Monthly Archives: April 2016

Prof Packer gives plenary lecture at ASMR

Nicki Packer Low Res Edit 012529 April 2016:

The Australian Society of Medical Research (ASMR) has held its 3rd Annual Newcastle Satellite Scientific Meeting, with CNBP Chief Investigator Prof. Nicolle Packer giving the plenary lecture.

With a theme of ‘Supporting Early Career Research’, the meeting attracted health and medical research focused students, research assistants and Early Career Researchers.

Prof Packer spoke about her current research, with a focus on the structure, function, informatics and application of glycans and their conjugates as molecular markers, looking at their role in cancer, therapeutics and microbial infection.


Imaging for neuroimmune research

cnbplogosquare126 April 2016:

CNBP scientists have authored a new review paper, detailing the latest in imaging technologies for use in neuroimmune related research.

Publication title:  Novel imaging tools for investigating the role of immune signalling in the brain.

Authors:  Jonathan Henry W Jacobsen, Lindsay M Parker, Arun V Everest-Dass, Erik P Schartner, Georgios Tsiminisa, Vasiliki Staikopoulos, Mark R Hutchinson and Sanam Mustafa.

Abstract: The importance of neuro-immune interactions in both physiological and pathophysiological states cannot be overstated. As our appreciation for the neuroimmune nature of the brain and spinal cord grows, so does our need to extend the spatial and temporal resolution of our molecular analysis techniques. Current imaging technologies applied to investigate the actions of the neuroimmune system in both health and disease states have been adapted from the fields of immunology and neuroscience. While these classical techniques have provided immense insight into the function of the CNS, they are however, inherently limited. Thus, the development of innovative methods which overcome these limitations are crucial for imaging and quantifying acute and chronic neuroimmune responses. Therefore, this review aims to convey emerging novel and complementary imaging technologies in a form accessible to medical scientists engaging in neuroimmune research.

The research paper is available online.


Chronic Methamphetamine Self-Administration Dysregulates OxytocinPlasma Levels and Oxytocin Receptor Fibre Density in the NucleusAccumbens Core and Subthalamic Nucleus of the Rat

25 April 2016

Chronic Methamphetamine Self-Administration Dysregulates OxytocinPlasma Levels and Oxytocin Receptor Fibre Density in the NucleusAccumbens Core and Subthalamic Nucleus of the Rat; S. J. Baracz, L. M. Parker, A. S. Suraev, N. A. Everett, A. K. Goodchild, I. S. McGregor and J. L. Cornish; Journal of Neuroendocrinology; DOI: 10.1111/jne.12337.

Fellowship supports study into stress

Michael_Baratta_web22 April 2016:

The Centre for Nanoscale BioPhotonics (CNBP), an Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence is pleased to announce Dr Michael Baratta, Senior Research Associate in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of Colorado Boulder, as the successful recipient of the CNBP-American Australian Association (AAA) Fellowship for 2016.

The Fellowship, coordinated by the AAA and funded by the CNBP, provides US$30,000 to support an American PhD or early career Postdoctoral Fellow who wishes to conduct one year of research at a CNBP research node in Australia.

Dr Baratta, a specialist in brain function and behaviour will explore the use of novel CNBP
biophotonics to examine in real-time, neuro-circuitry activity related to stress. The research will help inform therapeutic efforts focused on instilling stress resilience – a key way in which the body is able to deal with adverse events, situations or environments.

Based at CNBP’s administrative headquarters at the University of Adelaide, Dr Baratta will also collaborate extensively with CNBP researchers at Macquarie University in Sydney.

For further information, the associated CNBP media release can be viewed online.


Kids learn photonics at STEMSEL session

STEMSEL1editweb19 April 2016:

CNBP was happy to host the next generation of young scientists at today’s ‘STEMSEL Photonics’ session at the University of Adelaide node.

STEMSEL clubs, standing for ‘Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths and Social Enterprise Learning’ are an arm of the STEMSEL Foundation which is a not for profit organisation that aims to teach every child how to use electronics.

Over twenty Year 3 to Year 9 students were in attendance at this session, with CNBP researchers Roman Kostecki (a physics focus) and Sabrina Heng (a chemistry focus) helping lead the discussion and activities.

Concepts such as photons, light interaction with matter, Fermat’s principle, emission, absorption, lasers, fibre optics and organic chemistry, were all described and demonstrated.

Both researchers enjoyed the afternoon, showing the kids that science, technology and photonics can be awesomely interesting, as well as really good fun!


Welcome Megan Lim

Megan-Lim_lowrez18 April 2016:

We welcome new PhD student Megan Lim, enrolled at the School of Medicine, University of Adelaide who will be working on the haemoglobin project within the Centre for Nanoscale Biophotonics.

Supervised by Dr Hannah Brown and A/Prof Jeremy Thompson, Megan will also work closely with Tony Orth (CNBP researcher at RMIT University) and Ewa Goldys (CNBP Deputy Director at Macquarie University) on characteristics of haemoglobin autofluorescence and other related activities.

Welcome to the team Megan. It’s great to have you on board!


CNBP student recognised with biotech award


Congratulations to CNBP honours student Emma Wilson from our RMIT University node in Melbourne. Emma was recognised this evening with an award for her ‘Outstanding Achievements in Biotechnology’.

The Award is an industry sponsored award for academic excellence in the RMIT Biotechnology Degree, and it is awarded for best student performance overall.

Emma’s research is focused on investigating the peroxidase-like activity of Fluorescent Nanodiamond (FND) within a traditional bio-sensing assay.

Supervised by CNBP Chief Investigator Associate Professor Brant Gibson, Dr Philipp Reineck from the RMIT node of the CNBP and Professor Vipul Bansal, Group Leader of the RMIT NanoBiotechnology Research Laboratory, Emma is finding her work challenging but extremely rewarding!

“The opportunity to work under the guidance of these three scientists, each with their diverse expertise and perspectives is a great honour,” said Emma. “The award made for a fantastic evening.”