23 November 2016:
Centre personnel, laboratories and microscopes were on display at Macquarie University, Wednesday November 23rd, as guests from industry partner Olympus Australia took time out of their busy schedules to visit and to explore the latest in imaging developments taking place at the CNBP.
Hosted by CNBP node leader Prof Jim Piper and CNBP Associate Investigator Dr Yiqing Lu, Olympus Australia’s Kim Everuss (Sales Manager, MIS), Jian Shen (Marketing Manager, MIS), Chunsong Yan (Customer Experience Service Manager) and Clare Kelly (Product Manager specialising in confocal microscopy) were shown the latest in CNBP research, spoke with CNBP researchers and actively inspected tools and techniques related to the Centre’s luminescence related microscopy activity. Of particular focus was Centre work on a ‘plug and play’ time-gated imaging module that could be easily linked to current Olympus microscope setups.
Presentations from CNBP researchers also took place during the visit, outlining biological applications including biomedical diagnostics and drug delivery and leading edge research in the biology of pain.
Prof Jim Piper noted that the visit further cemented the fantastic relationship between the two organisations and that he looked forward to working closely with Olympus Australia with a view to facilitating industry-research benefits for both parties.
Below – CNBP Associate Investigator Dr Yiqing Lu explains the technology involved in the innovative time-gated imaging module.
22 November 2016:
CNBP researchers (CNBP CI Nicki Packer pictured) are coauthors on an exciting new paper reporting on the design and development of upconversion immune-nanohybrids (UINBs) that have demonstrated potential for prostate cancer cell diagnostic detection.
Journal: Scientific Reports.
Title: Stable Upconversion Nanohybrid Particles for Specific Prostate Cancer Cell Immunodetection.
Authors: Yu Shi, Bingyang Shi, Arun V Everest Dass, Yiqing Lu, Nima Sayyadi, Liisa Kautto, Robert D Willows, Roger Chung, James Piper, Helena Nevalainen, Bradley Walsh, Dayong Jin and Nicolle H Packer.
Abstract: Prostate cancer is one of the male killing diseases and early detection of prostate cancer is the key for better treatment and lower cost. However, the number of prostate cancer cells is low at the early stage, so it is very challenging to detect. In this study, we successfully designed and developed upconversion immune-nanohybrids (UINBs) with sustainable stability in a physiological environment, stable optical properties and highly specific targeting capability for early-stage prostate cancer cell detection. The developed UINBs were characterized by transmission electron microscopy (TEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR), dynamic light scattering (DLS) and luminescence spectroscopy. The targeting function of the biotinylated antibody nanohybrids were confirmed by immunofluorescence assay and western blot analysis. The UINB system is able to specifically detect prostate cancer cells with stable and background-free luminescent signals for highly sensitive prostate cancer cell detection. This work demonstrates a versatile strategy to develop UCNPs based sustainably stable UINBs for sensitive diseased cell detection.
The paper is accessible online.
22 November 2016:
Failure to launch: aberrant cumulus gene expression during oocyte in vitro maturation
Hannah M Brown, Kylie R Dunning, Melanie Sutton-McDowall, Robert B Gilchrist,
Jeremy G Thompson and Darryl L Russell
In vitro maturation (IVM) offers significant benefits for human infertility treatment and animal breeding, but this potential is yet to be
fully realised due to reduced oocyte developmental competence in comparison with in vivo matured oocytes. Cumulus cells occupy
an essential position in determining oocyte developmental competence. Here we have examined the areas of deficient gene
expression, as determined within microarrays primarily from cumulus cells of mouse COCs, but also other species, between in vivo
matured and in vitro matured oocytes. By retrospectively analysing the literature, directed by focussing on downregulated genes, we
provide an insight as to why the in vitro cumulus cells fail to support full oocyte potential and dissect molecular pathways that have
important roles in oocyte competence. We conclude that the roles of epidermal growth factor signalling, the expanded extracellular
matrix, cumulus cell metabolism and the immune system are critical deficiencies in cumulus cells of IVM COCs.
22 November 2016:
CNBP’s Macquarie University node welcomes PhD student Vlada Rozova to the team.
She is undertaking her PhD on the mathematical modelling of tumour growth in tissue engineering constructs and is being supervised by CNBP Associate Investigator A/Prof. Andrei Zvyagin.
Vlada’s research interests lie in the field of mathematical modelling of biomedical problems, especially related to cancer. and her background is primarily in Applied Mathematics and Computer Science.
Last year she graduated from the Department of Computational Mathematics and Cybernetics of Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia. While there, and under the supervision of Prof. Alexander Bratus, she developed a mathematical model of interactions between tumours and the immune system in the presence of chemotherapy. Computational methods were applied to solve a constrained optimisation problem and to find an optimal strategy of therapy.
After graduation Vlada spent a year working in a company providing model-based drug development solutions for global pharmaceutical companies and acquired experience in quantitative systems pharmacology, pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic and population modelling.
The goal of her PhD project is to develop a reliable mathematical model of tumour invasion validated by the experiments conducted in her group.
Welcome Vlada! It’s great to have you here.
18 November 2016:
Team ‘Life Whisperers’, composed of CNBP researchers from the University of Adelaide, Melanie McDowall and Jonathan Hall, together with their mentor Michelle Perugini have won first prize in both the Medical Innovations and Research Commercialisation categories of the ‘Australian eChallenge’ competition.
Run by the Entrepreneurship, Commercialisation and Innovation Centre (ECIC) at the University of Adelaide, the eChallenge is a competition based learning experience that develops strategic business thinking for early-stage entrepreneurial ventures. Participants pitch their venture concepts to potential investors from the local business community. This year it attracted 152 teams across a number of categories.
The successful ‘Life Whisperers’ team proposed and pitched to judges, a new non-invasive diagnostic product to help improve embryo selection and ultimately improve positive IVF outcomes. In winning both categories, the team won $20,000 ($10,000 per category) with the money able to be used to help support future startup activity.
Below – Entrepreneur Steven Fang presents Jonathan and Mel with one of their winning cheques.
17 November 2016:
Congratulations to CNBP Investigator Professor Dayong Jin who has been awarded the 2017 John Booker Medal by the Australian Academy of Science.
Professor Jin was described by the Academy as a world leader in his field, with his research opening up many opportunities in biomedical devices, early diagnosis and light-triggered nanomedicine.
You can read the full story of Professor Jin’s success in an article on the UTS news site.
16 November 2016:
Dr John Horsley, CNBP researcher from the University of Adelaide, presented his recent work at the International Conference on Biochemistry held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, October 16th, 2016.
His poster presentation and talk was entitled ‘Controlling the Conformation of a Modified Gramicidin S Cyclic Peptidomimetic with an Azobenzene Photoswitch’.
16 November 2016:
Professor Mark Hutchinson (Director, CNBP) has attended the Society for Neuroscience (SfN) Conference held in San Diego, 12-16th November 2016 and presented a poster with the abstract ‘Does the allodynic spinal cord have a specific colour?’
While in San Diego, Prof Hutchinson also attended the Frontiers in Addiction Research Mini-Convention – ‘Relapse and Recovery: from Mechanistic Understanding to Translational Research.’
Following the conference, the Director (and several members of his team) travelled to Colorado where they visited partner investigators at the University of Colorado Boulder (17th and 18th November 2016) where the latest in CNBP research findings were presented and discussed.
14 November 2016:
CNBP PhD student Saabah Mahbub has won best poster prize at the ‘Research by Degrees Showcase’, an event held by the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Macquarie University.
Saabah’s poster was titled ‘Label-free functional characterization of stem cell cartilage system by hyperspectral imaging (with unsupervised unmixing) for applications in regenerative medicine.’
Posters were assessed by external judges that included Mr Hugh Ong (Commonwealth Bank of Australia), Prof Fred Watson (Astronomer-in-Charge, AAO), Mr Steve Frisken (Finisar Corporation and Founder and CEO, Cylite Pty Ltd) and Dr Stephen Thompson (Lecia Microsystems).
Well done Saabah. Great work at showcasing your science!
14 November 2016:
Dr Sanam Mustafa has organised the visit to CNBP of a key player in the field of G protein-coupled receptors research, Professor Graeme Milligan.
The visit will take place in Adelaide, Friday 25th November 2016 – If you would like to chat with Professor Milligan please contact Dr Sanam Mustafa via email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Professor Milligan’s main research group centres on the function, structure and regulation of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) and their interacting proteins. He has published some 500 peer-reviewed articles on these topics. His research has been cited more than 24,000 times. Professor Graeme Milligan graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry from the University of Birmingham. He went on to do his PhD at the University of Nottingham. Graeme was elected to the Fellowship of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 1998 and, amongst various honours, was the recipient of the Ariens Award for pharmacology from the Dutch Pharmacological Society in 2006 and the JR Vane Medal for Pharmacology from the British Pharmacological Society in 2016. Professor Milligan is currently a Professor of Molecular Pharmacology, Dean of Research, College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences and a Gardiner Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Glasgow. Professor Milligan is also a non-executive director and co-founder of the company Caldan Therapeutics which is searching for novel treatments for type II diabetes.
Professor Milligan will first present a keynote address at the Adelaide Pharmacology Group Meeting at the National Wine Centre on Friday 25th, followed by an afternoon tour of CNBP and one-to-one meetings.