challenges and opportunities


How private money led to Nobel prize-winning discoveries in medicine and physiology.

Australian National University

Anglo Australian Observatory

Uni of Wollongong


University of Western Sydney


 Chapter Three — The changing face of scientific research


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Xxxx Xxxx

4 5

 Chapter Four — A world of research

The challenges facing the world today are too big to solve alone. How scientific cooperation can ensure a future for all.



Flinders University

Shelston IP

 Chapter Five — Australia’s scientific research system


Converting ideas into social and commercial benefits – the benefits of new ideas are extending well beyond the laboratory.

National Measurement Institute

Swinburne University of Technology

University of South Australia

University of New England



 Chapter Six — Strength in partnership


How multicultural Australia can contribute to closer scientific research cooperation between East and West.

Australian Antarctic Division


 Chapter Seven — International research

The greater the investment researcher mobility, the richer the global return.

CQ University



University of Western Australia

 Chapter Eight — Medical research


From penicillin to a vaccine for the human papilloma virus, local scientists are breaking new ground worldwide.


Brian Holden Vision

Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research

Peter Mac Cancer Centre

Walter & Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research


 Chapter Nine — Global leaders


Profiles of eminent Australian members of the international scientific research community.

Australian National University

La Trobe University

Queensland University of Technology

University of Adelaide

University of Tasmania


 Chapter Ten — Young Australian scientists


Rigour, intellect, discipline and irrepressible energy – a new generation of local scientists is ready to break fresh ground.

Bond University

RMIT University

University of Sunshine Coast

11 12

Chapter Eleven — Future science


How scientific training can benefit the commercial world.

Chapter Twelve — Who’s who The scientists who direct the future of science via the Australian Academy of Science Council.


Australian SCIENTIST



FOREWORD The Australian Academy of Science is an important body that promotes and supports science and scientists in Australia. Australia is strong in science. Our contribution to global scientific output is 10 times our contribution to the world’s population. We have world class researchers and institutions across a wide range of fields, from agriculture to zoology and much in between. Our universities are major sources of our scientific expertise — from the building of our national capacity to contributing to knowledge through our research and its application. The scientists celebrated within this publication, some of whom I know personally, are an inspiration to all of us, not just those of us with a passion for science. The narratives recorded in this book illustrate the immeasurable contributions of these Australians that stand to benefit humankind for generations to come. Science is global. Many of the big problems confronting us are ones where solutions require teams that transcend national boundaries. Our scientists play their part. Many of those featured in this book have made or enhanced their contributions through working with scientists elsewhere — whether it be working in partnerships from Australia, or by joining international research teams overseas and bringing their enhanced expertise to Australia. They continue to visit and be visited keeping Australian science ‘international’. Just as the achievements of my generation are built on the shoulders of earlier ones, so too will the achievements of Australia’s newest scientists one day take us beyond the horizons of those who nurtured them. We, as Australians must resolve to strengthen our support of today’s and tomorrow’s scientists, so that every one of them will have the opportunities and mentoring required to bring out the absolute best of their individual and collective capabilities. I am pleased to contribute to this celebration of Australian scientists and their achievements — may there be many more such scientific lives and many more celebrations. Professor Ian Chubb, Chief Scientist for Australia


Australian SCIENTIST

About the Australian Academy of Science INTRODUCTION The Australian Academy of Science was established by Royal Charter in 1954 by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Modelled on the Royal Society of London, it is the national institution representing science in Australia. Although the Academy receives some financial support from the Australian Government, it is an independent body and has no statutory obligation to government. The Academy’s objectives are to promote science through a range of activities. It has five major program areas: • recognition of outstanding contributions to science • national science education • public awareness of science

• international scientific relations

• science policy

STRUCTURE OF THE ACADEMY The work of the Academy is founded on the knowledge and experience of its fellows. The fellowship of the Academy is made up of about 420 of Australia’s top scientists, eminent in some branch of the physical or biological sciences. The Council manages the business of the Academy. The decisions of the Council are carried out by the secretariat in Canberra, overseen by an executive committee. Sixteen fellows are elected to the Academy each year by their peers, and occasionally corresponding members or additional fellows join through special elections. Fellows contribute to the Academy in an honorary capacity by serving on Council, committees and as advisers.

RECOGNITION OF EXCELLENCE The Academy encourages and rewards excellence in science through a number of medals and lectures. Outstanding research by both early-career and senior researchers is recognised through several annual awards, such as the Pawsey and Gottschalk medals.



PUBLIC AWARENESS OF SCIENCE The Academy produces reports, conference proceedings and other publications. The Academy shares editorial responsibility with CSIRO for 11 Australian journals of scientific research. Interviews with Australian Scientists is a DVD series in which some of Australia’s greatest scientists talk about their research and scientific achievements.

NATIONAL SCIENCE EDUCATION The Academy advises governments on science education and produces a number of educational materials. Nova: Science in the News is an online educational resource for schools. Another innovative initiative linking the teaching of science with the teaching of literacy in Australian primary schools is an Academy program called Primary Connections. The success of Primary Connections has recently led to the development of another science education program, Science by Doing, aimed at secondary school teachers and their students.

SCIENCE POLICY As an independent body of Australia’s leading research scientists, the Academy brings together experts from universities, industry and government to consider and report on scientific issues. The Academy supports 21 national committees that foster a designated field of science and serve as a link between Australian and overseas scientists in that field. The committees comment on proposals and advise on science policy. The Academy has published many reports and position statements on public issues such as stem cell research, genetic engineering and climate change. It also makes submissions to government ministers and parliamentary enquiries.

INTERNATIONAL SCIENTIFIC RELATIONS The Academy represents Australia on the International Council for Science and about 30 of its affiliated bodies. As well as organising several regular international symposia on a range of scientific issues, the Academy operates a program in international scientific collaborations to improve Australian access to global science and technology in North America, Europe and northeast Asia. The Academy is also active in organising significant national and international scientific conferences. Australian Academy of Science Gordon Street, Acton ACT 2601 GPO Box 783, Canberra ACT 2601 General enquiries: Telephone: + 61 2 6201 9400 11

Science diplomacy begins from the premise that scientific values of rationality, transparency and universality are the same the world over. 12

1 Australian science Strong recognition of the value of international scientific engagement and collaboration is a hallmark of Australian science. Led by the Australian Academy of Science and other scientific and professional organisations, this recognition reflects the international culture of scientific practice, the ethical imperative to share knowledge for the good of humanity, and the need to enrich Australian science and society through linkages with the world’s best science. The objectives of the Academy in

by Britain’s Royal Society and the American

promoting international scientific and

Association for the Advancement of Science.

technological collaboration are to improve

The report from that meeting, New frontiers

Australian access to science and technology,

in science diplomacy, published in January

to increase awareness of Australian research,

2010, begins from the premise that scientific

and to enhance research capabilities.

values of rationality, transparency and

There is also an emerging realisation that

universality are the same the world over and

international scientific engagement can make

can underpin good governance and build trust

an important contribution to “soft diplomacy”

between nations.

as the world’s societies address many issues

“Science provides a non-ideological

that require the sharing and implementation of

environment for the participation and free

scientific knowledge.

exchange of ideas between people, regardless

In 2009, delegates from 20 countries on all continents attended a meeting co-hosted

of cultural, national or religious backgrounds,” the report says.



“The brief is to try to make sure that Australia has greater influence on the work of ICSU, particularly to ensure that science is developed on an equitable basis worldwide.” Prof. Bruce McKellar

“The scientific community often works

in 2006 and based in Kuala Lumpur, ROAP’s

beyond national boundaries on problems of

priority areas are the ecosystem, human-

common interest, so is well placed to support

induced and natural hazards and disasters,

emerging forms of diplomacy that require non-

and sustainable energy.

traditional alliances of nations, sectors and nongovernmental organisations.” With a membership that includes 119 national scientific bodies and 30 international scientific unions, the International Council for Science

To further its interaction with ICSU, the Academy has formed a new committee, chaired by Professor McKellar, to focus on ICSU activities. “The brief is to try to make sure that Australia

(ICSU) is a premier vehicle for strengthening

has greater influence on the work of ICSU,

international science for the benefit of society.

particularly to ensure that science is developed

Because of its broad and diverse membership, ICSU is increasingly called upon to speak on behalf of the global scientific community and to

on an equitable basis worldwide for the benefit of societies worldwide. “If you look at what ICSU has been doing

act as an adviser in matters ranging from ethics

more recently, it has been emphasising the reach

to the environment.

of science into developing countries, building up

ICSU mobilises knowledge and resources to

scientific capacity in developing countries.”An

focus on activities in three areas: international

example of this work is a ROAP workshop in

research collaboration; science for policy; and the

Singapore last year, which brought together

universality of science. This is done though links

scientists from the region with expertise in the

with strategic partners, the scientific community,

fluid mechanics and geomechanics of natural

policy makers and the broader society.

disasters such as earthquakes, tsunami and

The Academy takes advice from its national committees for science to appoint delegates

cyclonic storms. “The people who took part are continuing

to the business meetings of the ICSU and its

to work in collaboration. That is the kind of

member unions. Professor Bruce McKellar of

small-scale contribution we have made in the

the University of Melbourne is currently chair

first few years — we are now trying to move to

of ICSU’s Regional Committee for Asia and

do more coordinated and long-term projects.”

the Pacific, which guides the Regional Office

Another forum for international scientific

for Asia and the Pacific (ROAP). Established


diplomacy is the InterAcademy Council,

Australian Science in the international context

created in 2000, which aims to mobilise the

for the exchange of ideas and experiences

best researchers across the globe to advise

among academies. It helps science academies

international bodies such as the United Nations

to achieve greater public presence within their

and the World Bank on the global challenges of

nation and region.

our time. The IAC recently released the reports

The IAP’s flagship program focuses on

Women for Science and Lighting the Way:

capacity building for younger and smaller

Toward a Sustainable Energy Future. Current

science academies, particularly those in

important issues for the IAC are emerging

developing countries. In addition, IAP supports

infectious diseases and water supply and quality.

projects that are coordinated by member

The governing board of the IAC comprises

academies and regional networks. The projects

the presidents of 15 academies of science

include digital knowledge and infrastructure,

and equivalent organisations (including the

science education, water research and

Academy), representatives of the InterAcademy

management, and biosecurity.

Panel on International Issues (IAP), the

The Academy has endorsed statements

International Council of Academies of

by the IAP on tropical forests and climate

Engineering and Technological Sciences,

change and on ocean acidification, joining over

and the InterAcademy Medical Panel of medical

50 academies from around the world to express

academies, plus the African Academy of

their concern over these issues.

Sciences and the Academy of Sciences for the Developing World.

The Federation of Asian Scientific Academies and Societies (FASAS), founded in 1984, brings

The goal of the IAP, a global network of over

together 15 scientific academies and societies

100 of the world’s science academies, is to help

from the Asian region. For the period 2010 to

member academies work together to advise

2012, the AAS is providing secretariat services

citizens and public officials on the scientific

to FASAS and the AAS president has assumed

aspects of critical global issues.

the presidency of FASAS.

Networks and links created by the IAP allow

FASAS emphasises the importance of S&T for

academies to raise both their public profile

development in the region, and the integration

among citizens and their influence among policy

of S&T into national development planning

makers. IAP organises international conferences,

and policymaking processes. To achieve these

sponsors workshops and serves as a forum

aims it focuses on the promotion of good



The Australian Academy of Science website,

teaching practices at all levels of science and

and knowledge of techniques that will stimulate

the importance of science and technology in

and advance Australian research, and to be

governance, business and everyday life.

involved in large international projects. The Academy’s international exchange

Bilateral engagement builds on the work of multilateral scientific organisations and

programs comprise scientific visits and

enables focused cooperation between scientists

exchanges to Asia, Europe and North America,

to address issues specific to national needs and

and also short-term, long-term and postdoctoral

capacities. The Academy’s bilateral activities

fellowships to Japan. Funding for the program

are substantially supported by the International

is derived from a variety of sources. The

Science Linkages (ISL) — Science Academies

Australian Government is a major contributor

Program, which is funded by the Department

through the DIISR-ISL program, which

of Innovation, Industry Science and Research.

contributes travel and living costs to support

A key component of the program is a series of

collaborative research between Australian

scientific symposia and workshops on global

scientists and technologists and their colleagues

issues, conducted in Australia and overseas.

in Europe, the US, Canada, Mexico, China,

The program gives Australian researchers the opportunity to collaborate with overseas

Japan, Korea and Taiwan. Scientific collaboration and engagement

colleagues, to widen research perspectives and

ultimately relies on relationships between

experience, to exchange ideas, to be recognised

individual scientists, and Australia’s long history

in the international arena, to gain information

as a provider of education in the sciences and


Australian Science in the international context

Scientific collaboration and engagement ultimately relies on relationships between individual scientists and offers a basis for enhancing its role in international collaboration.

other disciplines offers a basis for enhancing its

of southeast Asian alumni who studied under

role in international collaboration.

the auspices of the Colombo Plan, which was

The Academy’s immediate past-president,

established in 1949 by the seven founding

Professor Kurt Lambeck, has noted that

nations of Australia, Canada, Ceylon, India,

Australia is highly successful in attracting

New Zealand, Pakistan and the UK, to be

international students at the postgraduate

later joined by Burma, Cambodia, Indonesia,

level, a large proportion of whom study in

Japan, Laos, the Philippines, the US, Vietnam

science and engineering.

and Thailand.

“Australia could significantly expand its sphere

“With the benefit of hindsight, the Colombo

of influence in global science through a more

Plan could be seen as an opportunity for

systematic cultivation of the science alumni of

investment in not only intellectual capital, but

Australian universities,” Professor Lambeck says.

also soft diplomacy,” Professor Holmes said.

This opportunity was highlighted by Professor Andrew Holmes, the Academy’s Foreign Secretary, in an address to a conference hosted by the Royal Society in June 2010 on “Science Diplomacy — applying science and innovation to international challenges”. Professor Holmes said Australia has benefited in recent years from the very large numbers



Lighting the way for Australian research The Australian Synchrotron is helping Australian scientific and industrial researchers to achieve and retain positions at the forefront of their fields. Synchrotron science enables users to study the structure and properties of materials at unprecedented levels of detail. These technologies surpass conventional methods and help drive innovation across many areas of pure and applied research and industrial development. Enhanced access to synchrotron technologies is boosting Australia’s reputation in global scientific circles, enabling a stronger national contribution to the international development of advanced research capabilities and techniques, and attracting experts from around the globe to live and work in Australia. The Australian Synchrotron supports a broad array of scientific disciplines, including biosciences, medical research, drug development, environmental science,

The Australian Synchrotron supports a broad array of scientific

agriculture, minerals exploration and processing,

disciplines. Photo: Sandra Morrow.

advanced materials, engineering and forensics. In addition to supporting research by users who

a great combination of very high energy resolution,

visit from around the world, facility staff collaborate

high spatial resolution and large intensity”.

nationally and internationally in their own right. Research conducted at the Australian Synchrotron has contributed to the assembly of nanomaterials,

The Australian Synchrotron’s medical and imaging facility is being upgraded to become the most advanced instrument of its kind in the world.

improved cancer detection methods and alumina

The infrared microspectroscopy beamline is widely

extraction processes, progressed the development of

considered one of the world’s best in terms of its ability

advanced materials and antimalarial drugs, and helped

to obtain detailed nano-scale information on chemical

advance the understanding of processes involved in

bonding. A separate branchline, also considered

bacterial infection.

world-leading, has high resolution and far-infrared

The Australian Synchrotron’s nine world-

capabilities suited to studies of atmospheric gases.

class beamlines are all highly regarded by users.

The Australian Synchrotron is playing an important

A Melbourne-based scientist credits the high-

role in training the next generation of Australian

th ro ug h p ut m a c ro m o l e c u l a r b e a m l i n e w it h

scientists. The facility organises educational tours

revolutionising his research by providing access to

and professional development workshops and has

new methods for structure determination. Overseas

successfully embedded synchrotron science into high

researchers note that the microcrystallography

school curricula. This work provides inspiration to

beamline “takes 10 minutes to provide data that

budding scientists and has a positive effect on the

would otherwise take two to three days, and wouldn’t

broader community.

be as good”, and the soft x-ray beamline “offers 18

Australian Scientist

TURNING BRIGHT IDEAS INTO BRILLIANT OUTCOMES The Australian Synchrotron’s world-leading capabilities provide unique tools for analysing human tissue, plants, proteins, artefacts, fibres, fluids, gases, minerals, metals and many other diverse materials. Thousands of researchers from around Australia and New Zealand, along with others from further afield, are already using our facilities to advance their work. To find out how the Australian Synchrotron can help you achieve your

Artwork by Chris Henschke

objectives, visit our website.



Big expectations on a miniature scale. From within the spectacular new Resources and Chemistry Precinct at Curtin, Professor Julian Gale is rebuilding the fundamental structures of some of nature’s most complex creations to see what makes them tick. Throw the word ‘nanotechnology’ into polite conversation, and you’re likely to get a variety of reactions, many following a general pattern of apocalyptic prophecy and the ‘grey goo’ theory. But, as Professor Gale describes, there’s much work to be done on even understanding the fundamentals of how our world is put together on a molecular level. Our conversation conjures up a world in which scientists have been forced to see problems only on a macro scale – the smallest visible grain of sand still a monolith compared to the infinitesimal scales generated on Curtin’s custom software. “Working on a scale of individual atoms, we’re looking at how we can use virtual models and computing to solve physical science problems,” he explains. “Broadly, what we do is computational nanoscience. Within that, we have three main foci; clean energy, minerals and water.” These three areas are some of the most hot-button topics in the scientific world right now. From solid-state batteries to technologies for a hydrogen economy, the computer simulations developed by Gale and his team have the potential to instigate new developments in hundreds of future technologies. “The beauty of computer models is that you can look at hypothetical possibilities,” he explains of his work’s potential. “The experimentalist might say you’re living in cuckoo land, you’re off looking at fantastical things that can’t be made; but occasionally you come up with ideas that inspire them to go away and do something different and actually make these things in the real world. Experimentalists traditionally like a good challenge, and if you set a realistic one they’re pretty good at achieving it.” The disconnect between physical experimentation and virtual simulation has long been constrained by two important factors: computing power and the age of the field itself. Compared to hundreds of years of scientific experimental process, computation has barely existed before the 1950s, and is only now gaining the necessary processing power to render an accurate picture of extremely complicated natural systems, even for tiny fractions of a second. But Professor Gale is excited by the many recent successful applications of virtual computer models to real-world experimental science, and expects a surge of this technology in the coming years. In the meantime, the pioneering work done by the team in studying crystal growth – for which Professor Gale was recently awarded 20

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an Australian Research Council Professorial Fellowship – is already showing practical possibilities in the field. “Where computational nanoscience is starting to come into its own is in its application to specific real-world problems. Take the desalination plant at Kwinana. We have a situation where impurities in the seawater can collect on the reverse osmosis membrane. For example, dissolved carbon dioxide can grow into a limestone scale. This means the filter needs downtime to be cleaned, and more electricity to run it because the water needs to be forced through these blocked pores. But if we can understand how this problem occurs on the tiniest molecular level, we could potentially design a better membrane to suppress this process, or prevent it completely. It’s about being smarter about how we do things through thinking small.”

Australian Scientist

Dr Katherine Trinajstic Senior Research Fellow Department of Chemistry School of Science phenomenon of viviparity — or

has important implications for

reproduction by sexual activity

oil and gas exploration.

D r K a t h e r i n e Tr i n a j s t i c i s

and live birth, as opposed to

internationally known for her

the laying of eggs — occurred

research success is partly due

landmark discoveries in the

200 million years earlier than

to her application of recently

field of vertebrate palaeontology.

previously thought. She has

developed analytical methods

Her research involves analyses

also discovered fossils of

not previously used in fossil

of fossils she has recovered

primitive sharks and jawless

analysis. Her application of



fish in the Canning Basin of

synchrotron methods (using

geological formation in the

Western Australia — discoveries

synchrotron radiation for imaging)

Kimberley region of Western

important not only for the

and computerised tomography

Australia, and may lead to the

knowledge they provide about

(CT scans) to the study of fossils

formation soon being listed as

Australia’s past biodiversity, but

is significant because it avoids

a World Heritage Site.





Tr i n a j s t i c ’ s

also because they have enabled

damage to the fossil samples during

Her examinations of placoderm

other geological formations in

analysis, which previously was an

fossils have revealed that the

Australia to be dated, which

accepted risk.

Professor Igor Bray Director Institute of Theoretical Physics Faculty of Science and Engineering Stelbovics. The research solved a

known, means that physicists will

fundamental scattering problem

no longer rely on approximations

that had perplexed physicists for

to describe atomic collision

Professor Igor Bray has produced

more than 60 years. The CCC

systems. The reformulation of

breakthrough research in the

theory now provides a basis for

the underlying scattering theory

field of quantum mechanics,

advances in diverse scientific

provides a unified approach

specifically in the area of atomic

fields and industries — including

to such collisions, and applies

collision theory, which governs the

astrophysics, plasma displays,

generally across atomic, molecular,

ubiquitous interactions of particles

lasers, lighting and fusion energy.

nuclear and high-energy physics.

on the atomic scale.

Most recently, Bray’s team

The breakthrough was published

An Australian Research Council

within the Institute of Theoretical


(ARC) Professorial Fellow, Bray

Physics has resolved a foundational

of Annals of Physics, with an

became internationally known in

problem that has plagued quantum

editor’s foreword by the 2004

the 1990s for the convergent close-

mechanics since its inception in the

Nobel Prize-winning physicist

coupling (CCC) theory he developed

1920s. Resolving “the Coulomb

Professor Frank Wilczek.

with colleague Professor Andris

three-body problem”, as it is







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Australian Scientist

Professor Ron Quinn Eskitis Institute for Cell and Molecular Therapies Griffith University After obtaining his PhD from

leadership, the Institute established

novel compounds with drug-like

the University of New South

Nature Bank, a globally important

properties. Professor Quinn has

Wales (1970), Professor Quinn

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completed postdoctoral work

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natural product drug discovery,

at Arizona State University,

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Venture and Drugs for Neglected

He started at Griffith University

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set has over 200,000 high

was elected Fellow of the Australia

Professor in 1994. Professor

quality natural product fractions

Academy of Technological Sciences

Quinn was appointed Director of

derived from a library of more

& Engineering (2003) and received

the Eskitis Institute for Cell and

than 45,000 samples of plants

the R ACI Adrien Albert Award

Molecular Therapies in 2003.

and marine invertebrates from

(2004). In 2010, Professor Quinn

His research interests include

tropical Australia, Papua New

was honoured with the award of a

developing an understanding of

Guinea and China. The Nature

Member of the Order of Australia

molecular interactions involved

Bank platform enables faster and

for service to scientific research.

in biological processes. Under his

more successful identification of

Dr Rohan Davis Eskitis Institute for Cell and Molecular Therapies Griffith University

Dr Rohan Davis obtained his

at the Eskitis Institute of Cell and

Bachelor of Science with Honours

Molecular Therapies.

Dr Davis’ significant research contributions involve preserving

from the University of Melbourne

He has authored 59 publications

and continuing to develop Nature

(1992), and subsequently gained

in the fields of natural products and

Bank, discovering new anti-

several years of industry experience

medicinal chemistry, and currently

malarials and anti-trypanosomal

working for AstraZeneca. Awarded

holds one patent.

agents, and potential


a PhD from Griffith University

Like his colleague and mentor

compounds in drug discovery

in 2001, he then obtained two

Professor Quinn, Dr Davis’s

programs. Dr Davis is establishing

years post-doctoral experience at



an international reputation and has

the University of Utah, Salt Lake

developing an understanding of

been an invited speaker at natural

City, USA. Returning to Griffith

molecular interactions involved in

product meetings in China (2009)

University in 2003, Dr Davis is

biological processes via the Esktitis

and in the US (2010).

currently a Senior Research Fellow

Institute’s Nature Bank.




Professor Leigh Sullivan Professor of GeoScience Director of Southern Cross GeoScience, Southern Cross University Professor Leigh Sullivan is a

have on the health of the coastal

leading geoscientist with a high

areas around the globe that contain

Professor Sullivan is co-leading

international profile. He is a

acid sulfate soil. The research

an Australian team that is leading

co-director of Southern Cross

includes major field projects within

the world in the development

GeoScience. Professor Sullivan’s

tropical and temperate Australia,

of secure, low cost solutions

two key areas of research activity

as well as in the low-lying Mekong

to reduce global CO2 emissions.

are acid sulphate soils and

Delta of Vietnam where 20 million

These practical solutions work by

the health of waterways, and

people reside and grow crops and

enhancing the production of carbon

developing secure and practical

fish and shrimp on acid sulfate

trapped within the naturally-

carbon biosequestration solutions

floodplains. He is also leading major

produced microscopic silica

to reduce global CO2.

inland wetlands and rivers.

research projects in the Murray-

particles — known as plantstones

Professor Sullivan has instigated

Darling Basin examining the

— in crops, pastures, forestry and

research that is examining the likely

impacts of drought and acid sulfate


impacts that rising sea levels will

soil on the health of thousands of

Associate Professor Anja Scheffers Coastal geomorphologist Southern Cross University Australian Research Council Future Fellowship Dr Scheffers is particularly

and storms and the development

Associate Professor Scheffers,

interested in processes that shape

of long-term records of tsunamis/

a coastal geomorphologist at

and modify coastal landscapes over

cyclones from geological and

S o u t h e r n C ro s s U n i v e r s i t y ,

a variety of length and time scales

biological proxy evidence as

was named one of 200 Future

and the coupling and feedback

well as historical documentary

Fellows in 2009. Dr Scheffers

between such processes, their rates,


is the recpient of an Australian

and their relative roles, especially in

Her work is exploring linkages


Fu t u re

the contexts of variation in climatic

between Late Quaternary climate

Fellowship for a project which

and tectonic influences and in light

and landscape change focusing

will look at tropical cyclone

of changes due to human impact.

on past sea levels and the response


activity that has taken place

Dr Scheffers is investigating

over the past 7000 years in Western

past and modern marine physical


natural hazards such as tsunamis


of coastal ecosystems, particularly coral reefs.

Australian Scientist

Making a world of difference

At Southern Cross University we believe solving global challenges begins at home.

Inspired by our region, we are undertaking innovative research in fields such as geoscience, plant genetics, environmental science, tourism and regional development. Working in partnership with communities, government and industry, we are helping to build a strong and sustainable future for Australia.


CRICOS Provider Nos: NSW 01241G, QLD 03135E

“Less than 250 years ago, it was astronomy that provided them with the impetus to end their long isolation from the rest of the human species.� 26

2 Challenges

& opportunities

The story of Australian science is interwoven with the continent’s natural history and the history of its human societies. Modern humans arrived in Australia at

wherever they set foot. They invented hunting

least 40,000 years ago, around the same time

technologies to catch the prey they needed to

their counterparts ventured into Europe.

survive; they used fire to do what we would

But the colonisers of the great southern land

now call natural resource management.

found different challenges and opportunities to their cousins in the distant north. No Neanderthal rivals, no cloven-hoofed

Astronomy is a science that beguiles humans, wherever or whenever they live. Australian Aboriginal societies developed systems of

animals, no canine or feline predators, nor the

astronomy to explain what they saw in the skies

grasses that would enable northerners to develop

and guide their travel on land and sea. Less than

rice, wheat and other cereals as staple food

250 years ago, it was astronomy that provided


them with the impetus to end their long

Life had evolved differently on a continent which had been an island for at least 50

isolation from the rest of the human species. Europeans began encountering the great

million years since breaking from Gondwana

southern land more than 400 years ago,

and finally from Antarctica to push north

but its shape and size defied explorers and

towards the equator. This was a land largely

cartographers for almost two centuries, despite

populated by marsupials and reptiles living in

some scientific theories that a huge southern

dry rainforests, desert, grasslands and eucalypt

continent was necessary to balance the known

groves. Over many generations, the first

continents of the north. European science

Australians caused changes in the mix of flora

had deduced that the Earth was one of several

and fauna in their country, just as humans did

spherical planets that orbited the Sun. It was


Australian SCIENTIST

also able to predict that Venus would cross

Within two decades Arthur Phillip would

between Earth and Sun on 3 June 1769, and

lead the First Fleet to formally colonise

that timing the event from three points on the

Australia. Cook’s long voyage of scientific

Earth’s surface would enable astronomers to

and geographic discovery had instigated a

calculate the distance to the Sun.

second wave of human colonisation that would

So Captain James Cook was sent to the south

establish a new Australian society and science,

Pacific with a crew, including the first scientists

and again transform the continent’s landscape.

to ever encounter Australia. Cook’s mission observed the transit of Venus

Science would drive an unfolding discovery of the nature of the Australian continent and its

from Tahiti on the appointed day, while other

climate, as the transplanted society explored and

observations were made in Scandinavia and

settled into its new domain.

Canada to provide the data required for a major

That society and its science would slowly

scientific achievement and a big step towards

evolve from its British inheritance to develop

understanding the solar system.

a more distinctively Australian character in

After sailing west and circumnavigating

response to Australia’s distance from the rest of

New Zealand to establish that it was two

the world and the realisation that much about

islands, Cook’s ships encountered the southeast

Australia was unique. The roots of Australian

coast of Australia. On 28 April 1770 they

society and its science would nevertheless

anchored in a sheltered bay, which they explored

remain strongly recognisable while science

for a week. Cook recorded that the waters

contributed to the shaping of the early colonial

abounded with fish and the land was “diversified

societies and to the eventual establishment of

with woods, lawns and marshes”. The mission’s

Australia as a prosperous nation.

botanists, Joseph Banks and Daniel Solander,

The legacy of Joseph Banks would provide a

had found such a wealth of new plant species

foundation for high excellence in the disciplines

that he named the place Botany Bay.

of botany and biology as scientists studied a

Back in England after almost three years

“New World” of life forms, worthy of study for

at sea in an expedition which had cost

their own sake as much as for their relationship

the lives of more than 30 crewmen, Cook

with the rest of the living world.

said in a report to the Admiralty: “I flatter

Agriculture involved importing European

myself that the discoveries we have made,

models of herding and cropping, models

although not great, will apologise for the length

which still dominate our agricultural landscape.

of the voyage.”

Australian agricultural science has thus


Challengences and Opportunities

“Medical research… [a field] where excellence begets excellence. Clever people are attracted to where other clever people are.” Sir Gus Nossal

faced remarkable challenges and has

of science where Australia originally enjoyed

responded strongly, developing systems

no particular advantage, but in which our

and technologies to optimise output from

research achievements currently shine brightest

thin soils in capricious climates.

on the world stage.

Science has always underpinned the

The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute was

prosperity of the nation’s agricultural sector,

established in Melbourne in 1915 to undertake

from early innovations such as the stump-jump

medical research, funded by a bequest from

plough through to the work of contemporary

the estate of Walter Hall, who had migrated

molecular biologists who are modifying the

from England and made his fortune partly

genomes of plants to improve functions such

by investing in the Mount Morgan gold mine

as drought and salinity tolerance. In more

in Queensland. A few years later, the Baker

recent times, the scientific emphasis has been on

Institute was also established in Melbourne,

the need to ensure the long-term sustainability

funded by donations from Thomas Baker,

of agriculture by developing methods and

a qualified pharmacist who had made

technologies to conserve the environmental

his fortune by pioneering the supply of

assets that make agriculture possible.

photographic films in Australia and eventually

Discovering and extracting the mineral wealth beneath the continent’s ancient crust

forming Kodak Australia. With the benefit of hindsight, it can be said

also presented scientific and technological

that the establishment of the Hall and Baker

challenges that required particular Australian

institutes — both now at the forefront of global

solutions. The continent’s weathered regolith

medical research — seeded a synergistic

and its vast size meant that mining methods

process and a professional culture, which has

developed in other countries were either of little

enabled Australians to make four Nobel Prize-

use or required major modification.

winning discoveries in the fields of medicine

Australia’s first export was 50 tonnes of coal shipped to India from Newcastle in 1799.

or physiology. “A tradition grew up, and medical research

More than two centuries later, our minerals

is one of those fields where excellence begets

sector is Australia’s largest exporter, testimony

excellence. Clever people are attracted to

to the scientific and engineering expertise

where other clever people are,” says

developed over that time.

Sir Gus Nossal, a former director of the

Australia’s mineral wealth also played a part in fostering medical research, an area

Eliza Hall Institute and later president of the Australian Academy of Science. However,


Australian SCIENTIST

Australian science is fully responsive to these national challenges… developing innovative technologies to reduce the carbon footprint of energy production and other human activities.

while the philanthropic spirit that gave birth

such as the Cooperative Research Centre

to this tradition was certainly generous, its

program and tax incentives have been shaped to

munificence is not matched when it comes to

engage scientists and entrepreneurs more closely

funding Australian science today. Australia

and encourage Australian enterprises to invest in

performs poorly internationally on measures


of private donations to scientific research, as

They have had some success — the

it does when it comes to commercialising its

performance trends are positive — but there

own innovations, leaving science more reliant

is still more to do before Australia matches

on public funding in Australia than in most

its counterparts on these measures. There

comparable economies.

is also much for science to do as Australia

This can be attributed to some unique

addresses the challenges of the 21st century.

Australian characteristics — its relative youth

The Australian continent is one of the most

as an economy, the fact that many of its major

vulnerable to the effects of global warming,

enterprises are branches of multinationals

yet its economy is highly dependent on fossil

headquartered overseas, a relatively small

fuels as a source of energy and export revenue.

domestic market, and the large distances

Australia is also a major exporter of food as the

to overseas markets. Over recent decades,

world’s rapidly increasing human population

governments have concertedly fashioned science

threatens the integrity of environmental systems,

policy to overcome these obstacles. Initiatives

which support food production in many regions.


Challengences and Opportunities

As in the past, Australian science is fully responsive to these national challenges. Our atmospheric scientists, climatologists and meteorologists are at the forefront of global efforts to understand the world’s climate and the trajectory of change as greenhouse gas emissions increase. Australian researchers in many fields are developing innovative technologies to reduce the carbon footprint of energy production and other human activities in ways that must be affordable to all societies. And our agricultural scientists are leading the world’s effort to produce more food while using less land, water and fertiliser. The Australian scientist certainly is a valuable member of the national team.



Seed you can bank on The flora of the Australian Alps is facing an

focus will be making an important contribution to our

uncertain future because of the impacts of climate

effort to manage climate impact on alpine flora.

change. Now, researchers from the ANU Research School of Biology are leading a wide-ranging investigation on the reproductive ecology and demography of alpine flora with a focus on seeds.

Connecting water with wetland health

Part of what they learn will help managers establish

How much water does a wetland need to stay

repositories of seed (seed banks) to preserve genetic

vital? It’s far from an academic question because

diversity and assist with ecological restoration.

many of Australia’s inland wetlands no longer receive

“ Very little is known about the demographic,

the natural flooding that has sustained them over

physiological and genetic changes that will occur

thousands of years. And it’s a question that Sue

in Australian alpine plant populations as temperature

Powell has been grappling with for many years,

and CO 2 concentrations rise,” says Dr Adrienne

first as a scientific officer with the NSW government,

Nicotra, the lead researcher on the project. “Nor

and more recently as a PhD scholar with the

do we know the characteristics of species that will

Integrated Catchment Assessment Management

be most affected, or how we might manage for

Centre (iCAM) at ANU.

these impacts.”

Using satellite imagery and applying remote sensing

While the project is still in its first year it’s already

techniques, Ms Powell has been studying flood

collected seed from around a third of the plant species

dynamics out on the wetland and analysing how the

found in Australia’s alpine region. Given the serious

vegetation responds. She then models this information

threat climate change poses to flora of the Australian

to explore what might happen given different amounts

Alps, there’s a real urgency in the task. However,

of environmental flow. The investigation will ultimately

the researchers are confident their work and its seed

inform policy development and how decisions are made on water allocation. There’s a lot at stake when it comes to decisions on water allocation across most of regional Australia, and especially along the Gwydir. Water is the key environmental variable in this region. It’s the lifeblood of the wetlands but it’s also the key input to the profitability of the surrounding cotton industry. The analysis and modelling Ms Powell is carrying out will enable managers of the nation’s valuable water resources to be more confident about the impacts of the allocations they make.


Australian Scientist

Julie Smith Health Economist and Research Fellow Australian Centre for Economic Research on Health, Australian National University Dr Julie Smith, a health

will involve asking employers to

Such a policy would help prevent

economist and research fellow

describe the advantages gained

disease and help mothers reconcile

at the Australian Centre for

b y p ro v i d i n g f l e x i b l e w o r k

labour force participation with

Economic Research on Health at

arrangements designed to enable

protecting their own and their

the Australian National University,

breastfeeding mothers to return

children’s health from premature

is working with a team of researchers

to employment gradually, and to


and the Australian Breastfeeding

take time off during the work day

T h e re s e a rc h p a r t n e r s h i p

Association (ABA) to generate new

to express milk for their baby or

also involves adapting a highly

knowledge on how to strengthen

breastfeed their baby.

successful series of knowledge

community and policy support for


exchange seminars run by ABA

mothers combining breastfeeding

employed mothers to continue



each year for health professionals

with employment.

breastfeeding will reduce adverse

in cities and regional centres

The study, which is being

impacts of genetic, social and

around Australia to engage with

supported by an Australian

environmental factors predisposing

human resource managers and

Research Council Linkage Grant,

infants and children to ill health.

childcare workers.

Jamie Pittock PhD scholar Fenner School of Environment and Society Australian National University Institute of Medical Research

Climate change is invariably

mitigation and adaptation policies

committed to tackling climate

described as a major policy problem.

that may greatly increase impacts

change. He says government officials

Most decision makers immediately

on water resources and freshwater

largely accept that climate change is

think of the challenging task of

ecosystems, as evidenced by rising

real, while politicians in many other

justifying the significant short-

levels of hydroelectricity and biofuel

countries are still debating the issue.

term costs of taking action to avoid

production. To test his theory,

Pittock observes that China, like

global calamity for the welfare of

he has been conducting research

Australia, does struggle often to

future generations. Jamie Pittock,

into the best ways to integrate

implement policies that address

a PhD scholar at the Fenner School

climate, river management and

climate change. However, he is

of Environment and Society at the

water policies, based on six WWF

hopeful that current academic

Australian National University,

projects in China, India, Tanzania,

endeavours will lead to a solution.

sees another side to the problem.

lower Danube, Mexico and Brazil.

Pittock believes many govern-ments

Pittock is convinced that China’s

are advocating climate change

scientists and authorities are 33


Dr Chris Lidman ARC Future Fellow Australian Astronomical Observatory After completing his PhD at the

astronomical instrumentation

awards, including the 2007

Australian National University

and in developing observatory

Gruber Prize in Cosmology.

in 1994, Dr Chris Lidman moved

operations at both observatories.

Even though a decade has now

to Chile to work at the European

In 1996 Dr Lidman joined the

passed since the effects of Dark

Southern Observatory (ESO),

Supernova Cosmology Project

Energy were first noted, its

first as an ESO fellow based

(SCP), in which he now plays a

physical nature is still unknown.

at the La Silla Obser vatory,

leading role. In 1999 the SCP

It is one of the biggest mysteries of


modern physics.


published a landmark paper

astronomers to work at the





showing that the universe is

In 2010 Dr Lidman returned

ESO Very Large Telescope, located

dominated by an unknown form of

to Australia to take up a Future

on Cerro Paranal in Northern Chile.

energy (now called Dark Energy),

Fellowship at the Australian

During the 15 years he worked

which is causing its expansion to

Astronomical Observatory.

at the observatories, he played


a central role in commissioning

The discovery has led to many

Dr Gayandhi De Silva Researcher Australian Astronomical Observatory

European Southern Observatory

stars. It forms the basis of the field

Born in Sri Lanka, Dr Gayandhi

(ESO) in Chile, supporting science

of “galactic archaeology”, which is

De Silva migrated to Australia

operations at the Cerro Paranal

uncovering the origins and travels

in 1994. Initially, Dr De Silva

observatory. She moved to ESO’s

of the stars that make up our

w a s i n t e re s t e d i n p u r s u i n g

headquarters in Germany in 2008.


mathematics, but after enjoying

While at ESO, Dr De Silva and

Dr De Silva returned to Australia

a summer vacation at the Siding

her colleagues used the ESO’s

in 2010 to take up a position

Spring Observatory in NSW she

Ultraviolet and Visual Echelle

with the Australian Astronomical

chose observational astronomy as

Spectrograph to investigate the

Observatory. She is the Project

her professional career.

chemical composition of star

Scientist for HERMES, a high-


resolution spectograph being built

Dr De Silva obtained her PhD in Astronomy from Mount Stromlo

De Silva’s work validated the

by the AAO, which will be the next

Observatory, part of the Australian

technique of “chemical tagging”

major instrument for the Australian

National University. Following her

of stars—that is, obtaining unique

astronomical community.

PhD studies, she worked at the

chemical identifiers for individual


Australian Scientist

The Australian Astronomical Observatory. New name, same starring role. In the 1960s, scientists and politicians in the United Kingdom and Australia took the farsighted decision to build the first major modern telescope in the southern hemisphere. At the time it was commissioned, the Anglo-Australian Telescope was arguably the most sophisticated optical telescope in the world—a landmark in the technological development of both countries. In 2008, an independent review found that it was still the most productive 4-metre telescope in the world, and one of the top five telescopes of any size. The observatory that operates the telescope is now entering a new chapter in its history. On 1 July the Anglo-Australian Observatory became the Australian Astronomical Observatory, a division of the Commonwealth Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research. But although now under the sole stewardship of Australia, the AAO continues to welcome astronomers from all around the globe for partnerships in discovery.



Dr Zenobia Jacobs Centre for Archaeological Science University of Wollongong Doctor Zenobia Jacobs is an

reliable timeline for modern human

on the important turning points

archaeologist and Australian

evolution in South Africa, but

in human evolution and what

Research Council (ARC) Queen

her current interests also include

factors triggered the first wave of

Elizabeth II Research Fellow in

archaeological questions in other

human migrations out of Africa

the Centre for Archaeological

parts of Africa and the world,

to populate the rest of the world,

Science and School of Earth

as well as geological topics such

including Australia.

and Environmental Sciences.

as sea-level change for one of her

Her technical speciality is

ARC-funded projects,

In 2009, Dr Jacobs was the recipient of a L’Oréal Australia

geochronology, with a focus on the

Dr Jacobs is generating

For Women in Science Fellowship

development of optically stimulated

high-resolution chronologies

and was awarded the Sir Nicholas

luminescence dating methods

for when and where Homo

Shackleton Medal for outstanding

for individual sand-sized grains

sapiens first showed signs of

young Quaternary scientists by the

of quartz and their application

symbolic behaviour, and whether

International Union for Quaternary

to archaeological questions of

Neanderthals developed similar

Research (INQUA).

global significance. Her work

behaviours independently. Such

has concentrated on providing a

information will help shed light

Professor Gordon Wallace Intelligent Polymer Research Institute University of Wollongong Professor Gordon Wallace’s

(ARC) Federation Fellow, is

named NSW Scientist of the Year

research interests include organic

currently Research Director of the

(Chemistry) in 2008; appointed

conductors, nanomaterials and

ARC’s Centre of Excellence for

as a Professor in the World Class

electrochemical probe methods of

Electromaterials Sciences (ACES).

University by the South Korean

analysis and their application in the

Gordon received the Inaugural

Government in 2009; and received

development of intelligent polymer

Polymer Science and Technology

the SPIE Smart Materials Research

systems. A current focus is the

Award from the Royal Australian

Lifetime A chievement Award

development of biocommunications

Chemical Institute (R ACI) in

(USA) in 2009.

from the molecular to skeletal

1992; the R ACI Stokes Medal

Gordon is an elected Fellow

domains in order to improve

for Research in Electrochemistry

of the Australian Academy of

human performance via medical

in 2004; and the HG Smith

Science, the Australian Academy

bionics. He is recognised as a

Memorial award from the RACI

of Technological Sciences and

pioneer in the emerging field of

in 2008. He was awarded an ETS

Engineering, the Institute of

nano bionics. Gordon Wallace,

Walton Fellowship by the Science

Physics (UK) and the RACI.

an Australian Research Council

Foundation Ireland in 2003;


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Australian Scientist

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Australian SCIENTIST





Dr Ivan Greguric Head of Research and Innovation ANSTO Life Sciences

Dr Ivan Greguric graduated with a BSc

doubled in size to over 20 members, and significant

(Hons) in Chemistry prior to being awarded a PhD

investment was made in radiochemistry equipment,

in synthetic chemistry at University of Western

alongside the development of 18F radiolabeling

Sydney. After completing his doctorate, Dr Greguric

and automation.

was employed by Schering-Plough Animal Health

During his decade at ANSTO, Dr Greguic’s

in animal health care research, where he formulated

role has evolved into that of a facilitator and

and developed animal pesticide products. His duties

builder of core radiopharmaceutical competencies

included HPLC methods development and validation,

in infrastructure, radiolabelling mythologies/

drug feasibility trials, pharmacokinetics, drug safety

techniques and staff training. He has been involved

trials, protocol report preparation and scale-up

with collaborations specifically linked to French

of lead/final formulations for plant manufacture.

organisations, most Australian universities and

After working at Schering-Plough, Dr Greguric

key nuclear medicine and PET centres.

participated in radioisotope research as an

Dr Greguric’s research activities include participating

executive post-doctoral fellow in the ARI research

in the PBR project led by Andrew Katsifis with a

group at ANSTO (now known as ANSTO Life

CRC in biomedical imaging development. He is the

Sciences), under the guidance of Bill Burch, on the

primary inventor of a melanoma imaging agent [18F]

Recovery of 201Tl at the National Medical Cyclotron

MEL050 (CRCBID), the first human study of which

during 2000.

was conducted at Peter Mac Cancer Centre in June A N S TO

2010. He has also assisted with the development of an

radiopharmaceutical group led by Andrew Katsifis,






amino acid radiotracer [18F]-FPM (CRCBID) which

working primarily as a synthetic chemist in the

is headed for its first human clinical study, in late 2010.

drug targeted synthesis of radiopharmaceuticals

At present his research time is focused in the

for use in imaging and therapeutic applications

development of Iodobenzamides compounds for

in cancer and neuroscience. He subsequently

melanoma therapy (CRCBID), development of

developed skills in radiolabelling I123, I125 and

caspase-3 (apoptosis) radioligands and the broad

Tc99m with proteins, peptides and small molecules

development of metallo chelation ligands for Ga68,

and made the transition from synthetic chemist

Lu177 and Zr89 complexation in partnership with

to competent radiochemist.

Peter Barnard at the La Trobe University.

Over the next five years, Dr Greguic focused on the development of the ANSTO radiochemistry team’s capability. During this period, the group 42

Australian Scientist

Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation • OPAL research reactor • Neutron scattering • Nuclear medicine for medical treatment and diagnosis • Material stresses and strains • Managing radioactive waste • Managing national facilities • Medical research • Air pollution monitoring • Fruit fly irradiation • Radiation detection • Silicon irradiation • National security • Climate change research • Carbon dating • Nanotechnology • Water dating 43

For more information about ANSTO visit or call 02 9717 3111


Professor David Tissue Centre for Plants and the Environment Professor Tissue is an international

around the world. He operates

determine the mechanisms that

expert on the effects of climate

a precipitation manipulation

re g u l a t e a n d i n t e g r a t e t h e

change on ecosystems. His current

experiment in the desert at

developmental and physiological

research on plant response to

Big Bend National Park in Texas

processes that influence leaf

changes in global climate primarily

and is a close collaborator with the

level carbon balance and plant

considers the interactive effect

USDA, working on water stress

growth from the cell to the

of elevated CO 2 and associated

response in crops including peanut.

ecosystem level. This information

e n v i ro n m e n t a l f a c t o r s ( e . g .

In addition, Professor Tissue

will be used to determine the impact

temperature, nutrients and water)

was a founding member of

of climate factors on carbon and

on leaf level physiology and its

Pre c i p N e t , a n i n t e r n a t i o n a l

water flux and ultimately, on growth

implications for plant growth.

consortium of scientists studying

and in natural and agricultural ecosystems.

He has worked at Free Air

the impact of variable rainfall on

CO 2 Exchange (FACE) sites in

native and agricultural ecosystems.

forest and desert environments

Professor Tissue’s goal is to

Associate Professor Ian Anderson School of Natural Sciences University of Western Sydney

Associate Professor Ian Anderson’s

a Life Sciences Research Award

microscope facility established

work centres on the molecular

from the NSW Office for Science

within the Centre for microbial and

ecology of soil micro-organisms.

and Medical Research.

plant sciences research. Associate

He has particular interest in soil

In collaboration with Professor

Professor Anderson was named

fungi, including those that form

Cairney, he is also developing

ProSPER.Net-Scopus 2009 Asia

mycorrhizal associations with

innovative approaches, based

Pacific Young Scientist of the

the roots of plants.

on fluorescent in situ hybridisation

Year in the area of agriculture and


natural resources and received the

His current research is focused



on determining the effect of climate



NSW Young Tall Poppy Science

change on the structure and activity

at the cellular level, the nature of the

Award in 2008 for his excellence in

of eucalypt forest soil microbial

interaction between basidiomycete

research achievements and passion

communities, and the potential role

fungi and roots of Australian

for communicating science.

of soil microbes in increasing soil

Ericaceae. This research will utilise

carbon sequestration. It is funded by

a PALM laser microdissection



Australian Scientist

Climate Change and Energy Research at the University of Western Sydney

UWS has established one of Australia’s largest and most comprehensive research facilities, following the awarding of a $40 million grant in 2009. This project is an initiative of the Australian Government, being conducted as part of the Nation-Building Economic Stimulus Package. It supports Australia’s response to climate change – assisting the nation to adapt to a carbon-constrained economy and driving innovation in developing energy alternatives. The new national Climate Change and Energy Research Facility (CCERF) at UWS will act as a beacon for the best and brightest climate change and energy researchers from around Australia and the world. The integrity of excellent teaching and research, the initiative to explore new horizons and the responsibility to create an environment where innovation thrives are key drivers in advancing the University’s mission. If you have any enquiries about the Climate Change and Energy Research Facility – perhaps45you are interested in joining or collaborating with UWS – please email for further information. 04/08/2010 CHS2061

Cross-disciplinary collaboration will be crucial to achieve technological advances, particularly in the health and allied health fields. 46

4 A world of research The world is changing rapidly, as is the way we conduct research and development. Australian Science demands more collaboration, especially international collaboration. Recently, Australia’s Commonwealth

To ensure successful outcomes and

Science and Industrial Research Organisation

achieve impact in these endeavours, we will

(CSIRO) undertook a global foresight activity.

need much stronger collaboration between

The report from this project, “Our Future

research groups. Particular emphasis will

World: An analysis of global trends, shocks

be on both cross-disciplinary collaboration

and scenarios”, identified a number of global

and international collaboration. Cross-

research trends that could be amalgamated into

disciplinary collaboration will be crucial to

five “megatrends”. One of these trends was

achieve technological advances, particularly

summarised as “More from Less” and relates

in the health and allied fields. A good

to a trend of increasing demand for a depleting

Australian example of the impact that cross-

natural resource base due to population and

disciplinary collaboration can yield is Bionic

economic growth. It will become paramount

Vision Australia, which is a partnership of

that these natural resources (such as energy,

Australia’s leading researchers whose aim

minerals, water and land for food production)

is to develop a bionic eye. This requires a

be used in the most efficient manner. Their

team of experts from a number of different

utilisation will be increasingly constrained by

disciplines and brings together the leading

the impact of a changing climate. Thus, the link

experts in such fields as vision science,

between energy, water, food and climate will be

materials biocompatibility, wireless integrated

a dominant strategic research theme.

circuits, ophthalmology and bio-engineering.






Relative Citation Impact


European Union



USA 30


Asia Pacific


20 1.00 0.50
















Collaborations with USA (not involving Europe)

00 1990

















Collaborations with Europe (not involving USA) Source: Thompson Scientific National Science Indicators

Collaborations involving both Europe and USA Australian Publications with not International Collaborations

Figure 1. Relative citation impact – science citation index publications 1991–2005

Figure 2. Contribution of the USA, European Union and Asia

Source: FEAST 2009, “A Bibliometric Analysis of Australia’s International Research

Pacific regions to World Science output, 1990–2004.

Collaboration in Science and Technology: Analytical Methods and Initial Finding”, Discussion Paper 1/09.

Another example of the need to foster cross-

(SKA) telescope, which will be the largest

disciplinary research is the CSIRO National

and most sensitive radio telescope ever built.

Flagship program. National Research

The SKA project currently involves more than

Flagships are large-scale multidisciplinary

30 institutes in 15 countries, with Australia

research partnerships that harness world-

short-listed as one of the final two countries in

class expertise to tackle national priorities.

contention to host the SKA.

Indeed, in a recent review of the Flagships,

Scientific research and technological

it was concluded “Flagships offer the most

development are, by their very nature,

promising mechanisms yet to drive large-scale

international activities. New research often

activity addressing Australia’s national research

builds on the results of work undertaken

priorities in a collaborative, cooperative and

previously in another country. Australia

intensively managed manner”.

accounts for about two per cent of the World’s

International collaboration is increasingly

research effort. So, international research

important in addressing global challenges and

collaboration is important in order to tap into

for making the most efficient use of physical

the other 98 per cent.

infrastructure and knowledge capital. Some

The relative citation impact of Australian

good examples of large-scale international

research undertaken in collaboration with

collaboration are the CERN Large Hadron

partners in other countries is significantly

Collider (LHC), where more than half of the

higher than research where such collaboration

world’s particle physicists, representing 85

is not involved (see Figure 1).

nationalities and more than 500 universities,

More remarkably, the impact is almost

do research; and the Square Kilometre Array

tripled when there are both European and




Asia Pacific


European Union

30 USA



















Source: Thompson Scientific National Science Indicators

Figure 3. Contribution of the USA, European Union and Asia Pacific regions to World Material Science output, 1990–2004.

USA collaborators. This provides yet another

and France. The Australian Government’s

example of the importance of international

National Innovation Agenda, Powering

research cooperation.

Ideas, notes “Australia has everything

International research collaboration enables

to gain from improving connections within

Australian researchers and their students to

the national innovation system and expanding

acquire new knowledge that may be applied

its participation in international research

in Australia. It also enables the application

and innovation networks”.

of Australian knowledge to the needs of other

The performance of our neighbours in the

countries. This can create opportunities for

Asia Pacific region is changing dramatically.

the export of products and services.

It is therefore important for Australia to

Research equipment and techniques are

collaborate with them. Both India and China

constantly evolving. International research

are emerging as economic powerhouses and

collaboration helps Australian researchers to

much of this future growth will be fuelled by

keep up to date by accessing new techniques

an emphasis on science and technology.

and equipment in other countries. Experience

Indeed, it can be seen in overall science

with new equipment in overseas laboratories

metrics that, whilst the USA and Europe have

helps our researchers to determine what

experienced a decline or plateau in global

is needed here. For example, Australia’s

science output, the Asia Pacific region continues

investment in a leading-edge synchrotron was

to grow (Figure 2). This is further exemplified

informed by a sizeable group of Australian

in the material science domain where the Asia

researchers that had gained experience with

Pacific region is now the dominant global engine

synchrotrons in Japan, the USA, the UK

of research and development (Figure 3).



“In an interconnected global economy, collaboration between countries and across disciplines will be crucial to achieving success.”

China is emerging as a world leader in science and technology. The challenge for Australia will be to overcome the challenge of different cultures and languages to produce good collaborative outcomes. In conclusion, in an increasingly interconnected global economy, collaboration between countries and across disciplines will be crucial to achieving successful outcomes in our research endeavours, particularly in major strategic issues such as the nexus between energy, water, food and climate. Jason Mitchell, a neuroscientist from Harvard articulated it succinctly when he said: “The most dramatic innovation introduced with the roll-out of our species is not the prowess of individual minds but the ability to harness that prowess across many individuals.” The Dish’ Radio Telescope at Parkes, NSW. Photo by: David McClenaghan, CSIRO


One of these young adults may have the power to change the future.

We believe the next generation of Australian scientists are key to the future health and prosperity of this country. To this end, CSL is committed to supporting the medical research community, and to fostering the next generation of medical researchers.

CSL is proud to support the medical research community through our partnerships with NYSF, UROP and AIPS.

51 Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program

CSL Limited A.B.N. 99 051 588 348. 45 Poplar Road, Parkville, VIC 3052, Australia. CSL is a trademark of CSL Ltd.


Professor Ralph Martins Foundation Chair of Aging and Alzheimer’s Head of the Centre of Excellence for Alzheimer’s Disease Research and Care Professor Martins is Edith Cowan

Alzheimer’s disease. He currently

PhD students such as molecular

University’s Foundation Chair of

leads a large multidisciplinary

biologists, psychologists and

Ageing and Alzheimer’s, and Head

team over 40 researchers that

exercise physiologists. Professor

of the Centre of Excellence for

undertakes research into diagnosis

Martins is also Director of Research

Alzheimer’s Disease Research and

and biomarker discovery, basic

for the McCusker Foundation, a not-

Care. One of the world’s leading

science into understanding disease

for-profit organisation established

researchers into Alzheimer’s

mechanisms and development of

to enhance medical research into

disease, his motivation for starting

prevention and treatment strategies.

Alzheimer’s disease in Western

research into Alzheimer’s disease

This dedication to world-leading

Australia. Edith Cowan University

was a result of his father-in-law

research resulted in him being

Vice-Chancellor Professor Kerry

being diagnosed with the disease.

named WA Australian of the Year

Cox said that research undertaken

for 2010.

at Australian universities can have a

In the mid-1980s, Professor Martins was a member of a Perth

Professor Martins finds his

real and tangible impact on the lives

research team that discovered

association with Edith Cowan

and wellbeing of people around the

the beta amyloid protein, which

University provides a wide range


accumulates in the brain of

of specialist skills via academic

sufferers and is the foundation of

collaborators, as well as through

Associate Professor Daniel Galvão Director of the Vario Health Institute Edith Cowan University strengths in areas related to exercise

effects and improve quality of life in

science, health promotion, human

prostate cancer survivors.

A s s o c i a t e Pro f e s s o r D a n i e l

biology, nursing and palliative care,

Internationally, Associate

Galvão is the Director of the

nutrition, occupational therapy,

Professor Galvão has been the

Vario Health Institute, which

psychology and public health

Australian researcher contributing

facilitates collaboration between

to promote a holistic approach

to the writing committee for the

researchers, educators, industry

to understanding health and

influential American College

and government to optimise

lifestyle issues.

of Sports Medicine (ACSM)

health and improve quality of

Associate Professor Galvão

Consensus Statement on Exercise

life for people of all ages, within

was recognised in the 2009

Guidelines for Cancer Survivors,

differing social, cultural, political

New Independent Researcher

which is now the guideline for

and environmental contexts. Vario

Infrastructure Support (NIRIS)

all exercise assessment, and the

brings together a significant group

Awards. His research has facilitated

prescribed model for cancer

of research centres, internationally

the use of exercise as an important

management in North America and

recognised investigators and local

strategy to mitigate physical

much of the world.

industry partners with recognised

function-reducing treatment side


Australian Scientist

ReseaRch and innovation at ecU Making a diffeRence At Edith Cowan University (ECU), our focus has only ever been on research that makes a difference. That’s why we continue to develop world-class research and innovation which not only engages with communities, but which creates strong social, economic, environmental and cultural impacts too. Right now, we welcome collaborative research partnerships in the following areas: • Aboriginal Health, Education and Community • Business and Society • Education • Engineering and ICT • Environment and Sustainability • Health and Wellness • Security, Law and Justice • Society and Community • Communications, Humanities, Media and Creative Arts Start the journey and reach your potential. Call 134 ECU (134 328), email or visit our website.


303 ECU5219 CRICOS IPC 00279B


Dr Kathryn Burdon Post Doctoral Fellow Department of Ophthalmology School of Medicine Flinders University Dr Burdon followed her Bachelor

Australia to take up a position in

do so. The work currently covers

of Science degree, majoring in

the Department of Ophthalmology

a variety of diseases, including

biochemistry and microbiology,

at Flinders University in 2005. Her

g l a u c o m a , ke re t o c o n u s a n d

with a PhD at the Menzies Centre

research is currently supported

diabetic eye disease, as well as work

for Population Health Research

by two large grants from the

on cataracts in children.

(now the Menzies Institute) at


In 2009, Dr Burdon received a

the University of Tasmania, in

Dr Burdon’s research aims to

Young Tall Poppy Science Award.

the newly formed Department of

determine the genetic risk factors

The award recognises the achieve-

Genetic Epidemiology. She then

for common blinding diseases.

ments of South Australian scientists

spent two years working on the

More specifically, it is attempting

under 35. They are selected on the

genetics of heart disease in diabetes

to identify which genes can cause

basis of their research revelations

at a large medical school in North

which blinding diseases and

and their passion for communicating

Carolina, USA, before returning to

ultimately to understand how they

their work.

Dr Amanda Ellis Senior Lecturer in Chemistry/ Nanotechnology School of Chemical & Physical Sciences Flinders University After completing her PhD at the

her carbon nanotube modification

Dr Ellis’ research involves the

University of Technology Sydney

work was for conductive films

study of science at the nanoscale

seven years ago, Dr Ellis took up

and solar cells. Awarded a

(less than one billionth of a metre).

two postdoctoral positions in the

New Zealand Foundation of

Her work primarily involves

United States.

Research Science and Technology

the modification of surfaces for

The first was at Rensselaer

fellowship at Industrial Research

applications in desalination,

Polytechnic Institute (RPI),

Ltd, New Zealand, she worked

forensic science and biosensing.

where her nanotechnology work

on microfluidics (in particular

She has projects focusing on

pertained to carbon nanotube

switchable surfaces) and carbon

fingerprinting using quantum

functionalisation and surface

nanotubes. An academic at Flinders

dots, carbon nanotubes for water

modification for microelectronic

University since 2006, Dr Ellis has

filtration and DNA profiling in

device applications for IBM. The

54 peer-reviewed publications, five

forensic terrorist and crime scenes.

second position was at New Mexico

full patents and attracted over $4

State University, where the focus of

million in research funding.


Australian Scientist

g n i t s Inve n

s a e id i

Robust research is vital to understanding our world. It will help unlock the answers to the medical, environmental, economic and social challenges we will face in the future. At Flinders University we are making a major investment in the next generation of young researchers, giving them the knowledge and skills to rise to those challenges Supporting young researchers

Harnessing new talent

Flinders has programs specifically designed to nurture and mentor young researchers, encouraging their growth and development, and turning ideas into outcomes.

More broadly, Flinders University continues to build on its excellent reputation for research with an accelerated employment program for emerging leaders in academia, supporting staff to become more research-active, expanding industry and academic relationships, and strengthening international research collaborations.

The University recently recognised the outstanding results, and future potential, of nine young men and women with the Vice-Chancellor’s inaugural Awards for Early Career Researchers in which cash rewards accompanied the accolades. They included medical scientist Dr Kathryn Burdon (pictured) who is researching the genetic causes of diabetes-related eye disease.

Family Friendly Fellowships It is a feature of active research and engagement with one’s peers that young researchers travel to attend conferences and add to the pool of ideas, from which solutions can emerge.

A vibrant, supportive and sustaining culture is fundamental to successful research. With innovative programs that bring out the best in its young men and women, Flinders University is making the investment in ideas that will deliver dividends for society at large.

Flinders University has introduced a bold new concept of Family Friendly Fellowships. These Fellowships allow staff who are carers to travel and alleviate the stress of conference participation on families by facilitating travel for partners and children or providing support for family members who remain at home while a carer is away. The Fellowships will also facilitate re-entry to the workforce after parental leave.


inspiring achievement CRICOS Provider Number: 00114A

All participants operate in an environment shaped by the culture and broader political economy.


5 Australia’s scientific research system “The national innovation system is an open network of organisations interacting with each other in an environment that stimulates and regulates their activities and interactions.” The Australian Innovation System Report 2010.

Australia has a long history of successful

the workings of the engine room of Australian

innovation, from the boomerang to wireless

innovation and plot its development and

local area networking, from the stump-jump

performance, primary components of the system

plough to the black box flight recorder. The

are businesses, universities, publicly funded

spark that ignites innovation is ultimately

research organisations and governments.

provided by people, but their new ideas can

On the second tier are education, finance,

only be developed into products and services

infrastructure and other organisations that

for social or commercial benefit if they are

facilitate networks and provide financial and

supported by a national innovation system.

human capital.

According to the Innovation System Report, the first of an annual series designed to reveal

“All participants operate in an environment shaped by the culture and broader political



“We are near the top of OECD when it comes to government funding of research. What we don’t have is generous funding from the philanthropic sector and the private sector.”



economy, which influences the scale, direction

39.1 per cent of Australian companies reported

and relative success of all innovative activities,”

undertaking innovation, a rise of 6.4 percentage

the report says.

points compared to the previous year.

While innovation provides the spark, the fuel that drives this engine is money. Expenditure by Australian businesses on

This trend is buoyed by the Commonwealth, which allocates around a quarter of its innovation spending to encourage business investment,

research and development (BERD) generally

including R&D tax incentives. The remainder is

accounts for around 60 per cent of Australia’s

shared across universities, research agencies and

gross expenditure on research and development

programs that support international collaboration,

(GERD), followed by the Commonwealth

and largely distributed via the Australian Research

which contributes around 30 per cent,

Council and the National Health & Medical

with the remainder coming from state and

Research Council. In 2009-10 the Commonwealth

territory governments, overseas sources and

budgeted $8.6 billion for science and innovation,

philanthropic support.

a 25 per cent increase compared to 2008-09.

For a number of reasons, particularly the fact

“Successive governments of all political

that Australia is a relatively young economy,

persuasions have actually funded research

private investment in innovation accounts for

generously in Australia,” says Professor Bob

a lower proportion of the national total than in

Williamson, Science Policy Secretary for the

most comparable developed economies.

Australian Academy of Science.

The latest available data cited by the

“We are near the top of OECD when it comes

Innovation System Report shows that Australia’s

to government funding of research. What

BERD to GDP ratio of 1.27 per cent in 2007-

we don’t have is generous funding from the

08 was just 80 per cent of the OECD average

philanthropic sector and the private sector.

of 1.58 per cent, but a marked improvement on

“This is partly a reflection of the fact that

the 1998-99 result of 46 per cent. In 2007-08,

industry in Australia has never been heavily involved in research.”


The Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) model, introduced in 1990 to address the

- Defence - General advancement of knowledge: - R&D financed from other sources than GUF - General advancement of knowledge: - R&D financed from General University Funds (GUF) - Agriculture - Health

shortfall in private R&D by supporting research partnerships between publicly funded researchers and end-user companies, is a unique aspect of Australia’s innovation system. Over three decades, 185 research ventures have

- Industrial Production and technology

been supported by the CRC program, receiving

- Energy + Environment

more than $3.3 billion from the Commonwealth

- Transport, telecommunication and other infrastructures - Exploration and exploitation of space - Exploration and exploitation of the earth

and $10.8 billion in cash or kind from other participants. While this indicates that the CRC program has encouraged a resilient cultural



change in the attitude of businesses to investing in innovation, there is much further to go before

Contribution to absolute increase in GERD by source of funds, 1984-85 to 2006-07

Australia’s innovation system matches optimal 4%

3% State Government

Other Australian



Australian Government


international paradigms. The Australian Bureau of Statistics has found that 84 per cent of businesses that undertook innovation in 2006-07 did so with no collaborative arrangements. Maturity and size were key indicators, with 60 per cent of large, innovation-active mining firms engaged in collaboration, compared to only 13 per cent of innovation-active manufacturing SMEs. This profile led the World Competitiveness Report 2009-10 to classify Australia as competitively disadvantaged on measures of networking and linkages.

66% Business

Percentage of the total GERD increase over 22 years Source: ABS (2008), Research and Experimental Development, All Sector Summary, Australia, 2007-07, cat. no. 8112.0; special ABS data request and DSSIR caculation

“It is troubling that collaboration and networking are consistent weaknesses in the Australian innovation system, particularly in comparison with the world’s most innovative countries,” the Innovation System Report says. “Australia lags significantly behind leading OECD countries in collaboration for innovation,



“It is troubling that collaboration and networking are consistent weaknesses in the Australian innovation system, particularly in comparison with the world’s most innovative countries.”

particularly between large firms and higher education institutions.” Our innovation system is also characterised

Over the same period the share allocated to industrial and energy research rose from around 21 per cent to 35 per cent, signalling a stronger

by low levels of international engagement.

commitment to applied research and the need

Research funding from overseas accounted

to respond to climate change, while health

for around 2.4 per cent of GERD in 2006,

and environment research also showed modest

the latest available figure, ranking 25 out of

gains. The biggest winner in 2009-10 was

29 OECD countries. We earned the same low

research into low carbon and renewable energy,

ranking for patented products or processes

which received slightly more than $1 billion,

invented in Australia in collaboration with at

a 290 per cent rise from the previous year’s

least one foreign inventor, while only 1 per

allocation of $270 million.

cent of Australian businesses collaborated with

These outcomes reflect the hard decisions

overseas partners in innovation, placing us

required when even the historically

second last in the OECD.

unprecedented 25 per cent increase in overall

While the private sector is playing a more important role in our innovation system, the last decade has seen a fall in emphasis

Commonwealth funding in 2009-10 could not meet the demands of all sectors. “In the 21st century no country can be

on basic research, shown by the proportion

good at everything, even the US focuses on its

of public funding allocated to “general

strengths,” Bob Williamson says.

advancement of knowledge”. In 2009-10

“But it should not be a backward-looking

this accounted for around 30 per cent of the

focus on strengths. We shouldn’t be looking at

Commonwealth’s research funding, down

what we were good at five or ten years ago; we

from almost 50 per cent ten years earlier.

have to look at what is going to be important.”



Dr Ilya Budovsky Section Manager, Electricity National Measurement Institute Dr Ilya Budovsky heads the

and microamps. His work in

distorted waveforms to quantum-

electricity section at Australia’s

applying thermal converters to

based standards, thus ensuring

National Measurement Institute.

the measurement of wideband

quality for providers and consumers

He received his PhD in electrical

electrical power resulted in the

of electrical energy. Dr Budovsky

engineering in 1995 from the

world’s first electrical power

has coordinated key international

Mendeleyev Institute of Metrology,

standard for frequencies up to

comparisons of AC-DC transfer

St Petersburg, Russia. Ilya com-

200 kHz.

standards and assessed metrology

menced in 1991 as a research

Presently, Dr Budovsky’s team,

laboratories in Australia and

scientist, assumed responsibility for

together with Japanese, German,

overseas. He is a Senior Member

the low frequency standards team

French and American scientists,

of IEEE, represents Australia on

in 1997, and was appointed to his

i s d e v e l o p i n g q u a n t u m AC

the Consultative Committee for

current role in 2009.

standards which generate voltages

Electricity and Magnetism and

Dr Budovsky’s research has

with precise values in terms of

chairs the Asia Pacific Metrology

improved the accuracy of thermal

fundamental constants of nature.

Program’s Technical Committee

converters and extended their

The new standards will allow direct

on Electricity and Magnetism.

usage from volts to millivolts

traceability of both sinusoidal and

Dr Catrin Goebel Research Manager, Australian Sports Drug Testing Laboratory National Measurement Institute Dr Catrin Goebel has a degree

based blood substitutes. She has

in industrial chemistry and has

a particular interest in improving

been working in the National

detection and quantification of

34 World Anti-Doping Agency-

Measurement Institute’s Australian

peptide hormones such as insulin

accredited laboratories to develop

Sports Drug Testing Laboratory

using mass spectrometry. Her work

world’s best practice anti-doping

( AS D TL ) i n S y d n e y s i n c e

has enabled the implementation of

methodologies. She regularly

2000. During that time, she also

improved methods with which to

presents her work at international

completed her PhD in medicine

detect these agents. Analysis of

conferences. Most recently, at

and, since 2009, has been ASDTL’s

multiple residues of several different

the annual Cologne Doping

Research Manager.

classes of banned substances

Conference, she presented her

Dr Goebel’s expertise lies in

in sports is difficult at best. Dr

work on the detection of luteinising

using LC­ — mass spectrometry

Goebel’s work lays the foundation

hormone (LH) in urine as a marker

for the analysis of performance-

for screening methods that detect

for anabolic steroid doping and

enhancing agents such as diuretics,

multiple substances simultaneously.

the identification of doping with

corticosteroids, narcotics, peptide

As ASDTL’s Research Manager,

recombinant LH.

hormones and haemoglobin-

she works closely with the other


Australian Scientist

National Measurement Institute

The breadth of our work is impressive but its impact is far greater. The National Measurement Institute is responsible for all disciplines of measurement in Australia – analytical, biological, chemical, legal and physical. We have the expertise to offer a wide range of measurement solutions to industry, government and the community. We help industry improve product quality by developing instruments that determine the exact surface temperature in the manufacturing of metal sheeting. We conduct proficiency testing programs to help bread manufacturers meet folic acid levels in Australian-made bread. In the fight against cancer, NMI is developing measurement techniques to help with early diagnosis.

To help curtail the illicit trafficking of drugs, NMI analyses drug samples for police thus enabling them to identify country of origin and trafficking routes. NMI also supports contaminated site remediation, metals production and emissions reporting by analysing for extremely low levels of dioxins and other pollutants. We could go on, but you get the idea. In summary, we offer a comprehensive, multi-disciplinary approach to measurement challenges. So if you’d like to know more about our capabilities, contact us on 61 2 8467 3600 or email

National Measurement Institute A division of the Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research



Professor Peter Drummond Professor of Theoretical Physics, ARC Centre for Quantum-Atom Optics, Swinburne Centre for Atom Optics and Ultrafast Spectroscopy Professor Peter Drummond is

Professor Drummond’s joint

where temperatures are reduced

from Swinburne University of

research with theoretical colleagues

to less than a millionth of a degree

Technology’s Centre for Atom

at Swinburne in relation to ultra-

above absolute zero.

Optics and Ultrafast Spectroscopy.

cold atoms and quantum optics

The importance of Professor

He has been a fellow of the

has led to the development of

Drummond’s work is evidenced

Australian Academy of Sciences

new theoretical calculations in

by exceptional citation rates, even

since 2003. He was awarded

both fields. This theoretical work

within the relevant field of research,

the 2005 Harrie Massey Medal

has been characterised by testable

indicating a high degree of visibility

and 2008 Walter Boas Medal

predictions and consequently this

for the theoretical work.

from the Australian Institute

has been adopted by a range of

As well as ultra-cold atomic

of Physics.The latter medal is

experimental groups. This has led

physics — both fermions and

awarded for original research

to recent high-profile experiments

bosons — Professor Drummond

that makes the most important

in ultra-cold atomic physics at


contribution to physics carried

Swinburne, which has one of the

information, foundations of

out in the five years prior to the

world’s leading laboratories in this

quantum measurement, genetics

date of the award.

exciting new field of physics —

and computational physics.




Professor Alex Babanin Swinburne Centre for Sustainable Infrastructure, Faculty of Engineering & Industrial Sciences Professor Alexander Babanin

1997 to 2000; and in the University

is from Swinburne University

of Adelaide from 2000 to 2004. He

of Technology’s Centre for

has worked at Swinburne University

climate. Results of his research have

Sustainable Infrastructure. He has

of Technology since 2004.

revealed new physical mechanisms

a degree in physics and a master

Alex’s areas of expertise and

in the processes of small-scale

in physical oceanography from the

research involve wind-generated

air-sea interaction, wave breaking

M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State

waves, air-sea interactions and

and spectral dissipation of wave

University in Moscow, Russia.

ocean turbulence (including

energy, upper-ocean mixing.

He worked as a research scientist in

spectral modelling of the wind-

His work is particularly relevant to

the Marine Hydrophysical Institute

generated waves); dynamics

the modelling of extreme weather

in Sebastopol in Russia from 1983

of surface ocean waves; wave

conditions and ocean circulation,

to 1996, where he also completed

breaking and dissipation; surface

including climate change.

his PhD; in the Australian Defence

and bottom boundary layers;

Force Academy in Canberra from

extreme waves; ocean mixing; wave


Australian Scientist


Some call us small. We call it fat-free. It’s research focus, coupled with research agility. As such, our ability to turn ideas into commercial partnership opportunities is exceptional. Just ask Boeing, Ford and Cisco Systems. And despite our size, citations of Swinburne’s research have grown 250 per cent since 1999, a rate of growth that outstrips all the Go8 universities.* Combine this with a major investment of $250 million over four years, and our quest for research excellence is unparalleled.

ReseaRch at swinbuRne

1300 275 788 * ISI Thomson 2009


CRICOS Provider: 00111D


Laureate Professor John Ralston Director, Ian Wark Research Institute University of South Australia

Professor John Ralston is a physical chemist,

and technology transfer to industry) with more than 30

specialising in colloid and surface chemistry, with

highly-reputed research institutions in Europe, North

complementary training in metallurgical engineering

and South America, Asia and southern Africa and

and technology. He has established a very strong

informal links with many others.

international reputation in research, particularly in

Professor Ralston is and has been a member of

the physical chemistry of mineral flotation, static and

numerous national and international associations

dynamic wetting and the stability of colloidal systems.

and committees, including the College of Reviewers,

Professor Ralston is the creator and foundation

Canada Research Chairs Program; the International

Director of the Ian Wark Research Institute (The

Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC),

Wark™), which incorporates the ARC Special

Physical and Biophysical Chemistry Division

Research Centre for Particle and Material Interfaces

(2002-2004); the International Association of Colloid

and the headquarters for the Australian Mineral

and Interface Science; and the Australian Research

Science Research Institute (AMSRI), at the University

Council’s Advisory Council.

of South Australia.

Professor Ralston’s work in both fundamental

The research outcomes of Professor Ralston and his

and applied science has been recognised by his

team create enormous improvements to productivity,

peers in Australia by his election as a Fellow

profitability and environmental sustainability for

of both the Academy of Technological Sciences

industries in the mining, materials, specialty chemicals,

and Engineering (in 1993) and of the Australian

pharmaceutical and biotechnology sectors.

Academy of Science (in 2005).

Professor Ralston’s research outcomes have been

The significant contribution, and impact, of Professor

documented and published in over 350 refereed journal

Ralston’s research has also been recognised through

articles and textbook chapters, plus numerous refereed

numerous awards. During 2007, he was named South

conference papers and industry reports.

Australian Scientist of the Year and South Australian of

In The Wark, Professor Ralston has assembled a

the Year. This was followed by the award of an Officer

team of researchers with backgrounds in chemistry,

of the Order of Australia in 2008 and the Australian

physics, engineering, mathematics and biotechnology.

Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering

They collaborate internally and with their colleagues

Clunies Ross Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009.

elsewhere in Australia and around the world. They have formal links (strong collaborative research 66

Making the world micro. Researchers at the Ian Wark Research Institute (The Wark™), led by Laureate Professor John Ralston AO FAA FTSE, are developing a range of real world applications for microfluidic chips, such as extraction of metals, chemical recovery and biomedical diagnostics. Faster reaction rates, greater process control and a smaller process footprint provide an excellent vehicle for ‘process intensification’ which also benefits from minimal contamination risks. The Wark™ hosts the South Australian node of the Australian National Fabrication Facility, a $12million state-of-the-art micro fabrication facility. The Wark™ team has successfully demonstrated proof-of-principle capabilities of the microfluidic chip approach and is now focussed on the wider implementation of the technology such as ‘tailoring’ the surfaces in the microchip channels. This research program, with a significant international component has attracted strong interest from key players in the mineral and chemical processing industries. It’s another example of The Wark’s world-class research in interfacial science and engineering and demonstrates why it remains an international leader in its field of research. For more information about The Wark™ visit

A microfluidic device prototype is being designed at The Wark™ to efficiently capture cancer cells from patient’s blood, which are present in ratios as low as 1 to 10 per billion blood cells.

In the minerals processing industry, ‘lab on a chip’ technology has been developed to enhance solvent extraction selectivity and increase transfer rates by factors of 100 to 1,000.



Australian Scientist


Professor Fritz Geiser Professor of Zoology Coordinator of the Research Centre for Behavioural and Physiological Ecology Professor Fritz Geiser has worked

perception that many mammals and

hibernate without feeding for up to

in Zoology at the University of New

birds use it for energy conservation.

one year.

England since 1988. He conducts

He has estimated that 43 per

Professor Geiser has contributed

research into the ecological

cent of all Australian terrestrial

significantly to knowledge about

physiology and biochemistry of

mammals use torpor, and has

metabolic fuel use during torpor,

mammals and birds, especially

shown that the rate of extinction

chronobiology of hibernation,

with regard to hibernation and

in mammals worldwide is strongly

interrelations between torpor

daily torpor. He has discovered

reduced in those that employ

and reproduction, mechanisms

torpor in many Australian species,

torpor. He was the first to discover

of animals’ thermal tolerance,

including tawny frogmouths and

that dietary fats can substantially

and the evolution of endothermy


modify hibernation patterns, that

and torpor. He has published

Professor Geiser’s work on the

torpid desert marsupials bask

170 scientific papers that are

diversity of species that employ

during rewarming from torpor to

frequently cited, and his work

torpor has substantially contributed

minimise energy expenditure, and

is recognised worldwide.

to the current international

that marsupial pygmy-possums can

Dr Pierre Moens Senior Lecturer School of Science and Technology University of New England Dr Pierre Moens gained his PhD

(Institute for Molecular Bioscience,

degree from the Catholic University


the interactions between proteins

of Louvain after investigating —

Working at the University of

involved in cancer aggressiveness

in collaboration with Dr Terence

Bordeaux in France and then

and the cell membrane with the aim

Partridge — the function of

with Professor David M. Jameson

of developing better, more cost-

dystrophin in a murine model of

in Hawaii, Dr Moens gained

effective drugs against cancer.

Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

experience in molecular biology

To achieve these goals, Dr Moens

Then, in a postdoctoral position

techniques and the application

and his collaborators are combining

with Professor Cris dos Remedios

of fluorescence to biological

many different approaches – including

at the University of Sydney, he

systems. Since arriving at the

biochemistry, structural biology, cell

was introduced to fluorescence

University of New England in

biology and biophysics. They are

spectroscopy and biophysics

2003 he has established continuing

also taking advantage of cutting-

and met several of his current

collaborations with world leaders

edge developments in molecular

collaborators — Professor Enrico

in Europe, the United States and

imaging and image analysis.

Gratton (University of California,

Australia, and has applied advanced

Irvine) and Professor Glenn King

biophysical techniques in studying


Australian Scientist


6 Strength in partnership In August 2010 the 30th anniversary of the China-Australia Agreement on S&T Cooperation was celebrated at the Shanghai World Expo with a program highlighting the scope of the relationship and key challenges facing science and society in all nations. An astronomy roundtable and workshops

so an energy-hungry world can avoid the worst

on climate change, biotechnology and

effects of climate change, which would hit

nanotechnology drew leading researchers from

Australia harder than most.

Australia and China, led on the Australian side

“We can’t do it on our own so we need the

by Chief Scientist Penny Sackett and her two

skills of our traditional European and north

immediate predecessors, Professor Jim Peacock

American partners, but we also need to engage

and Professor Robin Batterham.

with the emerging world, particularly China,

This high-level presence underlined

which is leading the world in renewable energy

the importance for Australia of scientific

research, and India, which is putting money on

collaboration with China and other strategic

the table to do it,” Holmes says.

partners with whom Australia has formal science

One example of this engagement was

and technology agreements – the United States,

announced in July between CSIRO and the

the European Union, France, India and Indonesia.

China United Coalbed Methane Corporation.

Interwoven with these bilateral agreements

The jointly funded $10 million demonstration

is a rich fabric of collaboration defined by

project aims to capture up to 2000 tonnes of

research themes.

CO2 from a coal fired power station, sequester it

Professor Andrew Holmes, Foreign Secretary of the Australian Academy of Science, says none is more important than the challenge of developing carbon-neutral energy technologies


in coal seams unsuitable for mining, and harvest methane displaced by the CO2 for use as fuel. This is one of more than 3500 collaborative research agreements between Australian

Australian Pavillion at the Shanghai World Expo 2010.

research institutions and overseas counterparts,

“We have to have a commitment to small

which focus on research themes and specific

exchanges because they are the sprat to catch

projects under the umbrella of government-

the mackerel,” says Andrew Holmes.

level agreements. Despite this extensive network of international

“There is a kind of entry criterion: getting a small grant to show that you can collaborate,

research collaboration, there is still much to

then using that demonstration as a mechanism

do. Compared to other developed countries,

to help you gain entry to larger collaborations.”

Australia has a relatively low level of

Australia’s multicultural strengths will

international collaboration when measured

also enhance our ability to contribute to the

by R&D-funded overseas scientific publications

emerging emphasis on establishing science

co-authored with overseas researchers, patents

as a more powerful platform for diplomacy.

with foreign co-inventors, or firms involved

In January 2010 a Royal Society publication,

in international cooperation on innovation.

New Frontiers in Science Diplomacy, noted that

The prospects are good for improving our

a long tradition of operating across national

performance on these metrics, notably through

boundaries has left science well placed to support

the internationalisation of our knowledge

emerging forms of ‘soft diplomacy’, identifying

base. The proportion of our population

relations between Western and Islamic cultures

with tertiary qualifications earned overseas

as a key area for science to play a role.

is the second-highest in the OECD, and

In this context, the Australia-Indonesia Treaty

Australia has the sixth-highest proportion of

for Cooperation in Scientific Research and

international students enrolled in advanced

Technological Development, signed in 2005

research programs. This raises the potential for

with the world’s most populous Islamic nation,

Australia’s international scientific collaboration

could become Australia’s most important

to be enhanced via the establishment of links

international research partnership by the time

by individual researchers.

it, too, celebrates its 30th anniversary.




the essence

An Antarctic under-ice landscape of smoothly rolling plains, large mountain ranges, deep valleys and sub-glacial lakes was “seen” for the first time by an international team of scientists operating out of Australia’s Casey station in January 2009.

Photo above: This 60km section of radar signals over Aurora Basin shows the lower half of the East Antarctic ice sheet. The strong bedrock reflection is seen through about four kilometres of ice, and internal layers in the ice can be seen sweeping over an 800m change in bedrock height. Image by Roland Warner and Jason Roberts, Australian Antarctic Division © Commonwealth of Australia


Australian Scientist

John Gunn, Chief Scientist, Australian Antarctic Division

e of Antarctic science Austr alian Antarctic Division (AAD)

contributors to setting research directions in Antarctic

scientists worked with colleagues from the United

science’s peak organisation, the Scientific Committee

States, Scotland and France aboard a Basler aircraft-

on Antarctic Research (SCAR).

turned-airborne-sensor lab to examine the East

The Australian program draws from a broad range

Antarctic ice sheet and the landscape hidden thousands

of disciplines and institutions and is strengthened by

of metres beneath it.

collaboration with renowned international scientists. In

On board the aircraft, high resolution ice-penetrating

2008/2009 the program supported 119 projects, which

radar provided images of the underside of the ice

were led by scientists from 31 institutions and involved

sheet and layers within the ice; a gravity sensor and

collaboration with a further 242 institutions from 28

magnetometer measured the density and composition

countries. Over the past five years, the program has

of the rock lying beneath the ice; a laser altimeter

also supported 141 higher degree students, including

mapped the ice surface and digital cameras captured

98 PhD students.

images of the surface features.

A new Australian Antarctic Science strategic plan

This groundbreaking work typifies the spirit of

( seeks to encourage, guide

cooperation fundamental to Antarctic scientific

and focus program research over the next 10 years,

research. Collaboration is important in any scientific

with key thematic areas designed to provide input into

endeavour, but nowhere is this more apparent than

government policy and environmental management

in Antarctica, with its difficulty of access, expensive

priority areas. Thematic areas will examine the roles of

logistics, vast distances and inhospitable weather and

Antarctica and the Southern Ocean in global change;

terrain. The Antarctic Treaty enshrines the notion of

terrestrial and ocean ecosystem change; natural

international cooperation in order to explore, discover

resource management and wildlife conservation; and

and protect the greatest wilderness on the planet.

approaches to minimizing the impacts of an increasing

Australia has played a leading role in Antarctic

human footprint on the Antarctic continent. A ‘frontier

science since Sir Douglas Mawson’s expedition to

science’ theme will support less policy-focussed science

the magnetic South Pole almost 100 years ago. Since

that is aligned with national science priorities.

that heroic era of exploration, the AAD, on behalf of

The program is open to researchers from around

the Antarctic science community, has developed and

the world who wish to pursue studies in line with the

supported a comprehensive science program that

strategic plan. I would encourage those with relevant

has earned a reputation for excellence in discovery,

expertise, a commitment to solving these global issues

innovation and delivery on national and international

and, perhaps most importantly, a sense of adventure,

goals. Our scientists led many projects in the recently

to examine the plan and make contact with the AAD.

completed International Polar Year and are strong



Professor Fritz Geiser Professor of Zoology Coordinator of the Research Centre for Behavioural and Physiological Ecology Professor Fritz Geiser has worked

international perception that many

that marsupial pygmy-possums

in zoology at the University of New

mammals and birds employ torpor

can hibernate without feeding

England since 1988. He conducts

for energy conservation. He has

for up to one year.

research into the ecological

estimated that 43 per cent of all

Professor Geiser has contributed

physiology and biochemistry of

Australian terrestrial mammals

significantly to knowledge about

mammals and birds, especially

use torpor, and has shown that

metabolic fuel use during torpor,

with regard to hibernation and

the rate of extinction in mammals

chronobiology of hibernation,

daily torpor. He has discovered

worldwide is strongly reduced

interrelations between torpor

torpor in many Australian species,

in those that employ torpor. He

and reproduction, mechanisms

including tawny frogmouths

was the first to discover that

of animals’ thermal tolerance,

and kookaburras.

dietary fats can substantially

and the evolution of endothermy

Professor Geiser’s work on

modify hibernation patterns, that

and torpor. He has published

the diversity of species that

torpid desert marsupials bask

170 scientific papers that are

employ torpor has substantially

during rewarming from torpor to

frequently cited, and his work

c o n t r i b u t e d t o t h e c u r re n t

minimise energy expenditure, and

is recognised worldwide.

Dr Pierre Moens Senior Lecturer School of Science and Technology University of New England Dr Pierre Moens gained his PhD

King (Institute for Molecular

degree from the Catholic University

Bioscience, QLD).

the interactions between proteins

of Louvain after investigating —

Working at the University of

involved in cancer aggressiveness

in collaboration with Dr Terence

Bordeaux in France and then

and the cell membrane with the aim

Partridge — the function of

with Professor David M. Jameson

of developing better, more cost-

dystrophin in a murine model of

in Hawaii, Dr Moens gained

effective drugs against cancer.

Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

experience in molecular biology

To achieve these goals, Dr

Then, in a postdoctoral position

techniques and the application of

Moens and his collaborators are

with Professor Cris dos Remedios

fluorescence to biological systems.


at the University of Sydney, he

Since arriving at the University

approaches – including biochemistry,

was introduced to fluorescence

of New England in 2003 he

structural biology, cell biology

spectroscopy and biophysics

has established continuing

and biophysics. They are also

and met several of his current

collaborations with world leaders

taking advantages of cutting-edge

collaborators — Professor Enrico

in Europe, the United States and

developments in molecular imaging

Gratton (University of California,

Australia, and has applied advanced

and image analysis.

Ir vine) and Professor Glenn

biophysical techniques in studying




Australian Scientist

Australian Science in Antarctica Celebrates 100 Years

Australia has been at the leading edge of scientific research in Antarctica since Sir Douglas Mawson’s epic expedition to the icy southern continent in 1911. Today, research institutions from all over Australia and around the world contribute to the Australian Antarctic Program, which is at the forefront of scientific research on climate change, ocean acidification, conservation and human impacts on the environment. A new Australian Antarctic Science Strategic Plan is providing research directions for the future. Refer to our website for further details:

Australian Government Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities Australian Antarctic Division 75



7 International research Over the past 20 years, Australian scientific output has become increasingly international as the problems being tackled by our researchers become larger in scale, scope and complexity. This trend will only accelerate, which

Key to international collaboration

means that Australian scientists will need

Most scientific collaboration occurs on an

increasing support to build and maintain the

ad-hoc basis. For example, two researchers

relationships required to make this happen.

who have met at a conference decide to share

International collaboration is the major driver of Australia’s increased scientific output. FEAST’s bibliometric analysis of scientific journal publications involving Australian authors

insights and data and ultimately publish a joint paper on their findings and arrange to spend time in each other’s laboratory. Further down the track these researchers

clearly shows that the increase in publications

may formalise their collaboration with a joint

is being driven almost entirely by internationally

proposal for funding. A prior relationship and

co-authored papers, predominately with Europe

development of trust is a necessary pre-requisite

and the USA (see FEAST Discussion Paper

for minimising the risks and maximising the


success of this more rigorous engagement.

One of the major factors contributing to this

When it comes to international funding

statistic is the rise of increasingly complex global

programs, the importance of trust is further

issues being tackled by researchers (population

accentuated as researchers are often engaging

health, climate change, biodiversity, etc.) that by

with foreign programs that have vastly different

their nature require international cooperation.

rules and expectations to domestic programs.



International Collaborations in Australian Publications, Science Citation Index, 1991–2005.

In a recent survey (FEAST Discussion Paper

— different national environments, funding


regimes, cultures, problem formulation, etc.

of Australian participants in the European

— the experience has a multiplying effect that

Union’s Seventh Framework Program for

enables them to think about and tackle scientific

Research and Technological Development (FP7)

problems with an array of new mindsets.

— which is a €50 billion multilateral research

Additionally, by spending quality time in

program — FEAST confirmed that almost

overseas laboratories they are building strong

all engagement occurred through pre-existing

social capital with their counterparts.

relationships with European colleagues, most

Nations across the globe have expressed

of which had been cemented via lab visits or

concern for a long time about ‘brain drain’ —

overseas sabbaticals.

that is, the movement of talent from their home nation to abroad. Whilst a simple catchphrase

Multiplying and circulating

that has been used to rally domestic support for

When researchers spend time in an overseas lab,

scientific research, it fails to capture the essence

they clearly stand to gain scientific knowledge

of modern research — which is a global game!

and know-how, thereby adding to their already

More recently, the phrase ‘brain circulation’

existing capabilities.

has been used in some parts of the world to

Conversely, they are also able to contribute

encourage domestic researchers to pursue

to the scientific base of the laboratory they are

international opportunities and experiences with

visiting as well as expose their own research

the understanding that they will, at some point,

to wider audience. More subtly, however,

return to their home country with enviable skills

when exposed to other research environments

and professional connections.



An investment Traditionally, when we think about public funds being awarded to researchers to spend time

spend important time overseas building their professional links. One of the smartest investments we can make

overseas, we generally relate it to an investment

in Australian science is developing the global

in knowledge. However, as discussed above,

presence of our researchers.

we should increasingly consider the opportunity


as an investment in social capital — the more we invest in researcher mobility, the greater

The Forum for European-Australian Science

the accumulation of social capital in the global

and Technology cooperation (FEAST)

research system, and the greater access we will

highlights, promotes, and facilitates research

receive to cutting edge research not available

collaboration between Europe and Australia.

in Australia.

More information about FEAST can be found at

In the recent House of Representatives

inquiry into Australia’s international research collaboration, it is noted that amongst the key impediments to Australia’s international engagement are issues relating to researcher

Acknowledgements: Certain data included herein are derived from the Web of Science® prepared by THOMSON REUTERS®, Inc. (Thomson®), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA: © Copyright THOMSON REUTERS® 2006. All rights reserved.

mobility. These include difficulties encountered by foreign researchers seeking to enter Australia to pursue their careers, and the difficulty domestic researchers experience in securing (or re-resecuring) funds to enable them to



Professor Brenda Happell Director of Institute of Health and Social Science Research, Professor of Contemporary Nursing Faculty of Sciences, Engineering and Health Professor Brenda Happell is from

Melbourne, Professor Happell

coercive practices, and physical

CQUniversity’s Institute for Health

established a highly successful

health associated with mental

and Social Science Research and

and innovative centre. She was

illness. During her career she has

School of Nursing and Midwifery.

responsible for the implementation

obtained more than $5 million in

She is qualified as a general and

of a world first academic position

competitive funding, published

mental health nurse; she is also a

for a consumer of mental health

more than 200 articles in refereed

qualified secondary school teacher,

services, and has maintained a

journals, authored two books and

with postgraduate qualifications,

long-standing interest in consumer

several book chapters. She has

including a PhD, in Education.

participation in mental health.

also established an impressive

She is an internationally recognised

Professor Happell is a strong

record as the Editor-in-Chief of

leader in mental health nursing. As

advocate for the human rights

the International Journal of Mental

inaugural director of the Centre

of people diagnosed with mental

Health Nurses, including its recent

for Psychiatric Nursing Research

illness and her research interests

ERA reclassification from B to A.

and Practice at the University of

include seclusion and other

Dr Corneel Vandelanotte Acting Director, Centre for Physical Activity Studies, NHNMRC & NHF Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Centre for Physical Activity Studies, Institute for Health and Social Sciences Research Dr Corneel Vandelanotte is an

Conference on Physical Activity

such, applying a population health

NHRMC & NHF Post-doctoral

and Health organised by Sports

approach to behaviour change.

Research Fellow and acting director

Medicine Australia in Melbourne.

Dr Vandelanotte is also involved

of the Centre for Physical Activity

In 2007, he was awarded a four-

in research evaluating the efficacy

Studies at the Institute of Social

year NHMRC & NHF post-

of interactive telecommunication

Sciences Research, CQUniversity.

doctoral research fellowship.

technology (e.g. smart phones)

He completed his PhD in 2004 at

In early 2009, Dr Vandelanotte

to improve chronic disease self-

Ghent University in Belgium. In

commenced his appointment with


2005 he moved to Australia where

CQUniversity in Rockhampton.

As Australia is facing an ob

he first worked at the Cancer

Dr Vandelanotte’s areas of

esity epidemic, Dr Vandelanotte’s

Prevention Research Centre at

expertise and research involve the

work is crucial to reducing the

the University of Queensland in

development and evaluation of

burden of disease and health care

Brisbane. In 2005, he was awarded

website-delivered and computer-

costs related to physical inactivity

an Early Investigator Prize for

tailored physical activity and

and overeating.

the best presentation at National

dietary interventions, and, as



Australian Scientist

CQUniversity Australia has a focus on research that makes a difference. Research that addresses the issues affecting our communities. Dynamic research from real people like… » Dr Mitch Duncan who, with funding from the Heart Foundation of Australia and New Zealand, is examining physical activity levels and associated health outcomes. » Dr Kerry Reid-Searl, our Nurse Educator of the Year, who is literally changing the face of nursing education with her innovative approach to teaching and curriculum development. » Dr Brenda Happell, a leader in mental health nursing and patient advocacy, investigating the links between our minds and our bodies when it comes to health. » And Dr Corneel Vandelanotte, a recipient of the prestigious NHMRC Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship, who is undertaking groundbreaking research into the development and evaluation of web-delivered physical activity interventions.

CRICOS Codes: QLD 00219C; NSW 01315F; VIC 01624D


CQUniversity Research… making a difference.

‘We are building one of Australia’s truly great universities.’ Professor Scott Bowman Vice-Chancellor CQUniversity Australia









13CQUni 13 27 86 ROCKHAMPTON



Professor Cheryl Praeger School of Mathematics and Statistics The University of Western Australia A Winthrop Professor in the

focuses on the theory of groups,

staff, ARC postdoctoral research

UWA School of Mathematics

which can be regarded as the

staff, research students, honours

and Statistics and an Australian

mathematical representation of

students, and a regular stream of

Research Council Federation

symmetry. Her work has resulted

international research visitors.

Fellow, Professor Praeger is in

in theoretical and computational

Prof e s s o r Pr ae g e r is a l so

the top 1 per cent of highly cited

advances that have opened up new

w e l l k n o w n f o r p ro m o t i n g

mathematicians in the world.

mathematical areas now studied by

the involvement of women in

She is recognised for adapting

mathematicians worldwide.

mathematics and for her work

a 19th century theory by a now

Named 2009 WA Scientist

with the Australian Mathematics

celebrated rebel French teenager,

of the Year, Professor Praeger

Trust, which encourages the study

Evariste Galois, for use in today’s

runs two ARC-funded research

of mathematics by primary and

information technology revolution.

programs which involve a team

secondary school students.

Professor Praeger’s research

of UWA teaching and research

Associate Professor Kevin Pfleger Molecular Endocrinology Laboratory Western Australian Institute for Medical Research The University of Western Australia Associate Professor Kevin Pfleger

to respond to particular hormones

is head of the Laboratory for

in an appropriate manner.

Molecular Endocrinology – GPCRs,

Associate Professor Pfleger

awards in his field and been invited to speak at numerous conferences

which is a world-leader in its field,


having developed technology which

(Pharmacology) at Cambridge

In addition to being head of

places special light-emitting labels

University in the UK and

his WAIMR laboratory, Associate

on proteins of interest, allowing

obtained his PhD in Molecular

Professor Pfleger is Chief Scientific

interactions between proteins to be

Endocrinology from the University

Officer of the WAIMR/University

studied. Advances demonstrated by

of Edinburgh. In 2002, he joined

of Western Australia spin-out

him and the laboratory have enable

the Western Australian Institute

company Dimerix Bioscience.

these interactions to be monitored

for Medical Research as a research

In December 2009, he was named

in real-time in living cells for

fellow and was awarded a Peter

Western Australian Young Scientist

longer time periods than previously

Doherty Fellowship by the National

of the Year at the Western Australian

possible. His work focuses heavily

Health & Medical Research

Science Awards.

on G-protein coupled receptors,

Council beginning in 2005. He

which are proteins that enable cells

has won national and international




and universities all over the world.

Australian Scientist

Achieve international research excellence.

BC&YUNWG430 CrICos Provider Code 00126G

Join us.

If you want to achieve world-class results and work with researchers who are already doing just that, we invite you to join The University of Western Australia. As a member of Australia’s Group of Eight research-intensive universities, our focus is on working with the brightest and the best. We continue to attract international award-winning teachers, researchers and students whose individual reputations have helped to build ours. To explore the exciting opportunities available visit



8 Medical research International research collaboration is a cornerstone of both basic and applied research in Australia. A key question for Australian policy

Australians are also well connected throughout

makers is whether and how Australian

the globe. Over 36 per cent of publications

researchers can meet pressing national health

derived from NHMRC-funded research have

issues, step up their engagement with international

one or more international authors. Half of these

partners in order address global health, and ensure

collaborations are with the USA, and 16.5 per

we generate the best outcomes from Australia’s

cent with the UK.

excellence in research.

As part of the global community, Australian

Australians are proud of their track record

is a growing recipient of external funding

on research. One often-quoted research mantra

derived from industry and philanthropic

is that “despite having only 0.3 per cent of

sources.In a major economic analysis of the

the world’s population, Australia contributes

impact of Australian research in 2003, Access

3 per cent of the OECD’s medical research

Economics noted one measure of Australia’s

publications”. Australia has been home to six

attractiveness internationally is the amount

Nobel laureates in medicine: from Howard

of overseas funding it receives, which then

Florey’s involvement in the discovery of

amounted to around $121 million (4 per cent)

penicillin through to Barry Marshall and Robin

of Australian R&D spending.

Warren’s discovery of the Helicobacter pylori

Between 2004 and 2008 Australia’s National

bacterium. The ground- breaking vaccine

Health and Medical Research Council provided

for human papilloma virus was the result of

563 grants, totaling almost $400 million, which

Australian medical research.

leveraged over $200 million from international



sources. In 2008, Australia was fourth on the

For example, the George Institute has

list of NIH funding recipients (behind Canada,

established a research centre in China, in

South Africa and the UK), receiving 50 grants

partnership with Peking University Health

amounting to over $14 million.

Science Centre, to address the threat of chronic

The pharmaceutical sector is a major investor, contributing in excess of $700 million p.a. to research and clinical trial activity in Australia and much of this is sourced from overseas. Australia is increasingly being recognized

disease. This marks an important milestone in improving health care in this booming nation. The Queen Elizabeth Research Institute, University of Adelaide, University of Philippines, Monash Medical Centre and Perak College

by overseas philanthropic granting agencies.

of Medicine Malaysia are collaborating in

For example, Australian universities and research

the construction of an evidenced-based

institutes were the recipients of seven of 76

maternal health research program in southeast

grants awarded by the Bill and Melinda Gates

Asia. Disorders related to pregnancy and

Foundation to combat disease in the developing

childbirth represent one of the biggest health

world under the Grand Challenges Explorations

risk differences between the developed and

program. These grants reflect Australian

developing worlds. By establishing a network

expertise in immunology and drug development.

of researchers and teachers of evidence-based

Australia is also contributing to regional

health care across four southeast Asian countries

development through collaborative research,

supported from Australia, this collaborative

training, education and health programs.

project aims to improve the clinical treatment



“Research Australia’s submission to the enquiry presented a range of principles for international engagement.”

of pregnancy and childbirth related disorders

exposure and experience,and improved visa

and the health outcomes of mothers and infants.

and immigrationprocesses to enable uptake

The Australian Government established

of research positions within an Australian

a parliamentary enquiry into Australia’s

setting from international experts.

international research collaboration. Research

In its June 2010 report, the enquiry noted

Australia’s submission to the enquiry presented

that collaboration at an international level is an

a range of principles for international

absolute necessity. Recommendations focused

engagement. These included:

on the mechanics of building partnerships,

• Building Australia’s knowledge base through

and the opportunity for Australia to develop

transfer of skills, expertise, knowledge and

a strategic approach to help it to build on its

resources within the domestic economy

scientific strengths and explore opportunities

• Providing government, industry and the

for new collaborative partners.

research community with more economic

There is no doubt that the future will offer

information, a business case and the cost

exciting prospects for Australian researchers.

benefits of international collaboration • Better national information regarding the depth and breadth of collaboration • Capacity building to support travel, exchanges, and international fellowships to provide Australian researchers with international

Note: Research Australia is the nation’s largest alliance working to make health and medical research a higher national priority. Research Australia is supported by 170 organisations that together represent the voices of research institutes, universities, industry, hospitals, philanthropic groups and the community.



Professor Shaun Jackson Professor of Haematology Australian Centre for Blood Diseases Monash University

Professor Shaun Jackson is a co-

In 2010, Professor Jackson was

Research Institute in San Diego

founder of the Australian Centre

awarded an NHMRC Australia

in the USA. He has established a

for Blood Diseases (ACBD),

Fellowship to advance his team’s

large multidisciplinary research

a Monash University centre located

work on the development of new

program involving scientists at

at AMREP. The ACBD is the

approaches to treat heart disease and

Scripps, the Walter & Eliza Hall

nation’s pre-eminent blood centre

stroke. The Australia Fellowships

Institute, Monash and RMIT

with internationally recognised

are Australia’s most prestigious

University to examine innovative

research, treatment and educational

award for excellence in the fields

new approaches to the treatment

programs. Professor Jackson’s

of health and medical research. In

of blood clotting diseases, focusing

research group is renowned for its

addition to his role at Monash,

on biomechanical mechanisms that

work on blood clotting diseases,

Professor Jackson has an adjunct

activate the blood clotting system.

relevant to heart attacks and stroke.

professorial position at the Scripps

Associate Professor Josephine Forbes Glycation and Diabetes Laboratory Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute

Associate Professor Josephine

communication and research and

only slow down the progression

Forbes is from the Baker IDI

a Young Researcher Award in 2002

of diabetic kidney disease.

Heart and Diabetes Institute.

from the International Diabetes

In particular, she studies the

She is currently involved in

Federation as one of the most

biochemical process of advanced

establishing the Australian

promising young scientists in the

glycation, which irreversibly

Academy of Young Scientists.

Western Pacific Region.

modifies proteins both within our

A s s o c i a t e Pro f e s s o r Fo r b e s

Associate Professor Forbes’

bodies and during modern food

was awarded the Commonwealth

area of expertise and research

preparation techniques. These

Health Minister’s Award for

is within diabetes and its devastating

modified proteins cause damage via

Medical Research and an NHMRC

complications, including kidney

a number of pathways, including

excellence award in 2010, each

disease, which affects more than

interruption of energy production in

of which recognises emerging

400,000 Australian individuals and

cell power stations (mitochondria)

medical researchers in the middle

costs billions of health care dollars

and via “caramelisation” of blood

of their careers. She has also

per annum. Her research focuses

vessels, causing stiffening.

received a Young Tall Poppy

on identification of new targets for

Award for excellence in scientific

therapy, since current medicines



Located on the site of The Alfred hospital, Melbourne, the Alfred Medical Research and Education Precinct AMREP is one of Australia’s leading centres for medical research, offering modern facilities and outstanding opportunities for research collaboration. AMREP is a partnership between Alfred Health, Monash University, Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute, the Macfarlane Burnet Institute for Medical Research and Public Health (Burnet Institute), La Trobe University and Deakin University. New AMREP research and education buildings were opened in 2002, attracting new groups and greatly stimulating research activity on the site. Increasing numbers of research staff, largely due to mergers of the two medical research institutes with smaller institutes, and the need for expanded and upgraded clinical facilities for Alfred Health and educational space for Monash, were the main drivers for AMREP’s latest, innovative development. Stage 2 of The Alfred Centre, a 17,000 square metre project, was completed in early 2010. The extensive, new state-of-the-art research facilities include the Burnet Institute’s nine PC2 laboratories, PC3 facility and X-ray crystallography suite, and Baker IDI’s Healthy Lifestyle Research Centre, incorporating a research gymnasium. In 2010, located at AMREP are: • The Alfred hospital (Alfred Health) • Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute • Burnet Institute • Monash University School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine • Monash University Central Clinical School (Departments of Medicine, Immunology and Surgery) • Australian Centre for Blood Diseases (Monash University) • Nucleus Network (including an early phase clinical trials facility) • National Trauma Research Institute • Australian Centre for Health Innovation • Monash Alfred Psychiatry Research Centre • La Trobe Alfred Clinical School of Nursing Major research programs at AMREP: • Cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity • Infectious diseases, immunology, allergy and respiratory disease • Trauma, critical care and anaesthesia • Blood diseases • Mental health and neurosciences • Public health and preventive medicine • Global health For further information about AMREP or to request a copy of the annual AMREP Research Report, contact the Alfred & Baker IDI Research Office, Commercial Road, Melbourne, Victoria 3004 Telephone: +61 3 8532 1771 Email:



Prof. Brien Holden, PhD DSc OAM Chief Executive Officer Brien Holden Vision Institute

Professor Brien Holden OAM has

in the US. He was also behind

was developed by Brien Holden

been a major figure in international

the development of soft toric

and partners through the Vision

eye health and vision care for

contact lenses for the correction

CRC (which he helped establish)

nearly 40 years. His influence

of astigmatism, one of the most

and has been recently released

extends across science, research

successful toric designs ever.

across the world.

and development, professional

Professor Holden’s research

Brien has long been involved

and academic education and

focus is now on myopia (short-

in humanitarian efforts to

international public health.

sightedness) and presbyopia (old

provide eye care to indigenous

He has initiated and guided

sight) — refractive conditions

Australians and developing

projects involving international

that affect the sight of billions —

communities throughout the

researchers and industry that

and has engaged an international

world. His contributions have been

developed the silicone hydrogel

team of partners to develop

acknowledged through a host of

contact lens — a revolutionary

novel technologies to solve these

national and international awards

advance for the contact lens

problems. The first spectacle

and honours, including the Medal

industry that today captures more

design demonstrating an ability to

of the Order of Australia and six

than 50 per cent of the market

control the progression of myopia

honorary doctorates.

Prof. Mark Willcox, BSc PhD Chief Scientific Officer Brien Holden Vision Institute

Pro f e s s o r M a r k W i l l c o x i s

Institute of Dental Research. In

ways of preventing or controlling

renowned internationally for his

1993, he joined the Cornea and

this disease. Microbial keratitis is

steerage of basic and translational

Contact Lens Research Unit of the

a serious but rare infection of the

research and for establishing

School of Optometry and Vision

front surface of the eye (the cornea)

successful partnerships between

Science at the University of New

and is the only contact lens-related

academic research and industry.

South Wales.

condition that is potentially sight

Following the completion of

Professor Willcox specialises in

his PhD in medical microbiology

the areas of ocular microbiology,

Amongst many awards, Professor

at Manchester University in

tear film biochemistry and corneal

Willcox was recently named the

1987, Professor Willcox took up

immunology. his particular field of

British Contact Lens Association

a fellowship in Australia at the

research is microbial keratitis and

Medalist for 2011.



Australian Scientist




Professor Andrew Scott Director, Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research Director, Centre for PET, Austin Health Professor, Department of Medicine, University of Melbourne Professor Scott has been Head,

based therapy and recombinant

a chief investigator of NHMRC

Tumour Targeting Program,

antibodies. This has culminated

program and project grants, and

Ludwig Institute for Cancer

in six antibodies being taken from

funding from NIH, state and federal

Research (LICR) since 1994,

discovery to humanisation and

governments, and philanthropic

Director of the Centre for PET,

first-in-man trials with Professor


Austin Health, since 1996, and

Scott as Principal Investigator,

The importance of Professor

was appointed Director LICR

and all of these antibodies have

Scott’s contributions to medical

Melbourne (Austin Branch) and

been licensed to pharmaceutical

research is reflected in over 210

Member of LICR in 2005.

or spin-out companies for

publications with more than 4300

Professor Scott’s areas of

further development. As Director

citations in prestigious journals

research interest include tumour

of Centre for PET, Professor

such as New England Journal of

immunology, targeted therapies,

Scott leads the largest academic

Medicine, Lancet Oncology, PNAS,

and molecular imaging of cancer.

m ol ec ul ar imaging pro gram

Journal of Experimental Medicine,

At LICR, he has led a basic and


Journal of Clinical Oncology and

translational oncology research

internationally renowned program

program focused on immune

for novel imaging tracers. He is




Journal of Nuclear Medicine.

Associate Professor Matthias Ernst Interim Director, Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research (Parkville Branch) Associate Professor Matthias

Associate Professor Ernst’s

Ernst was appointed in 1998

research involves a number

as joint-laboratory head of the

of international collaborations

Colon Molecular and Cell Biology

and embraces reverse genetics

tumour formation and research

Laboratory at the Ludwig Institute

in the mouse to dissect molecular

efforts are now focused to translate

for Cancer Research (LICR)

mechanisms regulating epithelial

these findings into new therapeutic

Parkville Branch and is currently

h o m e o s t a s i s i n t h e g a s t ro -


the Interim Director of the LICR

intestinal tract in health and

The importance of Associate

Parkville Branch.

disease. His investigations have

Professor Ernst’s work is evidenced

Associate Professor Ernst is

recently identified epithelial Stat3

by more than 3400 citations and

an NHMRC Senior Research

hyperactivation as a molecular

publications in prestigious journals,

Fellow and Chief Investigator on

mechanism linking inflammation

including Nature Medicine, Nature

a $20 million NHMRC program

of intestinal tumourigenesis. His

Immunology, Cancer Cell, Journal

grant. Recently, he was promoted

group’s complementary interest

of Experimental Medicine, PNAS,

to Member of LICR. He holds

in canonical Wnt signalling

Journal of Clinical Investigation

an honorary appointment at the

genetically established permissive

and Gastroenterology.

University of Melbourne.

signalling thresholds for intestinal


Australian Scientist

“I am persuaded that eventual mastery of cancer will come only from intense and unremitting scientific exploration over many decades” Daniel K. Ludwig December17, 1974

Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research The largest international academic non-profit institute dedicated to understanding and controlling cancer. A global network of ten Branches with leading Affiliates and clinical trial sites. Mission: To improve patient outcomes through integrated programs that translate basic laboratory discoveries into patient benefits through conducting its own clinical trials. Australia: Over 250 scientists, post-doctoral research fellows and students work alongside clinicians and research nurses in the two Melbourne sites embedded in the Parkville and Austin research precincts.


The MeLbouRne–PARkvILLe bRAnCh has an outstanding track record in basic research into the biology of solid tumours with a particular focus on colorectal cancer. The Branch supports stateof-the-art platform technologies, including forward and reverse genetics in different model organisms and complements the human cancer genetics research supported through the Ludwig Colon Cancer Initiative. The Melbourne Branch is one of six founding partners of the Parkville Comprehensive Cancer Centre. The MeLbouRne–AustIn bRAnCh located at Austin Health, is the principal translational and clinical research site for LICR global programs. Laboratory research focuses on cancer immunology, antibody-based therapeutics, signalling pathways in cancer, epigenetics of colon cancer, and tumour biology. Clinical oncology involvement is achieved through the unique joint arrangements with Austin Health in Medical Oncology and Positron Emission Tomography. LICR is a founding partner of the Olivia NewtonJohn Cancer Centre, and will have 93 new laboratories in this facility completed in 2012.


Associate Professor Ricky Johnstone Pfizer Australia Research Fellow Co-Head of Cancer Therapeutics Program Assistant Director Cancer Research Associate



more than $17 million. Reflecting

trials of two HDACi in the treatment

Johnstone is Assistant Director

this success, he was promoted to

of T cell lymphoma.

of Peter Mac Cancer Research

NHMRC Principal Research Fellow

and co-head of Peter Mac’s

in 2009.

Associate Professor Johnstone uses genetically manipulated

Cancer Therapeutics Program.

Associate Professor Johnstone is

tumour models to identify which

To date he has published over 110

seeking to understand the molecular

apoptotic proteins and pathways

peer-reviewed manuscripts.

events underpinning cancer cell

are necessary for the therapeutic

In 2005, Associate Professor

death initiated by chemotherapeutic-

effects of HDACi. Using microarray

Johnstone was appointed as an

drugs and to decipher how tumours

gene expression profiling, he

NHMRC Senior Research Fellow

become multidrug resistant. He

has identified genes involved

and awarded a Pfizer Australia

focuses on inhibitors of the enzyme

in apoptosis that are regulated

Senior Research Fellowship.

histone deacetylase (HDACi) —

differently in tumours and normal

He has since leveraged the outcomes

novel chemotherapeutic drugs

cells, providing a molecular basis

of his fellowship-related research,

that regulate gene transcription by

for the selective effect of HDACi on

being named as chief or co-chief

altering the structure of chromatin

tumour tissue.

investigator on grants totalling

— and recently initiated clinical

Dr Belinda Parker Peter Mac Research Fellow Metastasis Research Laboratory Dr Belinda Parker is an early career

therapies for patients with

scientist at the Peter MacCallum

advanced breast cancer.

Cancer Centre. She was awarded

One of her research projects

University, USA. In addition to

a Career Development Award

has revealed the contribution of

the work on proteases, Dr Parker’s

(CDA1) in 2009 and currently

a specific group of proteases,

research group recently revealed

holds a number of grants, including

the cathepsins, to the spread of

a novel mechanism whereby

one as chief investigator on an

breast cancer to bone and the

cancer cells escape recognition

NHMRC project grant.

potential for blocking cathepsin

by the immune system to be able

Dr Parker’s primary research

activity using specific protease

to survive and grow in bone.

f o c u s i s o n b re a s t c a n c e r

inhibitors as targeted therapeutics.

The results of this study reveal

metastasis. She aims to utilise

This work has been supported by

a novel mechanism of cancer

models of breast cancer to identify

crucial international collaborations

cell outgrowth from dormancy

ke y m o l e c u l a r m e c h a n i s m s

with two leaders in the cathepsin

and an exciting new therapeutic

of spread to distant tissues,

field, Professor Matthew Bogyo at

opportunity to prevent secondary

and to target these mechanisms

Stanford University and Professor

tumours in breast cancer patients.

with the aim of developing novel

Bonnie Sloane at Wayne State


Australian Scientist

Colin House and Dr Andreas Moeller, Cancer Genetics & Genomics Lab

Australia’s only public hospital solely dedicated to cancer, Peter Mac is a leader in multidisciplinary cancer care and a national and international leader in laboratory, clinical and translational research. Fundamental to Peter Mac’s excellence and leadership in cancer research is the fusion of an integrated, sophisticated research facility within a world-class cancer hospital, providing unique opportunities for medical advances to be accelerated and tested and for clinical questions to guide the research agenda. Peter Mac research has experienced an unprecedented and sustained period of growth and development over the past decade. Underpinned by scientific excellence and research leadership, Peter Mac employs 450 laboratory and clinical researchers, a quarter of its total workforce. Former Director of Research Joe Sambrook is emblematic of Peter Mac’s research excellence. His election to the Australian Academy of Science in 2000 recognised his significant contribution to understanding the processes underpinning cancer development. Recent success through our research leadership includes: • Access for Peter Mac patients to many novel therapies and early phase clinical trials. • Driving and nurturing collaborative research programs (AOCS, ASSG, VBCRC, Pfizer TORCH, kConFab, Melbourne Melanoma Project) across Australia. • 20 prestigious peer-reviewed fellowships (Australia Fellowship, NHMRC, ARC, CCV, NBCF, VCA, Viertel, VESKI) awarded to Peter Mac researchers. Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre The best in cancer care, accelerating discovery, translating to cures. For more information about research at Peter Mac: web email



Professor Andreas Strasser Joint head Molecular Genetics of Cancer Division Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research Dr Strasser and his team are

cells have two distinct signalling

Dr Strasser and his team discovered

investigating the control of

pathways leading to apoptosis,

novel regulators that are essential

apoptosis, the cell death program

one triggered by ligation of cell

for initiation of programmed cell

essential for development and

surface “death receptors” and the

death and showed that they function

homeostasis. By using transgenic

other by certain developmental

as sentinels for damage to various

mice over-expressing the cell death

cues, cytokine deprivation or stress

vital intra-cellular structures,

inhibitor Bcl-2, and knockout mice

signals. Using genetically modified

such as the cytoskeleton.

lacking one of its antagonists, they

mice, they could determine

demonstrated that abnormalities in

signalling mechanisms that are

major implications for cancer

the control of apoptosis can cause

responsible for killing useless

research, developmental biology

autoimmune disease or cancer and

or potentially dangerous cells at

and immunology and suggest

render tumour cells refractory to

the different checkpoints during

novel therapeutic strategies for

anti-cancer therapy.

lymphocyte development.

tumours, autoimmunity and

Dr Strasser and his co-workers established that mammalian







degenerative diseases.

molecular biology techniques,

Dr Wai-Hong Tham Postdoctoral Researcher Infection and Immunity Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research Dr Tham’s post-doctoral research

which then initiates a cascade

has focused on how the malaria

of signalling events required for

extremely low levels of this host

parasite Plasmodium falciparum


receptor. Currently, Dr Tham is

invades red blood cells, a process

Dr Tham’s work focuses on

involved in studies elucidating the

critical for parasite survival and

the function of the parasite

effects of this receptor deficiency on

malaria pathogenesis. This deadly

l i g a n d P f R h 4 i n re d b l o o d

parasite invasion. Understanding

parasite inflicts the highest rate of

cell recognition and invasion.

the function of parasite invasion

human mortality, partly due to its

She has recently identified the

ligands is paramount in developing

utilisation of multiple pathways for

host erythrocyte receptor of PfRh4

rational designs for a blood-stage

invasion into erythrocytes.

and shown that this interaction

malaria vaccine to alleviate the 300

mediates a new invasion pathway

million infections a year caused by

utilised by malaria parasites.

Plasmodium falciparum.

For the malaria parasite to enter erythrocytes, parasite ligands must recognise their cognate receptors

I n t e re s t i n g l y , i n m a l a r i a -

on the surface of the erythrocyte,

endemic regions erythrocytes have


Australian Scientist

Celebrating 95 years of medical research For 95 years the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute’s scientists have pursued the mission of Mastery of Disease Through Discovery. Master Mastery of Disease Through Discovery. The institute is home to more than 550 researchers who are working to understand, prevent and treat diseases including cancer – particularly blood cancers and breast cancer – type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, coeliac disease, hepatitis and malaria. We are doing this because: ▶▶▶This year, more than 534,000 new cases of cancer will be diagnosed in Australia

and more than 43,000 Australians will die of cancer.

▶▶▶Breast cancer is the second highest cause of cancer death in Australian women.

One in nine women will be diagnosed with the disease by the age of 85.

▶▶▶More than 140,000 Australians have type 1 diabetes. ▶▶▶Malaria kills up to 3 million people each year.

More than 30 clinical trials based on discoveries made at the institute are currently underway. These include trials of vaccines for type 1 diabetes, coeliac disease and malaria; and trials of a new class of anti-cancer drugs, called BH3 mimetics, for treating patients with leukaemia. To follow our journey as we master disease visit our website or contact us: Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research 1G Royal Parade Parkville Victoria 3052 Tel: (03) 9345 2555 Email:

Support Our Research


Mastery of Disease Through Discovery


9 Global leaders Australian science punches above its weight, as is evident in the extraordinary achievement of scientific heroes like Howard Florey or, more recently, expats Sir Marc Feldmann and Elizabeth Blackburn. This chapter celebrates scientists whose

Jennie Brand-Miller, Biochemist

achievements are of such magnitude that the

Suzanne Cory, Molecular Geneticist

Australian Academy of Science believes they

Peter Doherty, Nobel Laureate

are not only leaders among Australia’s scientific

Ian Frazer, Immunology & Cancer Research

fraternity, but also eminent voices in the global

Martin Green, Solar Energy Researcher

community. One has won fame as a Nobel

John Hopwood, Lysosomal Diseases Researcher

Laureate. Another can point to praise from

Terry Hughes, coral reef researcher

peers, but also sees her work used every time

Kurt Lambeck, Professor of Geophysics

she opens a box of breakfast cereal. A third

Jim Peacock, Geneticist

has changed thinking about clean energy and

Barry Marshall and Robin Warren,

a fourth is not only a prodigious scientist, but

Helicobacter pylori researchers

is also cited as an example of Australia’s

Mike Raupach, Climate Change Research

success as a multicultural nation. The Global

Brian Schmidt, Astronomer

Leaders are candidates to become our next

Terry Tao, Professor of Mathematics

scientific heroes. These are the fifteen scientists

Bob Vincent, Solar-Terrestrial Physics

chosen by the Australian Academy of Science:

John Zillman, Meteorologist



Jennie Brand-Miller BiochemisT

Good eating, good science, good health

Jennie Br and-Miller is unusual. She is a

papers. Her book The New Glucose Revolution is an

practising scientist with an impressive list of academic

international best seller.

publications, and a best-selling author of popular books on diet and health.

Recent population studies by Professor BrandMiller and her team have looked at groups of 5000

“When they made porridge into instant porridge,

people over a decade, and assessed the prevalence

and when they made rice into instant rice, they

of particular diseases while monitoring the diet

made it into food with a high glycaemic index,”

of the subjects.

she says. “Natural uncultivated foods usually have a low glycaemic index.”

“The low-glycaemic diet is actually the traditional diet of most human beings,” says Professor Brand-

The concept of a glycaemic index (GI) came to

Miller. “For example, the Mediterranean diet is low

Jennie Brand-Miller while she was doing research

GI, with pasta, legumes, fruit and vegetables. Vinegar

into Australian Aboriginal diets. The GI ranks the

dressings and alcohol also lower the glycaemic response

carbohydrates in food according to their effect on

to food. This is one element of the Mediterranean diet

blood sugar, a significant driver of general health,

that makes it so healthy.”

but especially important to sufferers of diabetes.

The Indian diet, with lentils, pulses, and basmati

In 2010, Professor Brand-Miller was presented

rice, is also a “low GI star performer” says Professor

with the 2009 Sir Kempson Maddox Award by

Brand-Miller. “High GI diets are a product of modern

the NSW branch of Diabetes Australia. Initially

processing methods, which provide light, fluffy,quick-

attracting a hostile reception from researchers

cooking food.”

and food manufacturers, Professor Brand-Miller’s

Pro f e s s o r B r a n d - M i l l e r s a y s t h a t w h a t

work on nutrition and carbohydrates is widely

contemporary medical practitioners refer to as

acknowledged today.

a “normal” glucose response is actually an abnormal

The Glycaemic Index, an unknown concept only

response to an exceptional diet of processed

two decades ago, is recognised worldwide as an

carbohydrates. “Aboriginal bush foods give an

important tool for maintaining good dietary health.

amazing insight into what was the standard diet for

Professor Brand-Miller has written a number of

humanity,” she says. “And these natural foods have

popular books, as well as more than 200 academic

a low glycaemic index.”


Global Leaders

Suzanne Cory Molecular Geneticist

Looking into the dark heart of cancer

I’m amazed at the strength and breadth of

Professor Cory was born in Melbourne, and studied

Australian science,” says Professor Suzanne Cory,

science at Melbourne University, Cambridge and the

and suggests that isolation and the harsh Australian

University of Geneva. Returning to Australia in 1971,

environment have contributed to this. “We had to

she joined WEHI, becoming the director in 1996. She

learn to stand on our own feet, and our investment in

became the Professor of Medical Biology at Melbourne

science helped us to do this.”

University (1996-2009) and was on the board of

However, she says, Australia is certainly internationally competitive in the sort modern, high-tech research which can be done anywhere in the world.

CSIRO from 2002 to 2007 when she became deputy chairman. As well as the Australia Prize, she has been awarded the Charles S. Mott Prize of the General Motors

“It would be quite wrong if Australia were only to

Cancer Research Foundation, the Royal Medal of

tackle the sorts of science where we have a natural

The Royal Society and a L’Oreal-UNESCO Women

advantage,” she says. “We need knowledge on all

in Science Award. She was elected to the Australian

fronts in order to have a successful and economically

Academy of Science in 1986 and the Royal Society

prosperous society. It is encouraging that a very high

in 1992. She is also an elected member of the US

proportion of Australians have been recorded in surveys

National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy

as being very interested in scientific issues. As science

of Arts and Sciences, the French Academy of Sciences

educators, we should be able to tap in to that interest.”

and the Pontifical Academy of Sciences. In 1997 she

Molecular geneticist Professor Cory was awarded

became a Companion of the Order of Australia and in

the 1998 Australia Prize for her work at the Walter

2009 was appointed Chevalier de l’Ordre National de

and Eliza Hall Institute (WEHI), with her husband

la Légion d’Honneur by France.

Professor Jerry Adams, on the genetic origins

In May 2010 Professor Cory was elected to succeed

of cancer. Cancer, she says, is the result of an

Professor Kurt Lambeck as President of the Australian

accumulation of slight genetic errors; and in order

Academy of Science. She is continuing her cancer

to understand and combat cancer, we need to have

research at WEHI and is a Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow of

an intimate understanding of the life and death of

the University of Melbourne.

the normal cell.



Peter Doherty Nobel Laureate

On the shoulders of giants

Peter Doherty won the Nobel Prize in 1996,

working with nuts and bolts,” he says. “We were

with his colleague Rolf Zinknagel, for “their discoveries

very good at innovation, and I am afraid that this

concerning the specificity of the cell mediated immune

may be declining.”

defence”. In his Nobel Lecture, Peter Doherty described

However Professor Doherty looks forward to

the debt that he owed to his predecessors in Australian

a new era in science, in which dealing with huge

immunology, “a direct consequence”, he said, “of

datasets is only possible through advanced computing.

themes developed in Australia” by Sir MacFarlane

“For example, we’re looking at the genomics,

Burnet, Frank Fenner, and later Gus Nossal, Jacques

proteomics and lipidomics of early influenza virus

Miller, Gordon Ada and others.

infection: these are massive datasets that we can only

Professor Doherty says that, of the awards and

handle through high-powered computing.”

honours which he has achieved as well as the Nobel

“Even if you start out with a clear hypothesis, often

Prize, he particularly values his election to the Australian

you end up by reacting to the huge datasets,” he says.

Academy of Science, to the Royal Society, and to the

“That’s going to be characteristic of 21st century

US National Academy of Science. And he is especially


proud of the 1986 Gairdner International Award for

Traditional laboratory science is still vital, says

Medical Science, Canada, and the Paul Erlich Prize for

Professor Doherty, but a lot of young researchers

Immunology (1983).

are coming in from mathematics and statistics

Australian science, he says, has a history of dealing

and are bringing a whole new and different approach

with Australian issues, but because of the relatively

to biological sciences like cancer researchand

limited science funding, we have needed to be “a bit


cleverer” and have developed a highly cooperative

“ What’s happening in science is a tremendous

ethos. But, he warns, we may be losing the proverbial

convergence, looking at very complex issues,”

Australian ability to improvise and innovate.

he says. “How smart are we? We’re still very limited

“As we abandon our manufacturing industries, we are increasingly losing people who are good at


in our approach, and there are hugely important problems to solve.”

Global Leaders

Ian Frazer Immunology & Cancer Research

Recognition is due to the science that shapes society

When Ian Frazer started his research career,

The vaccine is now produced commercially,

a clunky PC and the back of an envelope were the

and to date more than six million doses have been

best of research aids. Today, he says, computational

distributed in Australia, with more than 54 million

power allows the assembly of such vast quantities

doses given to girls aged 13 to 17 worldwide.

of data that researchers can conduct almost “hypothesis-free science”.

Professor Frazer has received more than 20 national and international awards for scientific research. Among

“We’ll be finding more and more information,

them was Queenslander of the year and Australian of

then writing programs to try and make sense out

the Year in 2006, the International Life Award for

of it,” he says. “It is beyond the ability of an

Scientific Research in 2007 and the Prime Minister’s

individual human being to encompass all the available

Prize for Science in 2008.


Professor Frazer says that he values the

Ian Frazer was born in 1953 in Glasgow,

awards that he has received, not for himself,

Scotland, and studied medicine at Edinburgh

but for the science: “It’s nice to get the recognition

University. In 1974, he spent three months

for science. I think it’s very important to show the

at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical

community at large that science contributes to society,

Research in Melbourne, and returned there in

and the interaction between science and society is

1981 when he became particularly interested

vitally important.

in human papilloma viruses (HPV). In 1985

“We live in a very scientific world. Understanding

he took up a teaching position with the

how science in fact shapes society is something that

University of Queensland and decided to

people are perhaps not yet prepared to accept,” he says.

continue his work with HPV and cervical cancer

“Communicating as scientists with the community is

with his colleague, the late molecular virologist

becoming more and more challenging.”

Dr Jian Zhou. This led to the development

Professor Frazer is currently director of the

of a vaccine that prevents infection with HPV

Diamantina Institute for Cancer, Immunology and

and cervical cancer.

Metabolic Medicine at the University of Queensland.



Martin Green Solar Energy Researcher

Letting the sun shine in

Seldom has the development of a technology

worth of sales made under licence to UNSW,

been more timely. The citation for the Eureka Prize

with this figure soon to be exceeded annually.

for 2010 describes photovoltaics innovator Martin

Research is an ongoing process, and Professor

Green as “a shining light” in the battle against global

Green has developed what is called “third

warming and climate change.

generation” solar cell technology, tapping into

Professor Martin Green is known internationally for

the full thermodynamic potential of photovoltaic

his work on solar cells at the University of New South

conversion. Having created the world’s leading

Wales. He and his UNSW group have spent the past three

photovoltaics research centre, Professor Green has

decades investigating solar cell performance,and have

also been colleague and mentor to many of the

achieved a remarkable success rate.

most distinguished international solar researchers

“It was regarded as a mature technology when we

and industrialists. “Globally, we need a clean,

started,” says Professor Green, “but we were confident

cost-effective, electricity generation option. Photovoltaics

that this was just the beginning. And we were very

provide a solution, provided that we can increase the

conscious that what we were doing was exactly what the

volumes and get the costs down dramatically,” says

world needed, exactly when the world needed it.”

Professor Green.

Professor Green and his team have since improved

Professor Green’s global leadership has been

the performance of this apparently mature technology

recognised by his appointment as chair of the panel for

by over 50 per cent and have been inventors of

review of the US Department of Energy’s photovoltaic

several technologies that have revolutionised the

program, and membership of the United Nations

solar industry.

Industrial Development Organisation Consultative

Professor Green says that commercialisation

Group on Solar Energy Research and Applications.

of his innovative work has always been a priority,

Professor Green has received two Eureka Prizes,

and the team’s early work has been adopted under

a Clunies Ross Award (1992), the Australia Prize (1999)

licence by BP and put into production in Australia,

with Stuart Wenham, and the 2004 World Technology

India and Spain. In association with UNSW,

Award for Energy. He has received several international

the world’s largest manufacturer of solar cells

awards, including the 2002 Right Livelihood Award,

is now in China. Cumulatively, says Professor

commonly known as the Alternative Nobel Prize, and the

Green, there have been more than a billion dollars

2007 SolarWorld Einstein Award.


Global Leaders

John Hopwood Lysosomal Diseases Researcher

Taking the research results into the community The greatest challenge for scientists is

recognition of scientific research is not always

to make sure that they can apply their research

as positive as it might be, especially in the practical

and their knowledge where it is most needed

matter of funding.

by the community, according to Professor John

In 2006, Professor Hopwood and his team

Hopwood, head of the Lysosomal Diseases

announced successful trials of a new treatment

Research Unit based at the Women and Children’s

for two childhood lysosomal diseases, and two

Hospital in Adelaide.

drugs were approved by the USA Food and

Professor Hopwood won the 2008 South

Drug Administration for clinical use. Professor

Australian of the Year Science Award for his

Hopwood has over 380 peer-reviewed scientific

three decades of research into genetic disorders

publications, over 30 international patents and over

that affect children. He leads the 10-member

$30 million in competitive research funding. He is an

committee charged with directing the research

affiliate professor in the Department of Paediatrics

of the new South Australian Health and Medical

at the University of Adelaide and Department of

Research Institute (SAHMRI) being built in

Pharmacy at the University of South Australia.

Adelaide. An extremely ambitious project set

Professor Hopwood has been honoured with

to open in 2013, SAHMRI will house some

the Lemberg Medal for Excellence in Biochemistry,

600medical researchers under the motto “from

a Member of the Order of Australia, a Fellow of the

the research bench to the bedside”.

Australian Academy of Science, Honorary Fellow

“My passion as a scientist is interacting with patients

of the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia,

and their families, when we’ve actually made some

the South Australia Premier’s Science Award for

difference in their quality of life,” says Professor

Excellence in Commercialisation of Research,

Hopwood. “It is a very focusing and rewarding aspect

South Australia Scientist of the Year, ATSE Clunies

of being a scientist in this genetic area. It has kept me

Ross Award and, most recently, was awarded the

motivated for 30 years!”

prestigious 2009 CSL Florey Medal for significant

Professor Hopwood stresses the vital importance of “translating” the work of research scientists

achievements in biomedical science and human health advancement.

into clinical practice and into the community. But at the same time, he suggests that the



Terry Hughes coral reef researcher

The human context

Coral reefs have to be seen in context, says

devastating and far-reaching effects, which are

Professor Terry Hughes. Natural ecosystems cannot

almost impossible to predict.

be treated in isolation, as if they were not part of

“A great deal of the recent literature describes the loss

the human world, the animal world, the oceans

of coral, the decline of the reefs,” he says. “These are

and the atmosphere.

depressing facts, but they shouldn’t be seen in isolation.

Professor Hughes is Director of the ARC Centre

If we ask what are we going to do about it, we can’t

of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook

ignore questions like food security for coastal human

University in Townsville.

populations, or options for future development. People

“In recent years I’ve wandered into what is strange territory for a marine biologist,” he says. “Increasingly

in the vast majority of countries which have coral reefs actually depend on the reefs for their livelihood.”

I’ve been working with social scientists and reef

Because of the links between natural ecosystems

managers, and looking more at the human dimension

and human populations, says Professor Hughes, science

of coral reefs.”

is increasingly adopting a multidisciplinary approach

Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is unusual, says

involving the social sciences as well as ecology.

Professor Hughes, because it is part of a wealthy

“Many researchers,” he says, “including myself,

country, and does not suffer the degradation caused in

are referring to social ecological systems, where people

developing countries by subsistence fishing, subsistence

are not separate from the ecosystem, and everything

farming and deforestation.

we do has an ecological footprint.”

“The Barrier Reef model is admirable, but it’s not

When it comes to encouraging people to modify

a model that is easily exported,” he says. “Effective

their behaviour, Professor Hughes says “the solution

reef management has to be tailored to local conditions

is to stop paying subsidies for more or bigger, but

and availability of local resources.”

to recognise and subsidise change for the better!”

Professor Hughes has a special interest in

Professor Hughes remains optimistic that good

understanding the processes that govern the scarcity

science and good management will save coral reefs in

or abundance of species, and has travelled widely

the long term, especially Australia’s Great Barrier Reef

in the Pacific and Caribbean to observe reefs in

— arguably the best-managed reef in the world.

decline. The loss of biodiversity, he says, can have


Global Leaders

Kurt Lambeck Professor of Geophysics

Understanding how the Earth works

Kurt Lambech is interested in the big questions:

The scientific community is not standing up to this

how the Earth works, why it works the way it does,

as perhaps it should.”

the role of the oceans, the future of the Earth’s inhabitants.

Professor Lambeck is confident that the scientific process is robust. Scientists, he says, are not all

Professor Lambeck was President of the

prima donnas, but at the same time no scientist is

Australian Academy of Science in 2006-2010;

interested in repeating work which another scientist

he was elected to the Academy in 1984, and to

has already done. Research results are published,

the Royal Society in 1994. His international

the work is validated by other researchers and

recognition is shown by his membership of the

becomes part of the accepted body of knowledge,

academies of the Netherlands, Norway, France

or is refuted.“The process is still alive and well,”

and the United States, and the Academia Europaea.

he says. The planet under stress has interested

His international prizes and awards include the

Professor Lambeck in recent years. “The unifying

Tage Erlander Prize from the Swedish Research

theme to my recent work has been the reaction

Council, the Prix George Lemaitre (Belgium)

of the Earth to stress,” he says. “There is a range

and the Eminent Scientists Award from the

of techniques to measure the response of the

Japan Society for the Promotion of Science.

planet to stress, and to predict the response

Professor Lambeck worked in the US and French

to new stresses. We are particularly interested

space science communities before returning

in developments in plate tectonics, and in the

to Australia.

effects of diminishing ice sheets and the ‘rebound’

Professor Lambeck is concerned by what he sees as a “loss of confidence” in the whole culture of science throughout the wider community.

effect as ice disappears.” Asked about his view of the planet’s immediate future, Professor Lambeck admitted that he oscillates

“For example, most of the public accepts the

between admiration for mankind’s capacity for

realities of climate change,” he says. “But through

cleverness, and the reverse. But by and large, he

the activities of some who wish to minimise

thinks, humanity will rise to the challenge and ensure

the perception of the consequences, the public

a viable future for the planet and the species.

is beginning to doubt the authority of science.



Jim Peacock Geneticist

Chief among scientists

It is a binding obligation that scientists should

a global leader in plant science. In 2000, he and his

communicate what they are doing and why, says Dr

colleague Dr Liz Dennis were awarded the $300,000

Jim Peacock.

Prime Minister’s Prize for Science for their work in the

“Scientists have to point out what their work

discovery of the flowering switch gene, a key gene in

could mean in the future, to the environment, to the

determining when plants end their vegetative growth

community, or to the economy,” he says. “And it’s

phase and begin flowering. This discovery will help

important that they communicate in a way which

boost the productivity of the world’s crops. They are

can be understood.”

also working to increase the nutritional value of crops

Although Dr Peacock is recognised around the world

eaten by billions of the world’s poorest people.

for his plant genetics research, he has also devoted

Dr Peacock was chief of CSIRO’s Division of

much of his time to achieving “scientific literacy”

Plant Industry, which he built into one of the world’s

among Australian children. He was instrumental

foremost plant science institutes, from 1978 until

in developing the Academy’s Primary Connections

he retired from the role in 2003. In 2002 he was

program, in which the teaching of science is integrated

elected President of the Australian Academy of

with the teaching of basic literacy in primary schools.

Science. His many other honours include election

“Science is a way of thinking,” says Dr Peacock,

to the Royal Society in 1982, the BHP Award for

and he is proud too of CSIRO’s Scientists in Schools

Science Excellence in 1988, and election to the

program, in which some 1800 working scientists are

US Academy in 1990.

‘paired’ with science teachers across Australia. “It’s

In 1994, Dr Peacock was made Companion of the

been an amazing success for the scientists and the

Order of Australia (AC), and in 2006 he was appointed

teachers as well as for the children,” he says. “The

Australia’s Chief Scientist.

scientists can’t resist the eagerness of the children,

“People are very attracted to the truth,” says Dr

and the teachers enjoy working with the scientists,

Peacock. “The skill is to remove the mystery and

gaining more confidence in teaching science. It’s been

misinformation and bring the truth to them in ways

a wonderful success.”

they will understand.”

Dr Peacock has long been acknowledged as


Global Leaders

Barry Marshall and Robin Warren Helicobacter pylori researchers

Winners of the Nobel Prize

Helicobacter pylori is one of a handful of

a culture of the bacteria.

bacteria which are known to the general public by

“A fter a few days I was vomiting,” says

name. Just as well known are the names of Nobel

Dr Marshall. “The bacteria had indeed started

laureates Robin Warren and Barry Marshall.

attacking the lining of my stomach. And, after

Everyone once knew that stress causes ulcers;

that, people became a bit more convinced!”

it was regarded as a medical “fact”. But two researchers

Dr Marshall is confident that great and original

quite independently had their doubts. In 1981 they

scientific discoveries still come from academic or

met, compared their quite different approaches to

curiosity-driven research.

the problem, and agreed to cooperate on the novel

“The Helicobacter discovery was a reminder that

research program, which led to Barry Marshall and

bacterial infectious diseases were not something

Robin Warren being awarded a Nobel Prize in 2005.

out of the nineteenth century,” says Dr Marshall.

The two scientists had each become interested in

“They are still very much around, and I think that

the probable role of H. pylori in human gastric ulcers.

there may be viral infectious diseases waiting to be

Pathologist Professor Robin Warren was studying

investigated. For example, what causes Alzheimers?

gastric bacteria at the Royal Perth Hospital, where

We don’t know. Even obesity has been linked to

Dr Barry Marshall was the gastroenterology registrar.

gastric bacterial causes.“

“When I met Barry, I was just finishing a paper

Dr Warren and Dr Marshall later collaborated

for publication,” says Professor Warren. “I had a

on a major study showing the beneficial effect of

suspicion that H. pylori was more than just associated

eradicating H. pylori on the relapse rate of duodenal

with ulcers, but was actually the cause, while he was


looking for a suitable clinical research project. So we

As well as the Nobel Prize, the two researchers have

started a joint study, where I did the pathology and he

jointly received the 1994 Warren Alpert Foundation

did the clinical work.”

Prize (Harvard Medical School) and the Paul Erlich

When their research initially met with profound s ke p t i c i s m f ro m t h e m e d i c a l c o m m u n i t y ,

and Ludwig Darmstaedter Award (1997), as well as many individual prizes and awards.

Dr Marshall took the radical step of drinking



Mike Raupach Climate Change Research

Global leader in carbon cycle research

Mike Raupach deals in cycles. In his 35 years as

influenced climate change, and is the author of

an active researcher, he has worked on five or six

a number of papers on the subject.

major topics. “These are the great cycles, the cycles

“The large-scale functioning of the Earth and the

of energy, water, carbon and nutrients, which sustain

biosphere have been an inspiration throughout my

the Earth’s systems. Humans are changing these

career,” says Dr Raupach. “It is fascinating that

cycles and interacting with them,” he says.

we have come through a time when we regarded

Dr Raupach was elected a Fellow of the Academy

ourselves as the dominant species, but we are slowly

of Australian Science in 2009, after a long career

realising that our relationship with nature is deeper

with CSIRO, culminating in his present position

than that. It’s a two-way cycle.”

of Leader of the Continental Biogeochemical

Dr Raupach says that his philosophical approach

C y c l e s R e s e a rc h Te a m a t CSIR O M a r i n e

does not in any way detract from the integrity of

and Atmospheric Research. He was a contributing

the science. A central element of the discipline of

author of the IPCC Working Group One Report

science is that one always remains the servant of the

in 2007, and was an inaugural co-chair of

data, always subject to what the observations and

the international Global Carbon Project. His

measurements reveal. However, says Dr Raupach,

main research interests include the movement

good science is not in any way inconsistent with

and storage of heat, water and carbon in

viewing the world as one in which human beings

landscapes; global and continental change,

and the natural world are partners in the great

especially the effects of climate and human land

cycles of nature.

use on terrestrial cycles; the global carbon cycle

“The big challenge today is to meet the enormous

and the ways it is influenced by human activities;

demand for scientific information at every level,

and the mechanics of turbulent flows, such

from the backyard barbecue to the political debate,”

as wind and weather over vegetation.

says Dr Raupach, “while at the same time being

Dr Raupach is recognised around the world as a major contributor to the science of human-


entirely rigorous and maintaining an absolute respect for the scientific process.”

Global Leaders

Brian Schmidt Astronomer

Dark energy in an accelerating universe

Brian Schmidt believes that pure research,

the SkyMapper project, using an automated optical

especially cosmology, can lead to a revolutionary

telescope, situated at Coonabarabran in NSW,

understanding of the world and humanity’s place

to survey the entire southern sky to a resolution

in the universe.

a million times fainter than what is visible to the naked

Dr Schmidt, of the Australian National University’s

eye. At the heart of the system is a 268-million-pixel

Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics,

digital camera, designed at the ANU, able to detect the

was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Australian

age, mass, temperature and position of the billions of

Science, and a Fellow of the US National Academy

stars visible and invisible. Because images are repeated

of Science, in 2008. Among a long list of awards and

a number of times, movement and changes will also

prizes, he won the major Gruber Prize for Cosmology

be detected, and it is hoped that more “dwarf planets”

in 2007. According to the Gruber Foundation report,

such as Pluto will be found in the solar system. The

it was a “crazy result” which delivered the $500,000

southern sky is particularly interesting, says Dr

prize jointly to Dr Schmidt and his team, and a team in

Schmidt, because the galaxy itself cuts through it, and

the US led by Professor Saul Perlmutter.

because southern skies are relatively clear, clean and

The “crazy result” which both teams independently


discovered was that the expansion of the universe

Dr Schmidt, originally from Montana, pays

is accelerating, not slowing as cosmologists had

tribute to the scientific culture in Australia. “There’s

previously predicted. The expansion of five billion years

less power hierarchy in Australia than in the US

ago was slower than the rate of expansion today, and

or Europe,” he says. “For example, it was possible

driving this expansion is the mysterious force of dark

for me as young researcher in Australia to lead an

energy. Einstein’s Cosmological Constant, regarded

international research team, which probably would

by Einstein himself as a blunder, has achieved a new

not have been possible elsewhere. It’s that ability to


give everyone a go, which really gives Australia the

Dr Schmidt and his colleagues are continuing to work towards understanding the accelerating universe, concentrating their attention on exploding stars or supernovae. Dr Schmidt is also active in

ability to do interesting science. It’s quite different to the way the rest of the world does things.” And, says Dr Schmidt, there’s an additional satisfaction in vindicating Einstein.



Terry Tao Professor of Mathematics

Mathematician extraordinaire

When a two-year-old is discovered expounding

I want to see what happens if I make some changes;

mathematics to his fellow toddlers, it’s reasonable

will it still work? If you experiment enough, you get a

to anticipate a bright future for the boy. So it is no

deeper understanding. After a while, when something

surprise that Australian-born Terence Tao was, at

similar comes along, you get an idea of what works and

24, the youngest full professor ever appointed by the

what doesn’t work. It’s not about being smart or even

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

fast. It’s like climbing a cliff: if you’re very strong and

According to his father, Adelaide paediatrician Billy Tao (himself born in Shanghai), the young

quick and have a lot of rope, it helps, but you need to devise a good route to get up there.”

Terry taught himself numbers and letters by

Among mathematicians, Terry Tao is recognised

watching Sesame Street. And from then on his

alongside Dr Ben Green for the Green-Tao theorem on

progress was remarkable: the University of

the occurrence of prime numbers. At a less theoretical

Adelaide at 14, bachelor’s degree at 16, doctorate

level, his work on “compressed sensing” could

at Princeton University at 21, and then joining

revolutionise digital camera technology.

the faculty of UCLA.

In 2010 commentary he wrote for,

Now 34 and married with a young son, Professor

Terry Tao explained that he has become a United States

Terry Tao teaches, gives public lectures to packed

citizen, but retains dual nationality: “Of course, my life

audiences, and has gathered an array of the top

is more than just my work. I am a husband and a father

awards, including the Fields Medal, regarded as the

and a proud citizen of two countries; my homeland of

Nobel Prize for mathematics.

Australia and my adopted country here in the United

Terry Tao, believed to be one of the very best

States. I identify with them both.” He went on: “I enjoy

mathematicians alive today, is a phenomenal solver of

a good meal, a good vacation or a good movie, much

problems, many of them regarded as virtually impossible.

as anyone else would. But mathematics is both my

To explain his ability, he uses a rock-climbing analogy:

profession and my hobby, and the place where it seems

“Before I work out any details, I work on the strategy.

I am best able to make a contribution; so if I had to

Once you have a strategy, a very complicated problem

answer the question ‘Who am I?’ I would have to say,

can be split up into a lot of mini-problems. I’ve never

‘a mathematician’.”

really been satisfied with just solving the problem.


Global Leaders

Bob Vincent Solar-Terrestrial Physics

Making waves in the middle atmosphere

The Earth’s atmosphere is criss-crossed by waves,

As well as working with radar, he has collaborated

moving horizontally and vertically, and Bob Vincent

with a French research group using specially

of Adelaide University is tracking them. Atmospheric

designed balloons, which maintain a pre-determined

waves range from the largest scale planetary waves

altitude near 20 kilometres. “Campaigns using

to gravity waves with scales as short as a few tens of

these free floating ‘super-pressure’ balloons have


proved particularly fruitful in helping to determine

“The important thing is that waves transfer

gravity wave sources in remote regions, such

energy and momentum from one part of the atmosphere

as the Antarctic,” he says. “The momentum

to another,” says Professor Vincent. “These gravity

generated by the breaking waves can be transferred

waves are very similar to the waves of the ocean, except

to the atmosphere, with significant consequences. This

that they travel vertically as well as horizontally. They

research helps us to understand the behaviour of the

are a very efficient mechanism for carrying momentum

atmosphere, and underpins current climate science.”

from the lower atmosphere to higher regions. When

Professor Vincent talks with enthusiasm about

they ‘break’ they can drive large-scale circulations

the sort of ‘field work’ that his research entails.

which need to be incorporated into climate models.

“Designing a wind measuring radar in the laboratory,

“And gravity waves (or more accurately, buoyancy

then going out to remote sites in the Pacific,

waves), which have been studied for more than

or Antarctica, or the Northern Territory, and

150 years, are not to be confused with gravitational

installing and setting up the radar, tuning it,

waves,” he says.

and making sure that it is working properly is fun.”

Professor Vincent is President (2010) of the

Professor Vincent’s research has had a number of

Scientific Committee for Solar-Terrestrial Physics, was

practical applications, including the development of

elected to the Academy of Science in 2004, and is a

radar used for weather forecasting by the Bureau of

member of the Australian Antarctic Science Advisory

Meteorology. Climate change, he says, is an extremely

Committee. Much of his work using radar to detect

serious issue, which requires an immediate response

winds high in the atmosphere has been carried out at

from the community. “Adaptation is not going to be

Davis Base in Antarctica.

easy. The world we are leaving for our children and

Professor Vincent’s research involves measuring the momentum of gravity waves in the atmosphere.

grandchildren is going to be very different to the one that we enjoy,” he says.



John Zillman Meteorologist

Climate, weather and courteous discourse After a distinguished career that has included

hydrologists, oceanographers and other earth system

stints with the Australian Bureau of Meteorology and

scientists and service providers. He has an especially

as President of the World Meteorological Organization,

optimistic view of future developments in his own field

John Zillman AO knows the difference between weather

of meteorology.

and climate.

“The next thing over the horizon is detailed local

Dr Zillman has been one of the most influential

weather forecasting and warning,” he says. “Models

figures in shaping climate science in Australia,

will have the ability to extract the last little bit of

and was a leading figure in the establishment of

information from the observed data, and then provide

the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

an almost limitless amount of forecast information, for

(IPCC). Dr Zillman has a scientist’s respect for

any location, up to six or seven days ahead. It’s already

scepticism and alternative views, but says that he has

gone far beyond what I expected to happen in my

a total commitment to the concept of the IPCC and

professional lifetime, and we’re just at the beginning

its ability to give an objective and balanced view of

of the process.”

the science.

Dr Zillman was Director of the http://en.wikipedia.

Dr Zillman believes that Australian science,

org/wiki/Australian_Bureau_of_Meteorology from

in particular the earth sciences, has a remarkable track

1978 to 2003 and was Permanent Representative

record and an established international reputation,

of Australia with the

despite Australia’s comparative lack of scientific

WMO “WMO” World Meteorological Organization.

resources. He singles out the Antarctic and Southern

He was elected a Fellow of ATSE in 1980 and

Ocean climate, and the considerable body of work

served as President of ATSE from 2003 to 2006.

carried out by Australians in the Southern Ocean as

He was President of the National Academies Forum

one of the important drivers of world climate research.

2005-06 and President of the http://en.wikipedia.

“We pioneered the use of satellites and drifting buoys


for synoptic analysis over the Southern Ocean,” he says,

Engineering_and_Technological_Sciences (CAETS)

“and we managed to squeeze every drop of information

in 2005. He was also a member of the Prime

from sparse Southern Ocean shipping.”

Minister’s Science, Engineering and Innovation

Dr Zillman looks forward to a renewed Australian commitment to space science, and enhanced cooperation between space scientists, meteorologists,


Council (PMSEIC). In 2005 he was awarded the 50th International Meteorological Organization Prize.

Global Leaders



Associate Professor Dissanayake Reader and Associate Professor, School of Psychological Science Director, Olga Tennison Autism Research Centre, La Trobe University A s s o c i a t e Pro f e s s o r C h e r y l

for Research in Child Development

development and autism spectrum

Dissanayake joined La Trobe

and the Australian Psychological

disorders. Her work incorporates

University in 1996, having spent

Society. In 2005 she co-founded

studies of both autistic and normal

three years as a postdoctoral

the Australasian Autism Research

populations and she enjoys

researcher, most of them in

Alliance, and in 2008 established

collaborations with colleagues in

the Department of Psychiatry’s

and was appointed Director of the

Australia, the USA and the UK.

Neuropsychiatric Institute at the

Olga Tennison Autism Research

Current research projects include

University of California in Los

Centre. The Centre has attracted

identification of early markers of

Angeles. A registered psychologist,

large amounts of funding from

autism in infancy (both social-

she is a member of multiple

private and government sources for

cognitive and biological); co-

professional bodies, including the

research into the nature, causes and

morbidity of autism and Fragile X

International Society for Autism

treatment of autism.

Syndrome; self-other relations in

Research, American Association for

Dr. Dissanayake’s research

Psychological Science, The Society

interests are in early social-cognitive

autism; pretend play, and a new area of research, autism in girls.

Jamie Pittock School of Molecular Sciences Director, La Trobe Institute for Molecular Sciences La Trobe University A Fellow of the Australian Academy

boards of eight high-profile

of Science since 2003, Professor

international scientific journals,

recognised as a landmark in cancer

David Vaux is Director of the

which currently include Apoptosis,

research. He continues to play

La Trobe Institute for Molecular

Cell Death and Differentiation,

a leading role in the field, with his

Sciences, an NHMRC Australia

Disease Models and Mechanisms and

work on the IAP family of proteins

Fellow and a recipient of more than

EMBO Reports.

(cellular inhibitors of apoptosis)

a score of prestigious honours and

Professor Vaux is renowned for

and the mammalian antagonists

awards, including the Gottschalk

his discoveries that the oncogene

of IAPs (Smac/Diablo and HrtA2/

Me dal , t h e G l a x o-We l l c om e

Bcl-2 promotes cell survival, and

Omi). He serves on the scientific

(Australia) Prize, the Roche Medal,

that it is a functional homologue

advisory board of TetraLogic Inc., a

the Victoria Prize, the ANZSCDB

of the nematode gene ced-9.

small pharmaceutical company that

President’s Medal, the Lemberg

These findings provided the first

has developed an IAP antagonist

Medal and, most recently, the

experimental evidence implicating

drug that is currently undergoing

MacFarlane Burnet Medal. He has

failure of cell death as a cause

clinical trials for the treatment of

served as a member of the editorial

of cancer in humans and are




Australian Scientist

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Professor Anthony Thomas Australian Laureate Fellow School of Chemistry & Physics The University of Adelaide has

returned to the University of

the American Physical Society.

become a major centre for global

Adelaide to lead the recently formed

Professor Thomas has served as

research into nuclear and particle

Research Centre for Complex

President of the Australian Institute

physics after winning a highly

Systems and the Structure of

of Physics, Vice-President of the

prestigious Australian Laureate

Matter. Before taking his position

Australian Academy of Science,

Fellowship from the Australian

at Jefferson Lab in 2004, he was

Secretary of IUPAP Commission


( A RC ) .

Director of the University’s ARC

C12 and is the inaugural Chair

The Fellowship, one of only 15

Special Research Centre for the

of the IUPAP Working Group

awarded nationwide in 2010,

Subatomic Structure of Matter and

on International Cooperation in

was awarded to internationally

Elder Professor of Physics. Professor

Nuclear Physics (WG.9). Under his

renowned physicist Professor

Thomas’s many awards include the

leadership, WG.9 provided expert

Anthony Thomas FAA, Chief

Harrie Massey Medal (UK Institute

advice to the OECD Global Science

Scientist and Associate Director

of Physics), the Thomas Ranken

Forum Working Group on Nuclear

for Theoretical and Computational

Lyle Medal (Australian Academy

Physics, which prepared a global

Physics at Jefferson Lab, the US

of Science) and the Walter Boas

roadmap for research in nuclear

Department of Energy’s Thomas

Medal (Australian Institute of


Jefferson National Accelerator

Physics). He is a Fellow of the

Facility in Virginia, USA.

Australian Academy of Science,


Fo l l o w i n g re c e i p t o f t h e

the Australian Institute of Physics,

Fellowship, Professor Thomas

the UK Institute of Physics and

Professor Tanya Monro ARC Federation Fellow School of Chemistry & Physics Institute for Photonics & Advanced Sensing Professor Tanya Monro is an ARC

& Research Council, a Bragg

2007-2008 she was the ‘Women in

Federation Fellow and Director

Fellow of the Royal Institution

Physics Lecturer’ for the Australian

of the Institute for Photonics and

of Australia, a Fellow of the Australian

Institute of Physics and in 2006

Advanced Sensing (IPAS) at the

Academy of Technological Sciences

was presented with a Bright Spark

University of Adelaide. The vision of

and Engineering (ATSE). In 2010

Award by Cosmos magazine.

IPAS is to pursue a transdisciplinary

she was a finalist in the Scopus

Professor Monro came to the

research agenda, bringing together

Young Researcher awards and in

University of Adelaide in 2005

physics, chemistry and biology to

2009 was named Emerging Leader

as inaugural Chair of Photonics.

create knowledge and disruptive new

in the Science category in The

She has published over 330 papers

technologies, and solve problems

Weekend Australian Magazine’s

in journals and refereed conference

for health, the environment, defence,

Emerging Leader awards. In 2008

proceedings, and raised over $65

food and wine.

she won the Prime Minister’s

million for research, including

Professor Monro is a member

Malcolm McIntosh Prize for

funding for a building for IPAS.

of the SA Premier’s Science

Physical Scientist of the Year, in


Australian Scientist



Dr Kiran Ahuja School of Human Life Science University of Tasmania The flavour-potent chilli could

showing there is a beneficial

also pack a punch in the future

relationship between the chemicals

standard dose of aspirin on platelet

prevention and treatment of

and the formation of fatty deposits

aggregation and will be followed

diabetes and cardiovascular

on the inner wall of arteries —

up with a dietary intervention study

disease — the leading causes

a precursor to many cardiovascular-

with human volunteers.

of chronic illness and death in

related health issues.

developed countries.

Dr Ahuja says it is possible that,

Most recently Dr Ahuja and her

one day, chillies could replace aspirin,

UTAS School of Human Life

co-researchers have found that

or be combined with aspirin, as a

Sciences research fellow Dr Kiran

capsaicin and dihydrocapsaicin

medication for the prevention and

Ahuja is investigating the biological

inhibit platelet aggregation,

treatment of cardiovascular disease.

activity of the two active ingredients

which can lead to thrombosis or

This work on blood coagulation

of chillies — capsaicin and

blood clots.

follows on from Dr Ahuja’s earlier

dihydrocapsaicin — and whether

This year, Dr Ahuja’s research

investigations for her PhD thesis that

chillies could replace aspirin in

will assess the comparative

showed chilli intake improves post-

preventing blood clots.

effects of aspirin and chilli on

meal glucose and insulin response

Dr Ahuja’s research has focused

platelet aggregation. The study

and hence may play a role in diabetes

on the antioxidant properties of

will investigate what amount of


these two chemicals, with results

chilli gives the same effect as a

Dr Jane Sargison School of Engineering University of Tasmania

Dr Jane Sargison is one of the

attended Oxford University with

She has also conducted consultancy

few active female engineering

this scholarship for three years.

studies for such organisations as

researchers in Australia.

She then returned to Hobart and

Hydro Electric Corporation, Rolls

started as a Research Fellow at

Royce and the Australian Maritime

UTAS in 2001.


Dr Sargison’s ability was recognised as an undergraduate student and she was a University

Dr Sargison’s areas of research are

Dr Sargison co-supervises many

Medallist at the University of

experimental and computational

PhD and masters students in the

Tasmania when she graduated

fluid dynamics, thermodynamics

School of Engineering and teaches

in 1997 with a Bachelor of

and heat transfer. She is chief

some undergraduate courses.

Engineering, first class honours.

investigator in three Australian

She was also a Rhodes Scholar and

Research Council Linkage grants.


In 2009 she was awarded a Rising Star Award from UTAS.

If losing your albatross becomes a pain, take two chillies and see us in the morning.

Australian Scientist

As a hub for globally significant research, Tasmania continues to put runs on the board. Our unique, isolated situation and our focus on distinctive research make UTAS one of the top 10 research universities in Australia. In fact, UTAS continues to be recognised for research results that are international in quality and scope, in areas such as Antarctic and marine studies; sustainable primary production; environment; community place and change; population and health; and frontier technologies. For instance, by tracking Shy Albatross juveniles across the Southern Ocean, UTAS researchers are revealing why they are not surviving long enough to breed. Chillies have been flagged by the UTAS School of Human Life Sciences as a replacement for aspirin in the treatment of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. A study led by theTasmanian Institute of Agricultural Research has created a “scab-free spud” – using cell selection techniques in the pursuit of the perfect potato. And researchers at the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies have discovered that microscopic plants that support the ecosystem are unlikely to survive the predicted warmer winters due to climate change. If you’re interested in the kind of spectacular outcomes that research in a global laboratory test bed can provide, log on to or, and to find out more about the Tasmanian research sector, go to




10 Young Australian scientists The Australian scientists profiled show that the 20s and 30s can be a time of extraordinary productivity. All were selected by the Australian Academy

Stephen Blanksby, Mass spectrometry

of Science as among the Australians most-likely

Marnie Blewitt, Epigenetics researcher

to make significant global impact in coming

Sean Connelly, Coral reef researcher

years. Most also demonstrate how a youthful

Vanessa Hayes, Professor of genomic medicine

perspective can add significantly to our research

Daniela Rubatto, Earth scientist

capabilities. These are the Australian Academy

Ron Smernik, Soil scientist

of Science’s ten rising stars:

Nicole Webster, Marine scientist James Whisstock, Computational biologist David White, Marine geologist Stuart Wyithe, Astrophysicist



Stephen Blanksby Mass Spectrometry

Blood, sweat, tears … and roofing iron

A good tool has many uses, says Stephen

“We have been trying to understand the molecular

Blanksby, and researchers from a diverse range of

structure of tears,” says Dr Blanksby. “The familiar

disciplines are requesting that the mass spectrometry

‘dry eye’ sensation that some contact lens wearers

unit at the University of Wollongong becomes a part

feel may be associated with the lipids in tears. It’s

of their projects.

exciting research.”

“Mass spectrometry (MS) means being able to

The challenge for the future, according to Dr

identify molecules by their weight,” says Dr Blanksby.

Blanksby, is using MS to the greatest advantage,

“This helps us to understand the molecular structure,

applying techniques that are faster, more accurate and

and can be applied to medical research, where we

more selective than traditional MS in order to derive

can observe very subtle changes in cell membranes

more detailed information about molecular structure

associated with diet, exercise, illness or age.

with ever less sample to analyse.

“Using a related technology, we’ve been able to help

Dr Blanksby completed his PhD in 1999 at the

Australian industry by identifying anti-oxidants in the

University of Adelaide, where he undertook mass

polymer coating of roofing iron and fences,” he says,

spectrometry-based studies of highly unsaturated

“and improving these traditional products to cope with

cumulenes of interest in the interstellar medium.

the harsh conditions found on a typical Australian roof!”

He then took up a postdoctoral appointment at the

Dr Blanksby looks forward to a continuing increase

University of Colorado, Boulder, where he worked on

in MS as a research technique, and is proud to find that

using ion-chemistry and spectroscopy to investigate

researchers trained in Australia find a ready welcome

the reactivity and thermochemistry of peroxyl radicals.

in MS chemical and biological laboratories around

Since his appointment to the University of Wollongong

the world, while the Wollongong team is hopeful of

in 2002, he has made significant contributions to the fields

exporting home-grown technologies.

of ion-molecule chemistry and lipid mass spectrometry.

Dr Blanksby and his team have also been

He has published over 70 papers and was awarded the

collaborating with an Australian visual research

2007 Rennie Medal from the Royal Australian Chemical

institute, which has a particular interest in problems

Institute and the 2009 LeFévre Prize from the Australian

associated with contact lenses.

Academy of Sciences.


Young Australian Scientists

Marnie Blewitt Epigenetics Researcher

What makes the genes go round

As well as being a young mother, Dr Marnie

regarded as being a real asset in any lab. They think

Blewitt leads a research team in epigenetics. Highlights

about things from different angles to try to get to the

of her career include journal articles, conference

answer. It’s not difficult for an Australian scientist to

presentations, and a number of awards and prizes.

find jobs in science overseas.”

In 2009 she was awarded the l’Oreal Australia For Women in Science Fellowship.

Dr Blewitt is enthusiastic about the daily tasks of the laboratory researcher. “Lab work is really exciting,”

“The Human Genome Project identified 30,000

she says. “It’s fun. It’s one of the reasons why I went

genes making up a human. But how do the genes

into science in the first place. It’s a pleasure not to have

know which human characteristic they cause?

to sit at a computer all day, but to go into a lab and

If similar or identical genes produce quite different

perform physical experiments. That part of science is

results, then the reason must be something outside

really enjoyable.”

the gene sequence,” she says. “This is the exciting field of epigenetics.”

Biology is the basis of Marnie Blewitt’s enthusiasm. People, she says, are wired differently, and her interests

Dr Blewitt took her degree at Sydney University,

and talents lie in the biological sciences. She hopes

and studied in Paris and Oxford before gaining

her research will lead to some fundamental insights

her PhD in 2004. She is currently a Peter Doherty

into how epigenetics controls the expression of the

Postdoctoral Fellow at the Walter and Eliza Hall

genes. It may also have some important application

Institute in Melbourne.

to disease.

She is confident that Australian science is very

“When epigenetics goes wrong it can cause cancer,”

highly regarded overseas. “Even though researchers

she says. “If we can understand the molecular

in Europe or the United States may have access to a

mechanisms, then perhaps we can design targeted

far larger pool of money, Australian researchers are

therapies to treat these tumours in the most effective

seen as being very resourceful,” she says. “They are

ways possible.”




The numbers of biodiversity

Sharks, corals and no-take fishing zones can

works. The more rigorously we confront models

all be better understood through mathematics, says

with data, the more fruitful that dialogue. It’s when

Sean Connolly.

our data depart unaccountably from our models that

Professor Connolly has an ARC Professorial Fellowship in the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University in Townsville.

things get exciting. “This is what sparks major theoretical change in ecology,” he says.

He uses complex mathematical models to understand

As well as having a distinguished record of scientific

the processes that maintain biodiversity on coral reefs.

publication, Professor Connolly has been very active in

His research findings have been published in Nature,

communicating the results of his research to the public

Science and Ecology Letters, among others.

at large, and he has made a number of appearances

“My research group integrates mathematical

on ABC Radio’s The Science Show, as well as many

modelling and empirical work to examine the causes

public forums, newspaper stories, and radio and

of large-scale patterns in marine biodiversity,” he says.

TV appearances. He was one of a team of scientists

“Happily, much of the empirical work is done wearing

who wrote The Townsville Declaration on Coral Reef

a wetsuit on the Great Barrier Reef.”

Research and Management (2002), and has published

Professor Connolly says that modelling is becoming increasingly important in the ecological

other papers on the effects of climate change and terrestrial runoff on the health of the Reef.

sciences, and that in recent decades it has become

Originally from the USA (he obtained his PhD from

increasingly good at maximising the information

Stanford University in 1999, and moved to James

that can be gleaned from data.

Cook University in 2000), Professor Connolly remains

“Today we can link, quantitatively, models of

optimistic about the future of coral reefs.

ecological dynamics with observations collected now

“Australians love the sea, and the reef in particular is

and over the past decades. This allows us to make more

a national icon,” he says. “Reefs worldwide are being

definitive statements about the degree of uncertainty

degraded, but I think we can avoid a catastrophic

associated with our understanding of how things work,

collapse if we manage our effects on climate and our

and with our projections about the future,” he says.

extraction of reef resources.

“The scientific process is a dialogue between

“Many people depend on the reef for their livelihoods,

our perceptions — empirical data — and our pre-

so it’s in our own interest to protect reefs for future

conceptions — our theories about now nature



Young Australian Scientists

Vanessa Hayes professor of genomic medicine

The science of extremes Vanessa Hayes is a geneticist with an impressive record of laboratory research, but her career has

provides not only a glimpse into humanity’s ancient past

included trekking the Kalahari Desert in search of early

as hunter-gatherers and sheds light into its transition

human genetic characteristics, and encounters with

and expansion as farmers, but will contribute to defining

Archbishop Desmond Tutu and the Tasmanian Devil,

human phenotypic characteristics.

for the same purpose.

“Australia is unique in the way it celebrates its

“I like to go to the extremes of science,”

scientists,” says Dr Hayes. “I’ve lived in many

says Dr Hayes. “That’s why I went to Namibia. Africa

countries and Australia is far ahead of the game

holds a vast untapped resource, which we haven’t

when it comes to recognition and public coverage

used or appreciated. Identifying extreme human

for local scientific research.

characteristics is a great way of rapidly advancing

“It is therefore up to us as Australian scientists to

scientific knowledge on the genetic basis to human

utilise these opportunities and relay our message to

adaption and human disease.”

the public,” she says. “If we cannot communicate our

Prostate cancer is a major cause of death in

science to the lay person, then we have ultimately

Australia, but nearly all the sufferers are of European

failed. We need to take responsibility for implementing

extraction, says Dr Hayes. It is African men, she


believes, who hold the genetic key and who have the

Now a Conjoint Professor of Medicine at the University

greatest incidence of the disease. She believes that all

of New South Wales, and resident in Sydney, Dr Hayes

populations need to be included in DNA databases.

recently accepted a position as Professor of Genomic

Defining the genomic profile of population diversity

Medicine at the J. Craig Venter Institute in San Diego,

will facilitate major breakthroughs in understanding

California. Dr Hayes studied in South Africa, and did a

the origins of multiple complex diseases.

PhD in cancer genetics at the University of Groningen,

In 2010, Dr Hayes travelled thousands of kilometres

Netherlands. She received an Australian-American

through southern Africa and the Kalahari Desert,

Fulbright Professional Scholarship (2009); the Ruth

taking blood samples from poorly defined Khoisan

Stephens Gani Medal for Human Genetics, Australian

(click-speaking) and African Bantu populations. Her

Academy of Science (2008); an Australian Young Tall

work identified the most divergent complete human

Poppy Award for Science (2007); the NSW Premier’s

genomes sequenced to date, including that of Archbishop

Award for Outstanding Cancer Research Fellow (2007);

Desmond Tutu and !Gubi, a Kalahari Bushman.

the BNP Paribas Award for Cancer Genetics (2006); and

This data, published in Nature, provided an additional 1.3

has produced 50 peer-reviewed publications since 1996.

million DNA variations to current databases. This study



Daniela Rubatto Earth Scientist

An enquiring mind amongst the mountains

Daniela Rubatto describes herself as an

to move between Australia and other parts of the

earth scientist who is passionate to find out about

world. Australian science, she says, is extremely

the mountains.

international. Much of her research has been done

“Those great big things on the horizon, how did they

in the western alps of Italy, in the Sikkim Himalaya,

get there? Where do they come from? How long have

and in the interior of Australia. She appreciates what

they been there?” she wonders.

she thinks of as the Australian attitude to scientific

Her main research interest, she says, is in geochronology of metamorphic processes, crustal

research: enjoy it, do not take it too seriously, but be very good at it!

growth and mountain building. In 2002, she

“Although I spend time in the mountains, and

discovered a key geochemical signature in the mineral

I love walking the mountain trails, for my research

zircon in metamorphic rocks that experienced extreme

I do not join extreme field trips, and I do most of my

conditions. This geochemical fingerprint allows the age

‘extreme’ work in the laboratory,” she says. “Life is too

extracted from the mineral to be linked with the pressure

precious, and family keeps me from doing rash things

and temperature that the rocks have experienced, and

or being away too long!”

thus to time the path the rocks have travelled at depth. Dr Rubatto has a particular interest in the mineral zircon, indeed she speaks of it with a surprising fondness. “Zircon never lets you down,” she says. “It’s such a solid material to work with, with so much information contained in it. You can follow millions of years of the Earth’s evolution in zircon, if you just know how to read it. It’s a never-ending puzzle which is a joy to work on!” As a scientist, Dr Rubatto enjoys being able


Young Australian Scientists

Ron Smernik soil scientist

Covering a wide range of disciplines

All human activities ultimately depend on water

to a very different purpose,” he says. “The result is

and air, and the soils which are such a vital part of the

a new perspective on an important material.”

economy and the environment.

Australian scientists, says Dr Smernik, have

Ron Smernik’s research is focussed on soil organic

a certain informality, which stands them in good stead.

matter, a soil component that affects the physical,

They are willing to question authorities and orthodoxies,

chemical and biological properties of soil.

and not be over-awed by the reputations which their

“I have problems with the term ‘soil scientist’,” says

international colleagues may have.

Dr Smernik. “It has the effect of putting things into

“Soil science is also vitally important in

one basket. In fact soil science covers a wide range of

our context,” says Dr Smernik. “Australia may

scientific disciplines.”

not be at the forefront of some of the research

The organic matter that Dr Smernik studies gives

endeavours, but in soil science we more than

structure to soil by holding particles of sand, silt and

hold our own. Even though some of the actual

clay together; it reduces soil strength, enabling root

knowledge that we gather is specific to Australia,

penetration; it enhances water holding capacity and

our research skills will be welcome anywhere

water infiltration; it comprises most of a soil’s nitrogen,

in the world.”

and about half of its phosphorus; and is the source of

D r S m e r n i k w a s a w a rd e d t h e Fre d e r i c k

energy and nutrients for the soil microbes. Finally, soil

White Prize (for researchers under the age

organic matter represents a bigger pool of carbon than

of 40, engaged in one of the physical sciences)

terrestrial biomass and atmospheric CO2 combined.

in 2008. He has a PhD in organic chemistry,

Dr Smernik uses innovative nuclear magnetic

and recently was granted an Australian Research

resonance (NMR) technologies to characterise

Council QEII Fellowship to carry out research

soil properties.

at the University of Adelaide on the influence

“My approach has been to adapt standard chemistry methodologies, in particular NMR spectroscopy,

of organic matter on the toxicity and movement of organic pollutants in soils and sediments.



Nicole Webster Marine scientist

Sponges, microbes and managers Dr Nicole Webster loves sponges, whether they

Dr Webster, who says that she was interested

are under the Antarctic ice or blooming on the Great

in science even as a child, obtained a postdoctoral

Barrier Reef.

fellowship at the University of Canterbury. This enabled

“Sponges and microbes play such an important role

her to carry out research through the New Zealand

in the sea. There are more species of microbes in the

Antarctic base on the use of sponges as bioindicators

ocean than anything else,” she says. “Microbes actually

in a polluted marine environment. The good news, she

make up a greater mass than everything else in the

says, is that despite very heavy pollution in some areas,

ocean put together!

the sponges and their related bacteria are thriving.

“Microbes are at the base of the food chain, so every

Dr Webster, as a working scientist and a young

living thing depends on them,” she says. “And they form

mother of three children, regrets that her opportunities

an astonishing range of symbiotic partnerships, such as

to do field work are diminishing.

the relationships which are essential for the survival of marine organisms like corals and sponges.”

“My role now involves far more planning and collating scientific results, even if it’s exciting research

Dr Webster says that although sponges in particular

work,” she says. “The actual experimental work at the

are useful as indicators of marine health, they are often

laboratory bench is mostly done by students. As for

the poor cousins to corals and “rarely on the radar”

getting into a wetsuit and diving on the reef, it doesn’t

of science and natural resource managers. Sponges

happen as much as it used to!”

may comprise up to 60 per cent symbiotic bacteria,

Dr Webster is concerned that important scientific

and the various organisms that make up a sponge are

concepts such as biodiversity and ecosystem services

highly sensitive to changes in the environment such as

have not had the recognition that they deserve from land

pollution or rising temperatures.

and marine managers, while the scientific knowledge

“ We know that the marine ecosystem depends

that underpins these ideas has hugely increased.

on sponges, especially as highly efficient filters,”

“Environmental change is occurring, and the

says Dr Webster. “But what we also know is that

rate of change is a real threat,” says Dr Webster,

the sponges of the Great Barrier Reef begin to fail

“but I remain hopeful that most species, including us,

as organisms when sea surface temperatures reach

will be able to cope.”

33 degrees Celsius. With impending climate change, this has huge significance.”


Young Australian Scientists

James Whisstock Computational Biologist

Structural and computational biology Professor James Whisstock has been

and in bioinformatics. We use a very big computing

exploring the fundamental shape and structure of

infrastructure to bring all this together.”

components of the living cell, and how they afffect the

One of the most exciting moments of Professor

activities of pathogens and diseases such as cancer.

Whisstock’s research career came when, after 10

The Whisstock Laboratory at Monash University is

years’ work, he and his team were able to determine

internationally recognised for its groundbreaking

the structure of an important protein family belonging

research into the role of proteases and their inhibitors

to the membrane attack complex/perforin superfamily.

in human diseases.

Human deficiency in these proteins may lead to a

In the arcane world of bioinformatics, genomics and protein biology, Professor Whisstock makes a

number of serious diseases as well as an increased susceptibility to bacterial infection and cancer.

surprisingly simple observation: “Shape is a very

“When we worked out the structure, we could

important thing in biology. If you can see what

see, because of its shape, that it was related to a very

something looks like, you can then understand

ancient family of bacterial toxins,” he says. “Perhaps

how it works. And then you can look at changes or

two billion years have gone by, and here are these

mutations, and how they give rise to deficiencies and

two very powerful weapons. One of them is used

ultimately to disease.”

by bacteria against us, and one we can use against the

Professor Whisstock uses x-ray crystallography,

attack of bacteria. It’s a beautiful irony!”

synchrotron light and advanced super-computing

In 2006 James Whisstock was awarded the

to carry out his basic biological research. His early

Science Minister’s Prize for Life Scientist of the

research focus was on bioinformatics and serpins —

Year, in 2008 the Commonwealth Health Ministers

the latter being a group of proteins able to inhibit the

Award, and in 2010 the Australian Academy

proteases that break down proteins and can lead to

of Science Gottschalk Medal. He is currently an ARC

degenerative disease.

Federation Fellow.

“We are lucky to be working in such an exciting

“Australia is a fabulous environment for science,”

period of science,” he says. “There’s been an explosion

says UK-born Professor Whisstock. “Young,

in data, and the increase in computing power permits

enthusiastic researchers are prepared to take risks

so much more to be revealed from the data. Our lab

and be brave … there’s a great ‘can-do’ aspect

deals in pure biology, in genomics, in crystallography

to Australia.”



David White Marine geologist

Keeping the oil and gas industry on a secure foundation Even deep under the sea, structures need to

to simulate the conditions at the sea floor, and we use

have a good foundation, especially if they are carrying

scale models of foundations, anchors and pipelines to

oil or natural gas. Professor David White has made a

assess their characteristics and their behaviour under

study of the difficult and challenging science of oil rigs

realistic operating conditions — for example, during

and seabed pipelines. “Pipelines may have to be laid

cyclones.” Professor White is also interested in the

for hundreds of kilometres, at great depths beneath the

unique characteristics of the Australian sea floor, which

sea, and be able to carry gases or oil, often very hot

are quite different to the northern hemisphere, where

and at high pressure,” he says. “The pipelines don’t lie

ancient rocks, glaciers and rushing rivers provide the

still. They wriggle around on the seabed. And they get

sediments that make up the seabed conditions of today.

longer as they get warmer.”

Australian offshore soils are predominantly made from

A problem facing oil and gas operators is finding out just what lies beneath the ocean, along the route of any

soft carbonate minerals, which are the fossil remnants of organisms that lived in our tropical seas.

proposed pipeline. This is particularly a problem off the

He started his career as a lecturer at Cambridge

Australian coast, where the variability is much greater

University, but moved to Australia to become one of

than in oil and gas bearing areas elsewhere in the world.

the youngest professors at UWA in 2007 at the age

Some Western Australian gas fields now being exploited

of 31. In 2010 he received the Anton Hales Medal

lie in water that is 1200 metres deep at the foot of what,

from the Australian Academy of Science, recognising

on land, would be a vast cliff some 100–200km off the

his contribution to Earth sciences. He has more than

northwest coast.Marine geologists can learn a lot about

a hundred published papers, and has received the

the seabed by using seismic methods that measure

Bishop Medal, the Telford Premium, the RM Quigley

shock waves from detonations and other similar

Honourable Mention and the BGA Prize (twice).

techniques, says Professor White, but ultimately there

As well as receiving academic recognition, Professor

is a need to take samples, bring them to the surface,

White’s work has resulted in designs and techniques

and analyse their mechanical properties. “We receive

that are widely used in engineering practice, and he has

samples at our lab in Western Australia, where we use

been called in as a consultant to oil and gas operators

a centrifuge to replicate the in situ strength of the soil,”

based in London, Houston and Norway.

says Professor White. “We can ramp up the effective gravity within the centrifuge to 200G. This enables us


Young Australian Scientists

Stuart Wyithe Astrophysicist

Back to the Big Bang

Astrophysicist Stuart Wyithe has a

In 2009 he was awarded the Academy’s prestigious

better idea than most about what happened at the

Pawsey Medal for Physics. The citation for this award

very beginning. Astronomy, says Professor Wyithe,

stated that he made “outstanding contributions to

is a cooperative science. The people who make

cosmology, and to our understanding of the likely

observations work closely with the people who try to

structure of the universe as the first stars formed, with

model and interpret them, and he, although he is an

work on the birth of black holes, stars and galaxies”.

astronomer, never actually uses a telescope. The raw

Professor Wyithe says that, although astronomy

materials for his research are numbers, and his tools

has no immediate or predictable commercial rewards,

are normal desk-top computers.

there are occasional unexpected spin-off products

“My main interest is in the first galaxies,” he says. “These are literally the first galaxies formed. We have

such as the Wi-Fi technology patented by CSIRO in 1992.

developed a very good picture of the Universe before

“But the most important spin-off is in terms of

galaxies existed, just three hundred thousand years

training,” he says. “We train a lot of students, and my

after the Big Bang.

students have moved into climate modeling, geothermal

We also have many observations of galaxies as they

research, meteorology and many other very different

existed from a billion years after the Big Bang right down

fields, because they have had a technical training which

to today. However, as yet, we have no observations of

is very transferable.”

the Universe during the important in-between period,

Professor Wyithe is confident that most people find

when the galaxies were forming. Astronomers refer to

science inherently interesting, and most young people

this time as the Dark Ages.”

find it exciting. In recent decades the style of research

After taking a physics degree followed by postdoctoral

has changed with the increase in computing power,

study in astrophysics at Melbourne University,

but there is still an important place for curiosity-driven

Professor Wyithe left Australia to do research at


Princeton University. In 2001 he was awarded a Hubble Fellowship to Harvard. When he returned to Australia he took the position of Australian Research Council Queen Elizabeth II Fellow at the University of Melbourne.



Professor Sonya Marshall-Gradisnik Associate Professor Biochemistry Faculty of Health Sciences and Medicine Associate Professor Sonya

also contributed to the body of

“Validation of novel biomarkers for

Marshall-Gradisnik is one of

knowledge relating to the effect


Australia’s foremost emerging

of doping in sport and she serves

re s e a rc h e r s s p e c i a l i s i n g i n

as Sports Medicine Australia’s


the area of neuroimmunology

national spokesperson.

collaborating with a number

and has been instrumental in

The vital research conducted

establishing the Public Health and

by Associate Professor Marshall-

Neuroimmunology Unit (PHANU)

Gradisnik has attracted more than

at Bond University.

$1.2 million in grant funding and

Associate Professor Marshallis


or researchers, including: • D r



Queensland Health Southern Area Population Health

Much of her work relates

she has produced 32 peer-reviewed

• P r o f e s s o r N a n c y K l i m a s ,

specifically to immunological

papers, five book chapters and two

Miller School of Medicine,

dysfunction in Chronic Fatigue

provisional patents.

University of Florida, USA

Syndrome sufferers and she

Associate Professor Marshall-

is regularly asked to speak to

Gradisnik was recently awarded

community groups on behalf of

funding of $555,000 through

Queensland Health and NSW

the 2009-2011 Queensland

• Professor Herbert Meisleman,

Health. Her research in the area

Government Smart State Science

K eck School of Medicine,

of exercise immunology has

Research Grant for a project titled

Los Angeles, USA.

• P r o f e s s o r O g u z B a s k u r t , University




Dr Patrick Warnke Professor of Surgery Faculty of Health Sciences and Medicine Dr


leading institutions worldwide

internationally-renowned stem

Pa t r i c k

Wa r n k e


who are focussed on developing

cell researcher and plastic surgeon

technologies that will enable

who created world headlines

patients to use their own bodies as

years to teaching through lectures,

after leading a research team

“bio-reactors” to grow replacement

clinical skills training and thesis

that succeeded in ‘growing’ a

bones and organs.

supervision, winning an award

new jawbone for a cancer sufferer

Dr Warnke continues his role

in 2006 for the Best Student

using the patient’s own stem cells.

in this groundbreaking medical

Lectures of the Year within the

The jaw was the first larger tissue

field, drawing Bond University’s

Medical Faculty of the Christian

engineered body part to be grown.

Fa c u l t y o f Health Sc ien c es

Albrecht University in Germany.

In 2007, Dr Warnke launched the revolutionary MyJoint program in

and Medicine into the global MyJoint collaboration.

Germany — a cutting edge tissue-

In addition to Dr Warnke’s

engineering network comprising

extensive research and publication

researchers and practitioners from

portfolio, he has devoted many


A s Pro f e s s o r o f S u rg e r y , he also designed the new surgical curriculum for Bond’s medical students.

Australian Scientist






Professor David Adams Health Innovations Research Institute Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology Pro f e s s o r D a v i d A d a m s i s

Award from the American Heart

a bid to find new treatments for

Director of the Health Innovations

Association. He is currently the

chronic and neuropathic pain.

Research Institute (HIRi) at

elected President of the Australian

RMIT University. The theme

Physiological Society.

Backed by a $1.4 million Australian Research Council

of the RMIT Health Innovations

Professor Adams’ most recent

grant, Professor A dams and

Research Institute is “translating

research involved the potential

his team work with one of

fundamental science into better

for toxins produced by cone

the world’s leading cone snail

health outcomes”.

snails to better control the

experts, Professor Frank Mari,

Professor Adams has received

chronic pain suffered by one in

at Florida Atlantic University.

a Muscular Dystrophy Association

five Australians of working age.

The collaboration with Mari



means RMIT can now broaden


Po s t d o c t o r a l




Fellowship; a Grass Fellowship



its investigation beyond Australian

in Neurophysiology, Marine

peptides, the cocktail of agents

species. The team also works

Biological Laboratory, Woods

in cone snail venom that paralyses

with researchers in the University

Hole, USA; a Beit Memorial

prey. His team focuses on isolating

of Calgary and a group based

Fellowship for Medical Research,

peptides that target particular

in Belgium.

U K ; a n d a B ro n z e S e r v i c e

receptors in the pain pathways in


Jason Seris Graduate Leadership Development Program Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology American leadership program. Seris

Jason Seris, an RMIT University


for the Joint Strike Fighter.


Over the five-year program,

with a Bachelor of Engineering

he will complete five rotations

(Aerospace), first-class honours,

across Rolls-Royce sites. Potentially,

and undertook his internship

he may find himself working in

as part of the RMIT International

Washington DC, Singapore, Tokyo

Industry Experience and Research

and at the company’s headquaters


in Derby, UK.




now joining the Graduate

Australia is a leading partner

Leadership Development Program

in the Joint Strike Fighter

with the GE Rolls-Royce Fighter

program, and Seris and his fellow

Engine Team.

RMIT interns are making a vital

graduate, has become the first

The Fighter Engine Team is

contribution to the development of

Australian to be chosen for

developing the F136, the world’s

the F136 engine, which will power

Rolls-Royce’s prestigious North

most advanced combat engine,

that aircraft.


Australian Scientist

mitch S1710

GLOBALLY CONNECTED, LOCALLY RELEVANT Research with Global Impact With projects addressing issues of concern at local, national and international levels, RMIT promotes ingenuity and creativity to achieve maximum impact.

to enhance European understanding and engagement with the region, tackling vital issues such as the future of cities, people mobility, border security and climate change.

Ground-breaking success in areas including nanotechnology, engineering, aerospace, complementary medicine and ICT, demonstrate the University’s capacity to make its mark in research and innovation. RMIT research focuses on issues of global importance and encourages collaborative approaches, innovative solutions, and timely and relevant outcomes that benefit society.

Throughout the University, multi-disciplinary projects are carried out in close collaboration with RMIT’s research institutes, other Australian and international universities, industry, government and partner organisations.

The new European Union Centre at RMIT will build bridges with Europe to tackle the complex, difficult problems that impact the way we live. The Centre uses RMIT’s strong links with Asia


With globally recognised researchers supported by state-ofthe-art facilities, RMIT offers exceptional opportunities for postgraduate and postdoctoral researchers. For more information visit



Professor Tim Smith Sustainability Research Centre University of the Sunshine Coast

Professor Tim Smith is a leading

adapt to future climate conditions.

Theme of the National Climate

researcher in the fields of climate

Professor Smith is currently leading

Change Adaptation Research

change adaptation and coastal

the Adaptive Capacity Theme in a

Facility Network on Marine

management and Director of the

similar climate change adaptation

Biodiversity and Resources, and

Sustainability Research Centre at

project for South East Queensland,

the Adaptive Learning Theme of

University of the Sunshine Coast.

which represents Australia’s single

the CSIRO Coastal Cluster. Prior

Along with his research partners he

largest integrated climate adaptation

to his appointment at USC he was

was awarded the 2009 Australian

research initiative at the regional

a senior research scientist with

Museum Eureka Prize for Innovative

scale, and involves the Queensland

the CSIRO. He also led the social

Solutions to Climate Change. The

and Australian governments,

science portfolios of two national

award was based on research he

the CSIRO Climate Adaptation

research centres (Coastal and

jointly led with representatives

National Research Flagship, the

Catchment Hydrology CRCs).

from the Sydney Coastal Councils

University of Queensland and

Group, WWF and the CSIRO

Griffith University. He is also

that assessed Sydney’s ability to

currently leading the Communities

Professor Abigail Elizur GeneCology Research Group University of the Sunshine Coast

Professor Abigail Elizur is a

of the Sunshine Coast to become

Researchers are examining the

leading researcher in the field

an important contributor to the

impact of temperature variations

of aquaculture biotechnology.

Australian Seafood Cooperative

on Atlantic salmon breeding stock

She was awarded the University

Research Centre and other major

of different ages in Tasmania

of the Sunshine Coast’s Vice-


in a bid to improve the survival rate

Chancellor’s Medal for Research

Among Professor Elizur’s current

in 2009 for her involvement in

projects is one aimed at “climate-

Prior to her appointment with

a number of major aquaculture

proofing” Tasmania’s $270 million

USC in 2005, Dr Elizur was

research projects, particularly the

salmon aquaculture industry. This

a senior research scientist with

world-first spawning of southern

project, led by Griffith University in

the Queensland Department of

bluefin tuna in captivity.

of eggs.

partnership with USC and Salmon

Primary Industries and Fisheries

Professor Elizur’s expertise

Enterprises of Tasmania, has

and Head of the Fish Reproduction

in fish reproductive physiology

received funding from the federal

Department at Israel’s National

and advancing genetic studies using

government’s Fisheries Research

Centre for Mariculture.

genomics has enabled University

and Development Corporation.


Australian Scientist

Forestry project targets climate change

USC’s climate change research received a boost in May with a $300,000 federal government grant to assess how fast-growing tropical hardwood trees can be better used to combat climate change.

It will enhance the forestry sector’s knowledge of tropical trees adapted to drought, and enable the sector to participate in ground-breaking sustainable carbon pollution reduction schemes.

The large collaborative project—involving USC, CSIRO Plant Industries, and Agri-Science Queensland— establishes the group as the major tropical forestry research provider for Australia in addressing climate change.

The grant from the government’s Forest Industries Climate Change Research Fund was for the Forestry Adaptation and Sequestration Alliance project.

The project will assess the drought adaptation and carbon sequestration rates (the rates at which trees absorb carbon from the air) in tropical hardwood plantations.

Project leader Dr David Lee is Associate Professor of Plant Genetics at USC and a Senior Principal Research Scientist with Agri-Science Queensland in the Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation.

visit University of the Sunshine Coast


Tel: 07 5430 1234

Fax: 07 5430 1111

CRICOS Provider Number: 01595D 139



11Future science Bob Williamson

Most scientists are inspired by the excitement of discovering new things. This has been true for the whole of human history. The joy of working out the explanation for the force of gravity, the special law of relativity, the periodic table, the double helix, or telomeres, is extraordinary. Most scientists know moments of great excitement, even though few of us will shine as brightly in the constellation of science as Newton or Mendeleev, Einstein or Crick, Franklin or Watson, or Elizabeth Blackburn. Until quite recently, science was performed

find opportunities overseas, while equally

by small, elite groups in one place, usually one

accomplished scientists from other places come

university, one city, one country. During the

to live and work here. No country, however

past 50 years, science has become a global

rich, has every facility in every subject, and

enterprise. Australian scientists now live and

Australia has focused on some fields (such as

work all over the world, and most leading

astronomy and immunology, to name but two)

scientific teams are international, made up of

in which it is particularly strong.

collaborators from many countries. We used to speak of the “brain drain” when

A world view of the value of science is now found worldwide. Australia needs science if it

a scientists left their home country to live

is to survive as a prosperous country. To this

and work in another, but now we think of

end, it is vital that Australia nurtures engagement

a “brain balance”, where some Australians

and participation in the global science effort.



We have a relatively liberal visa and citizenship

supporting early-career scientists to achieve

policy for scientists from other countries

work-life balance alongside a career in science.

who want to carry out research here, but

But is science only for the scientists?

should remain vigilant in practice to minimise

Let’s consider the big issues facing governments

employment barriers. We must introduce

throughout the world. First and foremost,

our own scientists to the international science

climate change, global warming and energy

“When is it ethical to use embryonic stem cells? Are genetically modified foods harmful, or helpful?” arena early in their careers. Some lucky ones

policy. Science stories appear every day in the

are selected to mingle with Nobel laureates

media, but which are true? Can we be skeptical

and thousands of budding scientific elite from

without becoming foolish? How much “margin

around the world at meetings like the one at

of error” is there, and who corrects errors if

Lindau on Lake Constance in Germany in 2010.

they are made? Perhaps more importantly,

We must also ensure that scientists who

how do we ensure that politicians and public

leave Australia to work in other countries keep

servants have enough scientific knowledge

in contact and are in our minds when new

(or can get independent, evidence-based

initiatives are funded at home. After their

information from scientists) to make informed

years abroad, they will return with new and

policy and planning decisions?

different approaches that will help to renew and invigorate Australian science.

What of other issues? When is it ethical to use embryonic stem cells? Are genetically modified

Promoting flexible and sustainable career

foods harmful, or helpful? Is the population

paths for our early career scientists will help

growing at an unsustainable rate? Is nuclear

to ensure that ongoing science capability is

power safe? These debates CANNOT cannot

available to tackle the big issues and drive our

be held without those involved having some

nation’s future. Improving mobility between

level of scientific knowledge. Because of this,

research, university, industry and government

education in the principles of science is a matter

sectors, valuing alternative science-based careers

for everyone, not just for scientists.!

outside of academia, and providing career

Australia is fortunate: we have a wonderful

re-entry opportunities for young scientists who

education system. There has been an increasing

experience interruptions or discontinuity in

emphasis on attending university and about a

their research efforts all go a long way toward

third of Australians now study at one of the


Medical Research

30 or so Australian universities, most of which

growing expectation that in future a top-ranking

offer strong science courses. By 2020 I predict

public servant, school principal, politician or

this will rise to 50 per cent, a remarkable

industrialist is likely to have a doctorate.

increase when you consider that a mere

If a doctorate is to be the best qualification for

50 years ago only about 3 per cent of people

any senior appointment, we must ensure that

went on to higher education. In total, there

every PhD is not only trained in depth in his or

are now almost 200,000 students who study

her own subject, but also has a broad knowledge

undergraduate science, engineering, agriculture

of teamwork, media, finance, mentoring and

or information technology in Australian

human relations. Australian universities are

universities. Universities offer exciting new

now responding by ensuring that most PhD

courses combining science with arts or law

students have the opportunity to choose courses

or engineering, creating pathways for a new

that provide these leadership skills.

generation of highly qualified and scientifically literate graduates in a range of professions. However, undergraduate education is only the

For those who are passionate about science, joining the scientific workforce is an important decision. The salaries are not great for junior

beginning. In 2010, anyone aspiring to a career

researchers (although they improve as you

in scientific research would be expected to have

progress). The hours are long, and there is little

a PhD. It is remarkable that about 4000 people

job security, particularly in the university sector.

get PhDs from Australian universities in science,

However, in return, a scientist experiences the

“In future a top-ranking public servant, school principal, politician or industrialist is likely to have a doctorate.” engineering and medicine each year. A doctorate

joy of facing new challenges every day and the

used to be training for a career in research,

reward of solving them using skills that are

usually in a research-oriented university, or

essentially personal, in the knowledge that his

with CSIRO or in a medical research institute.

or her work is a contribution to the future of

Now, however, a PhD trains a young woman

Australian science and the global science effort.

or man for any job that requires a high level

For many scientists, these privileges are

of intelligence combined with the ability to

combined with the wonderful moments of

create, follow and complete a plan of research

participating in the excitement of discovery,

or study. Most students who get a PhD do not

of being at the frontiers of knowledge and

finish up as “boffins” any longer. There is a

blazing new intellectual trails.



Australian innovation patent advantage Ignore it at your potential peril By Caroline Bommer and Peter Treloar

The Facts: In addition to “standard” patents, the Australian patent system offers a unique form of protection called the “innovation patent”. The term of an innovation patent is eight years

“best of both worlds” and thereby strengthen their

compared to 20 years for a standard patent. However,

IP position.

unlike a standard patent, an invention claimed in

The lack of an obviousness test provides a great

an innovation patent does not have to pass the

opportunity for patentees to take advantage of our

test for “inventive step” — rather, it must meet the

innovation patent as a powerful strategic property in its

(lower) test for “innovative step”. Further, in certain

own right and/or to maximise their advantage during

circumstances, it is possible to file innovation patents

litigation. Such was the case in Dura-Post (Aust) Pty

from standard patents and vice versa. With astute

Ltd v Delnorth Pty Ltd [2009] FCAFC 81, where

management, therefore, a patentee can avail of the

the Full Federal Court recently decided to uphold a


Australian Scientist



trial judge’s decision that an innovation patent was not subject to an obviousness test, but rather to the substantially weaker “innovative step” test being something peculiar to Australian jurisprudence. In the Dura-Post case, relating to the simple subject matter of elastically deformable roadside posts, the patentee had filed multiple divisional innovation patents from a standard patent and successfully sued on the innovation patents. The successful innovation patent claims each defined a new, but arguably non-inventive, combination of known features. However, the court concluded,

formalities review. They need not be examined

based on evidence, that in each case the claimed

substantively unless and until the patentee wishes

difference over the prior art, while small, did provide

to establish enforceable rights. In this way, they can

a substantial or “real” contribution to the working of

be both powerful and flexible, as it is clear from this

the invention and as such passed the threshold test.

latest case that minor points of distinction disclosed

The implications and recommendations

within the specification may be sufficient to establish patentable rights. For the same reasons, it is difficult to accurately predict the potential scope of granted but unexamined

The absence of an obviousness test allows

innovation patents of third parties. This arguably

applicants to potentially obtain protection for

provides an added incentive for applicants to attempt

more marginal developments and/or obtain broader

to dominate particular market sectors through

rights for an invention in Australia than would be

innovation patents.

possible in nearly all other jurisdictions. As such,

However, it is worth noting that the innovation patent

we would encourage potential applicants to consider

regime appears to be at odds with one of IP Australia’s

innovation patents as an adjunct to a standard

stated goals — aligning Australian patentability

patent application in order to obtain a fast-to-grant

standards with those of other major jurisdictions such

right with potentially broader claims. They should

as Europe and the US. Such policy considerations

also be considered as an adjunct or alternative for

may give rise to a substantive review or revision of the

developments that would normally at best be protected

regime in due course, although any resultant changes

via the useful, but limited, registered designs regime.

would almost certainly not have retrospective effect.

Importantly, many applicants are already doing this. It

Meanwhile, based on the law as it presently

is undoubtedly preferable to be the holder of innovation

stands, our recommendation is to take full advantage

patents in your particular IP space, than trying to

of the significant strategic and commercial

operate around competitors’ rights, which may prove

benefits that innovation patents currently provide. Your

to be unexpectedly broad and difficult to successfully

competitors may already be doing just that!

challenge. Innovation patents proceed to “grant” after a basic 146

12 Who’s who The Academy’s affairs are conducted by a council of 17 Fellows, elected at the Annual General Meeting, that meets five times each year. It includes the seven-member Executive Committee and other Council members.

Executive Committee of Council President: Professor Suzanne Cory Professor, Molecular Genetics of Cancer Division, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research

Secretary (Physical Sciences): Professor Peter Hall ARC Federation Fellow and Professor, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Melbourne

Secretary (Biological Sciences): Professor Graham Farquhar Professor of Environmental Biology and Associate Director, Research School of Biological Sciences, Australian National University

Secretary (Science Policy): Professor Bob Williamson Honorary Senior Principal Fellow and Professor, Faculty of Medicine, University of Melbourne

Secretary (Education and Public Awareness): Professor Jenny Graves Director, Australian Research Council Centre for Kangaroo Genomics Head, Comparative Genomics Research Group, Research School of Biological Sciences, Australian National University 147


Foreign Secretary: Professor Andrew Holmes Laureate Professor, School of Chemistry, Bio21 Institute, University of Melbourne CSIRO Fellow, CSIRO Molecular and Health Technologies

Treasurer: Professor Michael Dopita Emeritus Professor, Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Australian National University

Council members Professor Andy Gleadow Professor of Earth Sciences, School of Earth Sciences, University of Melbourne

Professor Chris Goodnow ARC Federation Fellow and Chief Scientific Officer, Australian Phenomics Facility, John Curtin School of Medical Research, Australian National University

Professor Doug Hilton FAA, Principal Research Fellow, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research, Melbourne

Professor Richard Hobbs Australian Professorial Fellow, School of Plant Biology, University of Western Australia

Professor Chennupati Jagadish ARC Federation Fellow and Distinguished Professor, Department of Electronic Materials Engineering, Research School of Physics and Engineering, Australian National University

Professor Yiu-Wing Mai University Chair, Professor in Mechanical Engineering and Director, Centre for Advanced Materials Technology, School of Aerospace, Mechanical and Mechatronic Engineering, University of Sydney


Who’s Who

Dr Oliver Mayo Honorary Research Fellow, CSIRO Livestock Industries, South Australia

Professor Hugh Possingham ARC Federation Fellow, Professor and Director, The Ecology Centre, University of Queensland

Professor Michelle Simmons ARC Federation Fellow and Professor, Centre for Quantum Computer Technology, University of New South Wales

Professor Mark von Itzstein ARC Federation Fellow, Professor and Director, Institute for Glycomics, Griffith University


FOCUS copy to come




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Australian SCIENTIST

audae nonse dolla conse aut litiae. Aritis eatemporis quiberrunt harchit ligniet volla num ea aute vendit qui berum volestota volut ent et diciis et ad untion ra parum qui velecus voluptibust que nonsectiist, sam rae eatioritis eos ea ducilitatur aspidem olorepr aeprovidi volorecus ma prem. Busante doluptasi ut ipis aliquosa sequias cuscien daest, aliquam ut ilit officillab id quam faci solupta tionsed min consequation por audis il mil magnam harum unt fuga. Boremporest inverum aliquaestrum quam aut ped qui doluptur maximus dolupta spedit pratio exerum simaximuscit pratur? Quidebitior anda quam, nonse volupis eos eaquo voluptae quatquo eaquia volupta qui ullabor epudam, aut volore porro optature, con exerciti dolora autem vendae volorerum repro et vid ullabo. Itate corrovid maximil incimolorem fuga. Et offici cuptat. Xero molore num quam volent. Dit, adissit ut optatectate nam, tem laboria delestiis aut omnim eum aut hitatum reicti acearum accusae ctionseque nectem laut moluptatus molore sinto corum fugitem arcidi dolupta sperum susam, sunt eum ut quatium a natationse sum de lantibusae sit etur, consequis sit prerumque quunt duciet et lant quid entibus aliquati nosanda seque apis quias idel invenis eaquibus aciunde ped qui venda in cuptatecus rererer atiatque modi odit es non pa explici llorepta del eos pa volor atquissin proraepro erum velesequi con repuda doluptatene et optatib eaquodit omnimporit magnamet evenditiis es eictatem quam eaquas sum que perferum alique porem re nis magnima gnihic tem dit eum, qui utatemo loreic tectore mporeribus aut pro dolo eicias estis am quae commolo reptatque nat. Exercip iendis audaesequis entemporro cuptasp isinci dolupid erchillaci re omnihil mi, sunt, omnihil itature stiorum endero eici dis quo dit pore,


simperf ercium rerit eniscitisqui te et que in nus inulparibus ni nimo od quas as non eium deliscia prorum nulpa voluptatur aut porro qui occabor iaepel inimusa cum, sa volesse quidel mo blant, sant omnihit magnit estiund igendae. Ximusci culpa sinis moluptat haruptatur min pos nonsed ulparibus dollantem re dolorehenit re laceatiusam vel in ratur aciam sus deliti bernatibus vere, con et alit undi dellame aut experci rest autempor sunt aute omni dolor re, sum vel maximus et es que num fugit laborpo rruptat uribusa nditate vel moluptas estiber chitisto velestis doluptae remquibus dis id eos remo tet fugiae vit inim que si unt duntia dolo es eveles quat. Et omnissit omniti dent fuga. Am quia delitatur autassini nimo il et ent offic tet aliquiae quiamenti tentia quos comnim fugia consequi offictate voluptas autem aboresequat porpossit adiatiunt dolupictiat pe isi apis rehendus et porumquam etur, que es aut esent lacessim quodit ea quoditatur aut landaerio blant posa non nus et faccabo. Cim conseque pore dus aut et eat. Vid ut eos quia quam et officient aborror epudia cumenim doluptatiore aspel modia ipienes et ut eserem desto modit qui conet harit, cuptas dolest aut dust, quam qui suntiam endiate aut que prepre explaborest, ut veri reptatiorpor alis et lacitio quas culluptiae simo dia que vendandis et quist est pliquis am conseque quam, conet ad ut esedicia nullaccaepe de nonsequam, quam, ullam quiam quis sa volentis volorrum harciis dolesenecum sinti doluptatur reprorunte netur assum assitat emolest iorrum laborup tatius. Elent. Omnisci issimossi aut de et as doluptati vel idellab oriorio offic torem repera dolorum et a nonem nis ressint, occuptaquam adia dolendae velessequo idite lamendiscias nonsendi delenim inusci nim ratus eatium

harumqui voloreceped quam voloria versperate is as sit officimpos que aceri id que quo et evenimus, corectem qui te nullate ssusdae pernam is eaquatia que nam serspel itatur? Otatatem rempelentur, esed maio doluptatem qui blaut vendic tem quia ad quos nimagnate rem exeriae prores as alicim voloria nosti ut odipissunt volum, con nam consequis abor am haruptur aut doloren ihicil ipid etus saperibus adi ute discil et, ventum dente voluptibus sam aut est, ipicia id mint volendi nonsequi odi odia iume autem laborum recepre, tet dendunt ionest aut utem. Nequame re evendis inus et lationsequi iundunti vellige ntendis et il min porem coribea nist, serum quiae. Namet pre que occaectatur, ut labo. Itatios essectio tenderi taeptae debitaquas sus apisquunt fugit laccabo. Uptation con peroris tecearum alitate velest, si ut ilit viditinusam fugit everaes aut auta cum quat etur? Niendanti occae rem as dolorio ribusam, temporrum ea dolumquibus maio. Loribere optissimus, sitem quaspere sequi cuptati in proresed quam vollabo ritatqui te vendunt ioreptatest, sequi re magnis voluptati optium etus doluptur? Pudici voluptatem experio blaute occuscia ereriorit magnima ionsed minis delibust esequid qui berum eos molut quis ditatque opta similiquo bla doluptatur aut et, occum volupta spicti dia autaquame voluptur, quidi nimi, omnimaio invelectus, te volum labo. Que cone pe consequost quassim poreiunt porumenis moluptas quaes excesequi quam ium dolorit, soluptu repernatur sam, quo opta cullecusam faccus nem quae voluptaero tem utemoluptus sunt acercipsunt qui que atiis am sit hiliquias volum dolest, quibus volendantium aborum qui di omnit que consequatia sit moluptis por ad ut ut autem dunt, que nonesequat arum quod mos et veni quiati


occusant, con rehenis prem. Ovit es alitia et hil mo quos seque ma vellaccus coratios as sime maximolupta delis sitis eiciam, que cor soluptatio ius et idebit ea percimus min consedis es dolupta quunt. Ibusam entium, ipiende pro blam hitioressim ipsunt moluptiis denimi, aut aniet, ut autatiniste cus vellabo reperch illuptatem la debitam illenit, qui doluptus ut lam, que eatus porro conseque sincti comnimpor aut estis as repudiam nem facerum nonsecerum es et ex exero volorpo ritaepe lendem ut postrum ut laccus ad quodit unti ipient quibus, quia debis exceroresti bla illaut rectiatquo maxim fugiaspernat omnis dessintis volorerum, sus am et volupta tquiasp erchit laciasperum initas magnimo digenihit, eosam aut plab in est eossi bea nonse volor sum qui qui accate ad quaspedis ipsant parum ipsus nat liquia nem ut rest, sed quas sint dolorrum nectatur rem volor sollent es essime alist, im cus. Et, nus simossumquam quodit eium suntoreped et eius arum ut accus nat apiet que se consed quae. Hicipid ullaut facim nonet faccaturepre numquibusa destio quis quo con coribeatem qui nonemol uptati si ant. Minimus autet ut iligenem qui con eaqui tem remperum lat ratus expe nienia peliae. Ut elibus deliciet quias delliqui doluptus et arcium explit uteniamet est, autem voluptius minverupti id quo quidebis arit utem quatur res excepelest iumque imo voluptio berum aut as eaquas eicimi, cullam fugiam, endusap iendae nusandit asperib usdam, nonecer eprehen ditatem ilia dit as adi ut dolenim incimossequi volendi tiorescia quistor iatiosae nimus magnien digent venti omnim endiass imincti tota idus eatis eritiassi omnis et ero volupta temolorehent min pro elest ut occatur? Doluptatem illorat endiciuria ius exerum rernatem faces aut quiaeribust, nonempe rionseque ipis eturem ut

hicae commolesti verovid magnatur as res doluptium suntem est et elit id maximus im quat ulparionsed quis eiundis comnita volores es dolupta volo que endus, tecepe iunt et laccatur? Qui unt. Fic to od estet, siminci tempore hentur? Quides ea con poreium esto quis nis doles consercim verem esti reprenis doluptae libeaquos expelendebis inciet aut re, ut et et, omnis arcit res elit quas alitae ea ne cusam si aut maioreium faceped itaque vernam adit, il maximin ienienda eaque veles ut aniet, nihicimenim dolo temolor aut oditatetur? Esenistinum es el et ut dolorempere quidelignam dolest harchic testis et exped qui repudi dest pari sa imagnim re dolesti omnienis doluptat landam ipsam est modignis sument dolo moluptur sunt quis a adit, ommodi to cusciet repersp erchitat restiorit ullesto occaborempe nonsend untusandi disqui idit, sus quia ipsum unt, omniatis im rem et libus debitia quia dolor autem cor magnimilit quaturem nonsera epudita voluptatis etur aut officae occus ullorib eatiasin poreper undipsumquod earum restios des ut ratempo repudit ut erumque reprovitibus eatiorio quaepudi alitatus, sapis velestiononse quae eritetur? Qui quas doluptate cum fuga. At harum que ent, con pratet vitatum sae siminienet quo quibeariore ende comnihic tor siminim sa si volorem ipsanis minvenis qui blab il inum rehenim agnisin usanit voluptae et adis modist, optur sinum et la dolor molese pa con nam sum ipicitempos moluptat. Evenime veni doluptatus ario. At autem dis seniet lab ipsusae cores adio de atquasit aut ad quas quis coristrum et pro que omnis eium faccum, andandenis eos incte rectatat event adit occabor a que nis aute verum es dolupta sperum fugit eatem apeliqu aecesequi dolore inis re, inciasi tasperistium sum que voluptus estrum

expel earum quiatinci odi dolenihilit volorero intios int volent ut arum aut lite es nos as pratet, suntur as ad exernam naturissitae la velique parumquid ulla vella qui demoluptam quo enem qui remqui delest, odiae pario quunt labo. Uptat. Undae nis de nonsed ut ium volorpo rerovidunt aut minis sime nient exerspe diciantis disti venis volorem vollacc ullupti aecupit que niminimus, od quatatq uasperit laborae volestem faccupt aspersp elique volupis is enis rernate adi aute venim sequid quiat accum reius volende mperibust aut quatem faccati beatur? Derio eos eum et, optatur, odi volore vit od quunt, ut andite neceratiam rest, quiae dolut assin raturis nobit omnit maiost, consendionem et pelectur? Volorer ovidebis secto quis et ut unt enimus, quodi dolutat. Antiumq uiamet eum fuga. Adiscid qui dolo molor siniaernamus dendit volo exerio odicid mollition nest maximag nihicia volor mosae es venis aut harum que ped quiaero etus, qui ut faccabo. Ut eiumque remquibus endandaectem volo mincto blabo. Equis et eseque entotatem ad ulpari comniendam, aut ipsam quibus excea nis et eoste doluptam acest adignim assequibus, erum res nimetur suntectur si qui to debitint ist perferi audaero con et parchitiatet as esti debit porem faceptatint quosam quidigent. As quibusapis aut aut lab inumqui dipidit, cone poria sequae porpore, volorer ioribusti cum fuga. Itatat escim ut aut qui ratecepe vendi aut aborum repedios ditias doloris volestia nonse nem eaqui officia veliquas aciduntios dellorro te voluptatium asperor sitatem exped quasinv erchit quam verisquisquo invellam, evendit et quo ipis rem corum reiuribus parchit iuntum non evellaut esed endem anime endest, aut recae vit invelit autectem ut asinvellenis ad quatum es dolore laut et illaut pa dolenis ea vent iuntem



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Australian Scientist: global leaders, international rising stars  

The Australian Academy of Science presents a book of Australian Scientists.

Australian Scientist: global leaders, international rising stars  

The Australian Academy of Science presents a book of Australian Scientists.