NHMRC Investigator Grants 2023

By Rob Clancy, staff writer

NHMRC Investigator Grants 2023

Exciting research projects covering healthier pregnancy, safer birth and new forms of cancer treatment have attracted major funding in the form of NHMRC Investigator Grants.

Hudson Institute researchers have been backed with funding totalling almost $7.5 million over the next five years. Each project has the potential to make a significant difference, both to the ways we welcome new life into the world and how we manage some the most serious diseases.

Hudson Institute researchers have also been awarded $8 million for six new NHMRC Ideas Grants to work on research projects ranging from the use of nanotechnology to treat pelvic organ prolapse, new strategies for still birth prevention through to cancer and hypertension.

Dr Stacey Ellery is a world leader in researching the role creatine can play in delivering healthier pregnancies for mothers and their babies.

This fellowship will allow me to continue translating studies on dietary creatine supplementation during pregnancy and employ exciting new technologies to explore cellular bioenergetics in reproduction and perinatal complications,” Dr Ellery said.

Investing in health and medical research

The Investigator Grant scheme is NHMRC’s largest funding scheme and a major investment in Australia’s health and medical research workforce. The scheme awards around $370 million in research funding each year.

From 2023, the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) is awarding equal numbers of Investigator Grants to women and men in a new intervention to address gender inequities in research funding.

Prof Ron Firestein Investigator Grant 2023-2028

Targeting the cancer epigenome for therapy

Professor Ron Firestein

Investigator Grant 2023-2028

Amount: $2,897,165

Precision medicine is a vital approach to treating cancer and is based on the unique genetic makeup of each patient’s tumour. This proposal employs an integrative genomic approach to identify the next-generation of precision drugs. The team will use AI technology to integrate genomic data, such as DNA sequencing, RNA expression, and epigenetic information with functional genomics to gain a deeper understanding of cancer vulnerabilities and develop effective and personalised treatments for patients.

Professor Stuart Hooper Investigator Grant 2023-2028

Assisting Infants transition at birth

Professor Stuart Hooper

Investigator Grant 2023-2028

Amount: $2,953,040

The transition from life in the womb to life after birth, is an incredibly challenging and vulnerable period of our lives. For most, the birth of a newborn baby is a joyous occasion, but this event can be marred by tragedy and life-long disability. A world leader in how babies transition to newborn life, Professor Hooper’s aim is to minimise adverse outcomes by understanding why things go wrong and targeting treatments to the different needs of the infants as they transition to newborn life.

Dr Stacey Ellery Investigator Grant 2023-2028

Creatine: the next frontier in nutritional supplements to reduce perinatal brain injury

Dr Stacey Ellery

Investigator Grant 2023-2028

Amount: $1,586,190

Birth complications, caused by arriving too early or after a difficult labour, are associated with poor brain outcomes for the baby. This stems from the baby’s brain cells not having enough energy after birth. Creatine serves as our cell’s back-up energy generator. Dr Ellery proposes that supplementing pregnant women or newborns with creatine will supercharge this battery, ensuring energy resources are available to prevent injury and support growth and development in the event of birth complications.

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