2015 MDHS ECR Network Symposium
On Tuesday the 24th of November 2015, the MDHS ECR Network hosted its Inaugural Symposium. Early Career Researchers (ECRs) from throughout the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences (MDHS) showcased their research in areas ranging from stroke rehabilitation; to Mandarin lexical tone recognition in cochlear implant users; to identifying drugs that modulate immune cell functions.
The Symposium was focused on enabling ECRs to engage with each other across Schools and Departments and making them aware of resources available within the Faculty. It featured guest speakers from the Melbourne Clinical and Translational Sciences (MCATS) Platform, Research, Innovation and Commercialisation (RIC) and the Research Bazaar (ResBaz). It also featured oral and poster presentations by ECRs, which aimed to communicate research being performed at MDHS to a general scientific audience. All presentations were of a very high quality, which made the job of judging very difficult but ECRs from across the Faculty were able to interact with each other and exchange research ideas.
Standout presentations included the Best Oral Presentation winner, Dr Jaclyn Pearson who told a tale of sneaky, subversive little bacterial bugs and gave us a whole new perspective on diarrhea. The People’s Choice award went to Dr Vicki Chrysostomou and her flotilla of swimming mice, for their perspective on the link between exercise and retinal health. Poster prizes from Merck Millipore and Integrated Sciences were awarded to Dr Shivani Pasricha and Dr Liam Johnson, and the Jomar Life Research eBiosciences ECR grant was awarded to Dr Elizabeth Aitken.
Special thanks go to the MDHS Associate Dean of Research, Professor Mary Wlodek for her opening address and ongoing support, and to our Keynote speaker Baroness Susan Greenfield, who captured the audience with her inspiring and witty life story.
We are also very grateful for support from the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences and MDHS Research Development, as well as our very generous industry sponsors; Jomar Life Research, Australian Biosearch, Merck Millipore and Integrated Sciences.
For more information on the MDHS ECR Network and upcoming events, including the Perfect Pitch event in January 2016 and a Post-Grants Gala in April 2016, please stay tuned.
And we look forward to seeing you at our next MDHS ECR Network Symposium in 2016!
2016 MDHS ECR Network Symposium
After the success of the 2015 Inaugural MDHS ECR Network Symposium, the MDHS ECR Network hosted its second annual symposium on Thursday the 20th of October 2016. Early Career Researchers (ECRs) representing the breadth of the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences (MDHS) showcased their research in areas ranging from transplantation of neuron progenitors which regulate colonic muscle motility; to assessment of cardiovascular fitness after stroke; to the effect of high salt on macrophage activation and inflammatory response; to the ethics of fertility preservation for pre-pubertal children.
The Symposium was focused on highlighting the importance of collaboration in addressing important research questions and establishing oneself as a successful research scientist within a field. ECRs were able to engage with members of the Faculty, across each of the Schools and Departments, indicating the specific knowledge and skills they possess which may form the basis for collaborations with those in need of such expertise. ECRs were given the opportunity to describe the research being performed within the MDHS Faculty in a manner appropriate for a general scientific audience, interact and discuss research ideas. ECRs were also made aware of the many unique resources and infrastructure platforms available within the Faculty. It was not surprising that all of the oral and poster presentations were of a high caliber.
Prizes were awarded to outstanding presentations including the Best Oral Presentation winner, Dr Zoe Dyson from the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, whose whole genome sequence analysis indicated the success of the national immunisation in Thailand against endemic Salmonella Typhi. Dr Dyson was awarded a $1,500 travel award, sponsored by the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, University of Melbourne. Dr Amy Chung from the Department of Microbiology and Immunology was awarded second prize, $750 sponsored by Servier, for her investigation of vaccine-induced humoral immune responses using systems serology. The 3rd prize was awarded to Dr Karl Brown from Opthalmology in the Department of Surgery for his talk entitled ‘In vivo pre-clinical trial of a tissue engineered corneal endothelium.’ Dr Brown was awarded $450, sponsored by the Center for Stem Cell Systems.
Above: Dr Zoe Dyson (left) from the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology receiving the first oral presentation prize from Professor Leann Tilley (right).
Above: Dr Amy Chung (left) from the Department of Microbiology and Immunology receiving the second oral presentation prize from Professor Leann Tilley (right).
Above: Dr Karl Brown (right) from Opthalmology in the Department of Surgery receiving the third oral presentation prize sponsored by the Center for Stem Cell Systems.
Margaret Lam from Systems Genomics was awarded $450, sponsored by Eppendorf, for first place in the poster competition. Stacey Gorski from the Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience was awarded the second poster prize of $300, sponsored by the Australian Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) . Samuel Mills, also from the Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience was awarded the third poster prize of $100, sponsored by Stem Cell Technologies.
Above: Margaret Lam (left) from Systems Genomics receiving the first poster presentation prize sponsored by Eppendorf.
Above: Stacey Gorski (left) from the Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience receiving the second poster presentation prize sponsored by ASBMB from Dr Hamish McWilliam (right), MDHS ECR Network Commitee Co-chair and ASBMB representative.
Above: Samuel Mills (left) receiving the third poster presentation prize sponsored by Stem Cell Technologies.
Isabel Lopez Sanchez was awarded the sponsor prize from Eppendorf of a brand new pipette in the size of her choice. Dr Ramin Khanabdali was awarded $500 worth of reagents from Jomar Life Research and Dr Ghazaleh Dashti was awarded the $100 door prize from Logical Freight Solutions.
Above (clockwise from left): Isabel Lopez Sanchez (left), Bao Nguyen (right) on behalf of Dr Ramin Khanabdali, and Dr Ghazaleh Dashti (right) receiving sponsor prizes.
Special thanks go to our inspirational keynote speaker Professor Leann Tilley, who imparted words of wisdom on the essential nature of collaboration and the importance of establishing your research niche.
Above : Professor Leann Tilley delivering her keynote speech about the importance of collaboration.
We are also very appreciative for support from the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience for sponsoring the poster printing, along with our very generous industry sponsors; Servier, Eppendorf, Stemformatics, Jomar Life Research, Australian Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Logical Freight Solutions and Stemcell Technologies.
Above (from left): The 2016 MDHS ECR Network Symposium prize winners Margaret Lam, Dr Zoe Dyson, Samuel Mills, Dr Amy Chung, Stacey Gorski, Dr Ghazaleh Dashti and Dr Karl Brown.
See Updates & Events for more information on the MDHS ECR Network and upcoming events.
We look forward to seeing you at our next MDHS ECR Network Symposium in 2017!
Members of the MDHS ECR Network Committee: Hamish McWilliam (Co-chair), Bridgette Semple (Co-chair), Camille Shanahan (Secretary), Michelle Hall (Treasurer), Claudia Marck, Jaclyn Pearson, Bao Nguyen, Angela Pizzolla, Amy Chung, Kevin Lau, Michelle Hall, Michelle Peate, Jacqueline Heath, Fiona Clay, Khic Prang, Jessica Fletcher, Nicole Hill and David Gonsalvez