University of Sydney and University of Newcastle Shine in Health and Medical Research Stakes
The University of Sydney and the University of Newcastle topped the list of metropolitan and regional universities in the biggest ever investment of $673.7 million for health and medical research, the Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Mark Butler, announced on 17 October.
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17 October 2011
The University of Sydney and the University of Newcastle topped the list of metropolitan and regional universities in the biggest ever investment of $673.7 million for health and medical research, the Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Mark Butler, announced today.
The University of Sydney received the greatest amount of funding for research institutions nationwide, with $87.8 million for 149 grants. Researchers at the University of Newcastle will benefit from $12.7 million in 21 grants, as the highest achiever of all of Australia’s regional universities.
In total, NSW universities and medical research institutes will receive 305 grants totalling $179.6 million, through the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC).
This investment in research will ensure that NSW and Australia stays at the forefront of the frontiers of health and medical research.
“These grants support NSW’s research community to continue to do what they do so well – making cutting edge discoveries that improve the diagnosis, treatment and cure of illnesses that touch all Australians,” Mr Butler said.
“Our investment will ensure that young researchers have a solid foundation for their career, experienced researchers can run innovative research projects and clinicians can integrate their clinical skills into research practice.
“The Gillard Labor Government is committed to supporting Australia’s role as the clever country. That is why the Government continues to fund health and medical research at record levels.”
NSW researchers receiving funding include specialists in older people’s health, HIV treatment and eye health.
- Dr Dafna Merom will receive $575,593 to investigate whether social dancing can help prevent falls in older people. She will determine whether a twelve-month dancing program provides the same protective effects as other exercise by improving balance and cognition, as well as having potential mental and social benefits.
- Associate Professor Frank Lovicu, a University of Sydney researcher, will receive $332,175 to look at ways to prevent blindness by blocking the changes in the eye that cause cataracts. Cataracts, the loss of transparency in the eye lens, are a leading cause of blindness in older Australians. This research has the potential to prevent cataract formation in the longer term, reducing preventable blindness.
- Professor John de Wit of the University of NSW will receive $419,897 to determine when and why people who are HIV positive start antiretroviral treatment. The study will examine the potential public health impact of promoting antiretroviral treatment use on the HIV epidemic, contributing to the better use of treatments and HIV prevention.
- Associate Professor Peter Schofield of the University of Newcastle will receive $743,450 to determine whether an olfactory (smell) test can be used for early detection of Alzheimer’s disease. As the sense of smell is one of the first of the first facilities to deteriorate with Alzheimer’s, this diagnostic method has the potential to improve early stage treatment rates.
For more information, please contact the Minister's Office on (02) 6277 7280
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