Monthly Archives: July 2015

Welcome Hanna McLennan

Student Hannah McLennan31 July 2015:

The ‘Spark of Life’ biological challenge team, welcome Hanna McLennan to the CNBP team (pictured left with Mel McDowall), who will be starting her PhD candidature on 10th August, 2015.

The title of Hanna’s project is “The Spark of Life: Characterising Events Before, During and After Fertilisation of Cumulus Oocyte Complexes” and she will be investigating signalling events that allow for “oocyte activation” or “oocyte-embryo transition”, following fusion between eggs and sperm.

Hanna will be using using cattle COCs as a model for larger mammals and unique tools generated within the CNBP, to be able to capture the first signals of life.

Hanna will be supervised by Mel McDowall, Jeremy Thompson and Sabrina Heng within the University of Adelaide node of the CNBP.

Learning to innovate at commecialisation workshop

ATP Innovations_sq30 July 2015:

The focus was on commercialisation at the recent “Entrepreneurs workshop” organised by the EMCR Network NSW, in collaboration with ATP Innovations, a leading startup incubator/accelerator in Sydney.

Attended by a number of early and mid career CNBP researchers (Alfonso Garcia-Bennett, Arun Dass, Andrew Care, Denitza Denkova, Xiaoxue Xu and Annemarie Nadort), the event, held July 30th 2015, aimed to inform and empower EMCRs on the roadblocks in the successful translation of research.

Speakers at the workshop included:

-Jennifer MacDiarmid, CEO of EngeneIC
-Shaun Jackson, founder of Kinacia, co-founder of ACBD
-Alan Taylor, Executive Chairman of Clarity Pharmaceuticals
-Helen Pask (MQ), Startups in Physics
-Eitan Bienstock (Director for Growth) ATP Innovations startup accelerator
-Bill Kerr, Department of Industry, Research Connect

A panel discussion (chaired by Alfonso Garcia-Bennett) also featured, with topics relevant to entrepreneurship and commercialisation covered – such as Entrepreneurial Skills, Networking, Finance, Startup grants, USA/Australia/EU Investors, IP issues and success in entrepreneurship.

In terms of outcomes, CNBP researchers at the event advanced their knowledge on commercialisation and partnership strategies, learnt about pitfalls and opportunities through the life stories of the experienced speakers and strengthened their networks with the life science industry in Sydney.

Additional event information is available from the following web site –

Morphine and mindfulness podcast

Mark Hutchinson Low Res Edit 016430 July 2014:

Find out more about chronic pain in this hour long podcast,  ‘Morphine and Mindfulness – Same Room, Different Windows’, a live recording of a public panel discussion, part of the ‘Art in Pain’ program series.

Featuring CNBP Director Mark Hutchinson and other invited panelists, the use  of morphine-type drugs called opiates, as well as therapeutic techniques of mindfulness, are both discussed in their effectiveness as strategies in treating and dealing with pain.

Information on the event, which took place July 22, 2015, as well as on the ‘Art in Pain’ program more generally, can be found online, with the podcast also available as a direct link from the Hawke Centre web site.


CNBP researchers get ‘Fresh’

Fresh-Science-Vic_web29 July 2015:

Summarizing your research and why it matters in one sentence is hard enough! But when you’re in front of a camera, with a microphone and a curious channel 7 reporter looking at you intently, you really do have to be prepared to get your simple message across. This is what CNBP researchers Daniel Drumm and Philipp Reineck learnt quickly at this year’s ‘Fresh Science Victoria’ program, that took place in Melbourne, July 28-29th , 2015.

The ‘fresh’ program, encouraging public and educational outreach from early career researchers, saw two intensive days of activity (July 28-29) for the two CNBPers who:

– had a full outreach training day at Scienceworks
– workshopped their scientific activity into language clearly understandable to a lay audience
– met with people from Channels 7 and 9, The Age, 3AW and Triple M
– explored the different needs of radio vs. print vs. television media
– met Victoria’s Lead Scientist, Leonie Walsh
– worked on inverting their communication thinking to present the global results first
– presented their projects to the public with a sparkler as a timer (Bright Sparks)
– distilled their work into as few a syllables as possible via haiku and limerick
– met some amazing young scientists from around Victoria with a broad set of skills (physio, geomatics, cancer research, biomechanics, and physics)
– presented their work on stage to an audience of high-school students at Melbourne Museum

Further information on Fresh Science – Stories of discovery from early-career researchers around Australia – is available online.

RMIT team visits CSIRO Clayton


28 July 2015:

CNBP researchers Tony Orth, Ashleigh Heffernan, Andrew Greentree and Brant Gibson, all from the Centre’s RMIT node, visited CNBP Partner Investigator Yonggang Zhu, at the CSIRO Clayton site on July 28th 2015.

Explored were ongoing collaboration opportunities, as well as a tour of Dr Zhu’s impressive laboratory facilities.  Thursday October 1st, 2015 will see a partner launch between CNBP and CSIRO, further strengthening ties between the two organisations.

Presentation at WOMBAT

Ivan Maksymov Low Res Edit 014722 July 2015:

An abstract from authors Ivan Maksymov and Andrew Greentree from the CNBP RMIT Node, was presented by Ivan Maksymov as an oral contribution at the ‘Workshop on Optomechanics and Brillouin Scattering: Fundamentals, Applications and Technologies (WOMBAT)’, Wednesday 22 July 2015.

The talk, detailing the plasmon-enhanced Brillouin scattering effect and how it can be used in novel miniaturised intravascular imaging systems with increased resolution was very well received with questions from audience and a fruitful discussion during the coffee break.

The WOMBAT workshop brought together international expertise in the field of physics and applications of optoacoustic interactions, creating a bridge between classical and quantum aspects of optomechanics and Brillouin scattering. The invited speakers were Prof. K. Vahala (Calthech, USA), Prof. G. Bahl (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA), Prof. P. Ralich (Yale University, USA) and many others.

Further information can be found on the WOMBAT website:

European focus

Herbert Foo22 July 2015:

Dr Herbert Foo, CNBP Technical Officer, visited the Otto Schott Institute of Materials Research (OSIM), the Institute for Physical Chemistry (IPC) at Friedrich Schiller University (FSU) Jena and the Institute of Photonic Technology (IPHT) in Jena, Germany for six weeks from the 17th June to 22 July, 2015.

At OSIM he performed glass fabrication and characterisation experiments together with members in Prof Lothar Wondraczek’s group, which is an internationally renowned group for glass science research. Herbert also performed initial experiments using Tip Enhanced Raman Scattering (TERS) Raman spectrometry analysis for amino silane functionalised glass slides at Prof Volker Deckert’s group at IPC and IPHT. This group is famous for their expertise in TERS Raman spectroscopy imaging with 10 nanometers spatial resolution. Initial experiments were performed collaboratively by Herbert and Dr Zhenglong Zhang. The results were promising which suggests this technique is feasible for surface analysis for thin film. Herbert also performed a presentation, introducing CNBP to Deckert’s group meeting on the 2nd July 2015.

On the 13th July, 2015, Herbert joined Dr Georgios Tsiminis and Dr Erik Schartner from the Adelaide node of the CNBP in a day visit to IPHT.

A productive series of visits, Herbert had a lot of fruitful scientific discussions with members in FSU Jena and IPHT. He also gained a lot of hands-on experience in advanced glass fabrication and characterisation techniques as well as with surface analysis techniques using TERS Raman spectroscopy. More collaboration in these research areas are expected in the future.

James McWha Award of Excellence goes to Hutchinson

20 July 2015:

The 2015 James McWha Award of Excellence has just been announced by the University of Adelaide, with Director for the Centre for Nanoscale BioPhotonics, Mark Hutchinson, a very worthy recipient.

The award, recognizing outstanding alumni who have graduated from the University of Adelaide within the past 15 years,  looks at those individuals who are making a significant contribution as emerging leaders within their profession or their community.

Professor Mark Hutchinson was judged to have contributed significantly to the field of medical science, particularly for his impact on the understanding of the role of opioids in central immune signalling and neuropathic pain.  Also cited were his multiple leadership positions and the numerous national and international awards he has won for his research.

Further information on the award, as well as past recipients can be found from the University of Adelaide Alumni web site.


Imaging talk at Chemical Proteomics Symposium

Nicki Packer Low Res Edit 012517 July 2015:

CNBP Chief Investigator Nicki Packer gave an invited national talk at the 2nd Chemical Proteomics Symposium, held at the Children’s Medical Research Institute (CMRI) in Sydney, Australia.

Her talk was titled, “MALDI imaging mass spectrometry of N-linked glycans on formalin-fixed tissue: differentiating tissue types.”

Further symposium information is available here.

CNBP at Chemical Proteomics Symposium

chris_ashwood-low-rez417 July 2015:

Macquarie University CNBP PhD candidate, Christopher Ashwood, gave a poster presentation at the 2015 Chemical Proteomics Symposium, held at the Children’s Medical Research Institute in Sydney, Australia.

Chris’ work demonstrated links between metabolite and glycomic analysis and was titled: “Effect of carbon source on the protein glycosylation pathway of Trichoderma reesei RUT-C30.” The presentation was based on a paper by Christopher Ashwood, Helena Nevalainen and Nicolle H. Packer.

The 2015 Chemical Proteomics Symposium covered a broad range of topics related to modern Medicinal Chemistry and Proteomics and featured a dedicated session on current and future challenges of bioinformatics in proteomics research.