Monthly Archives: August 2015

Seminars at Macquarie

Lothar_web28 August, 2015:

Professor Lothar Lilge, from the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, Toronto, Canada undertook two seminars as part of a visit to the Macquarie University research node of the Centre for Nanoscale BioPhotonics, Friday 28th August, 2015.

Professor Lilge’s first talk was titled: “Making PDT work for GBM and other brain tumours: predicting  Photosensitizer accumulation, planning the fluence field and increasing treatment selectivity.” It took place at Macquarie University.

His second talk, titled, “Optical Breast Spectroscopy for Breast Cancer Risk assessment and Identification of women at risk to harbouring early stage breast cancer” took place at the Australian School of Advanced Medicine.

Inspiring female careers in STEM

Sanam Mustafa High Res Edit 016627 August 2015:

CNBP’s Dr Sanam Mustafa was keynote speaker at the 2nd Annual Beach Energy Women in STEM Breakfast, that took place at Thebarton Senior College, Adelaide, on the 27th August 2015.

The event provided a networking and information session for high school aged female students involved in the STEM area.

Also attending was the Minister for the Status of Women and Minister for Science and Information Technology, the Hon. Gail Gago and the Minister for Education and Child Development, the Hon. Susan Close.

Dr Sanam Mustafa’s speech detailed her career choices and the context in which they had been made. Her journey was described as inspirational and was welcomed by all those who attended.

Hon. Susan Close commented,  “What an inspiring speech this morning by Dr Sanam Mustafa at the women in STEM breakfast at Thebarton Senior College – inspiring young female students to succeed in STEM subjects and grasp career opportunities.”

Dr Mustafa has been invited to speak at next year’s event, as well as at the school’s graduation ceremony by Acting Principal Eva Kannis-Torry.

Centre CIs win Eureka prize

Eureka27 August 2015:

A team headed up by CNBP Chief Investigators Prof. Dayong Jin and Prof. Tanya Monro has been recognised for its innovative research in developing super-bright nanocrystals (termed Super Dots), winning ‎the Eureka‬ 2015 Prize for Excellence in Interdisciplinary Scientific Research.

The Super Dots team, consisting of Dayong Jin, CNBP, University of Technology Sydney and Macquarie University; Tanya Monro, CNBP, University of South Australia and University of Adelaide; and Bradley Walsh, Minomic International and Macquarie University, was awarded the prize for its work in the creation and use of nanocrystals that can illuminate hidden diseased cells in a living body and which also has application in the labeling, coding and authentication space.

Based on advances in diverse fields including material chemistry, optical physics, nanotechnology, biotechnology, computational modelling and instrumentation engineering, Super Dot technology is truly interdisciplinary in nature explained Prof. Jin.

“Our invention is a typical example of an interdisciplinary approach.  By sourcing advances in physics, chemistry and biology, we have been able to breakthrough bottleneck issues in material sciences and optical physics, allowing us to develop a new transformational technology.”

He added, “Research within a single discipline is interesting, but interdisciplinary research, working with collaborators with a shared focus as a team, is far more exciting and rewarding.”

Additional information on this winning team is available online from the Australian Museum – Eureka web site.




Best paper award

Jeremy Thompson26 August 2015:

Dr Melanie McDowall and A/Prof Jeremy Thompson (CNBP researchers) shared an award with 3 other authors given by the Society for Reproductive Biology for the best publication in the Society’s journal “Reproduction, Fertility and Development”. The award was presented at the Society’s Annual Conference in August in Adelaide.

The paper was titled: Hyperglycaemia and lipid differentially impair mouse oocyte developmental competence.

Authors were: Siew L. Wong, Linda L. Wu, Rebecca L. Robker, Jeremy G. Thompson and Melanie L. Sutton McDowall

The abstract can be found online:


Photo-acoustics talk at ANU

Ivan Maksymov Low Res Edit 014725 August 2015:

CNBP researchers Ivan Maksymov and Andy Greentree gave an invited talk on photo-acoustics at at the Nonlinear Physics Centre of the Australian National University on August 25th, 2015.

Invited by Prof. Yuri Kivshar, the topic of the talk was the plasmon-enhanced photoacoustic and its application in intravascular photoacoustic imaging.

The talk was very well accepted with many questions and follow-up discussions.

CNBP session at ESA-SRB meeting

ESA meeting24 August 2015:

Nanoscale biosensing in reproductive medicine was the theme of a CNBP symposium at the Annual Scientific Meeting of the Endocrine Society of Australia and the Society for Reproductive Biology for 2015.

CNBP speakers included Prof. Mark Hutchinson, Prof. Ewa Goldys and A/Prof Brant Gibson who presented the concepts/applications of their CNBP work, followed by presentations specifically related to reproduction by Dr Erik Schartner, Mr Malcolm Purdy and Dr Sabrina Heng.

Title talks were as follows:

Mark Hutchinson: New windows into the body.

Ewa Goldys: Through the looking glass: what can we see in the early embryo when we look carefully enough.

Brant Gibson: Nanodiamond for BioPhotonic and Hybrid-Photonic applications.

Sabrina Heng: Microstructured Optical Fibers and Photoswitches: Light-Driven Sensors for
Metal Ions in Biology.

Erik Schartner: Development of optical fibre probes for biosensing applications.

Malcolm S Purdey: A Non-invasive Sensor for Hydrogen Peroxide and pH.

Further information on the meeting is available online.

Allenby Gardens school visit

Michelle-Zhang_web121 August 2015:

CNBP researchers Michelle Zhang and Vicky Staikopoulos visited Allenby Gardens Primary School in Adelaide during National Science Week. They talked to 30+ Year 5 students about the power of light and its use in medical research and diagnosis.

This included discussions on fluorescence in Nature and biology, and the use of advanced optical fibres, probes and lasers to better understand the living body.

Students at this outreach session were also provided with a demonstration illustrating the ‘exciting’ properties of light. Ultraviolet detecting beads containing pigments that change color when exposed to the sun, were used to show the impact of light on differing materials.

Multifunctional lanthanide nanomaterials paper

Dayong Jin  Low Res Edit 009621 August 2015:

CNBP researchers Prof. Dayong Jin and Dr. Yong Liu feature on a recently released publication from Scientific Reports published by the Nature Publication Group.

The paper titled “Multifunctional luminescent nanomaterials from NaLa(MoO4)2:Eu3+/Tb3+ with tunable decay lifetimes, emission colors, and enhanced cell viability”, can be downloaded in its entirety.

Abstract: A facile, but effective, method has been developed for large-scale preparation of NaLa(MoO4)2 nanorods and microflowers co-doped with Eu3+ and Tb3+ ions (abbreviated as: NLM:Ln3+). The as-synthesized nanomaterials possess a pure tetragonal phase with variable morphologies from shuttle-like nanorods to microflowers by controlling the reaction temperature and the amount of ethylene glycol used. Consequently, the resulting nanomaterials exhibit superb luminescent emissions over the visible region from red through yellow to green by simply changing the relative doping ratios of Eu3+ to Tb3+ ions. Biocompatibility study indicates that the addition of NLM:Ln3+ nanomaterials can stimulate the growth of normal human retinal pigment epithelium (ARPE-19) cells. Therefore, the newly-developed NaLa(MoO4)2 nanomaterials hold potentials for a wide range of multifunctional applications, including bioimaging, security protection, optical display, optoelectronics for information storage, and cell stimulation.

Authors: Mei Yang, Youlong Liang, Qingyuan Gui, Bingxin Zhao, Dayong Jin, Mimi Lin, Lu Yan, Hongpeng You, Liming Dai, and Yong Liu.


Lab visits, seminars and lamas

lama_web19 August 2015:

CNBP researcher Mel McDowall, managed to get up-close and personal with a llama named Marco, during her recent trip to South America.

Mel was visiting the Instituto de Investigation y Tecnologia en reproduccion Animal (INITRA), at the Universidad de Buenos Aires, where she was hosted by Pablo Cetica, a long time collaborator in the field of cattle embryo metabolism.

In addition to meeting a number of research groups, including horse and cattle reproduction units, she also gave a departmental seminar “Master class: measuring metabolism in the oocyte and pre-implantation embryo”.

The technologies created within the CNBP were accepted with a large degree of enthusiasm and there was plentiful talk about future collaborations and possible research placements in Adelaide.


Alf Garcia-Bennett at IMMS-9

Alfonso Garcia-Bennett (2)20 August 2015:

Alf Garcia-Bennett, CNBP Research Fellow, has given an oral presentation at the 9th International Mesostructured Materials Symposium (IMMS-9) with an abstract titled “.”

The event, at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre, facilitated discussion on progress and perspectives, fundamental challenges for synthesis chemistry, and industrial applications of mesostructured materials. Approximately 350 participants, 200 posters and about 10 exhibitors featured at the conference.

For more information, please refer to the conference website:


In recent years new approaches to the synthesis of mesoporous materials have been developed focusing on the use of non-surfactant templates that can offer new functions within the mesoporous produced without the need to eliminate the pore forming agent. Such functions may include the use of pharmaceutically active compounds as pore forming agents or the use of chiral compounds to transcribe a chiral surface within the pores. Furthermore, avoiding the need to remove the pore template by calcination has both environmental and economic consequences.

Recently we reported the synthesis of mesoporous material NGM-1 nanoporous guanosine material-1) which is prepared through the use of supramolecular template guanosine monophosphate (GMP), a nucleotide monomer in messenger RNA. The supramolecular assembly of GMP occurs via the formation of G4-quartets, hydrogen bonded species that supported via pi-stacking interactions form chiral hexagonal columnar species. These are stabilized via the  formation of cations (cations (Na+, K+, Rb+, Sr2+) which may direct the formation of various supramolecular structures.

The synthesis and structural properties of a variety of GMP template materials will be reported, highlighting the effects that the pore template has on the pore surface. Evidence based on a variety of techniques including X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy and circular dichroism as well as other spectroscopic methods will be utilized in order to show the chiral transcription of the template within the pores of the ordered mesoporous materials produced.