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Charge transfer in helical peptides

1 September 2017:

Understanding the electronic properties inherent to peptides is crucial for controlling charge transfer, and precursory to the design and fabrication of bio-inspired next generation electronic components.

However, to achieve this objective one must first be able to predict and control the associated charge transfer mechanisms.

Here CNBP researchers demonstrate for the first time a controllable mechanistic transition in peptides resulting directly from the introduction of a side-bridge.

Journal: RSC Advances.

Publication title: A controllable mechanistic transition of charge transfer in helical peptides: from hopping to superexchange.

Authors: Jingxian Yu (pictured), John R. Horsley and Andrew D. Abell.

For more information, access the paper here.

School tour of Braggs labs

31 August 2017:

Caritas College students visiting the University of Adelaide for a ‘science day’ were shown around laboratory spaces in the Braggs Building by CNBP PHD students Kathryn Palasis (pictured) and Georgina Sylvia.

The 23 Year 9 school students were given a tour through a synthetic chemistry lab and then spoke with both CNBP researchers about the work being done and their journeys through University. This was followed by a further tour through a fibre-optics laboratory.

According to Kathryn, “The students seemed engaged and interested, particularly with the fibre-optics tour. And feedback from Amy (who organised the day) was that the students enjoyed it and that the teachers were very appreciative. Personally I spoke to a girl who said she was interested in studying science at university which was very pleasing to hear, and hopefully we encouraged others to see it as an appealing career path as well.”

New CNBP research assistant

16 August 2017:

CNBP would like to welcome Robyn Kievit to the team. Located at the University of Adelaide, Robyn has joined the CNBP as a research assistant. She will primarily work within the Origins of Sensing biological challenges group (understanding the role of brain immune signals in the creation of chronic pain) with Dr Sanam Mustafa. Robyn will also set-up standard sensor validation protocols for testing of novel sensors being developed by Prof Andrew Abell’s team.

It’s great to have you on board Robyn!

Low-power nonlinear photonic effects

15 August 2017:

Dr Ivan Maksymov from CNBP’s RMIT University node, visited the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Macquarie University Aug 15, 2017 and gave a well attended seminar.

The talk centred on the theory  of low-power nonlinear photonic effects and was formally titled, “Nonlinear optics with low-power light: Transduction of acoustic nonlinearities into the optical domain.”

Girls in Physics

15 August 2017:

Emma Wilson, CNBP PhD student has participated in a ‘Girls in Physics’ outreach program run by the Vicphysics Teachers’ Network in Melbourne, August 15, 2017.

The program, a breakfast event whereby female scientists working in physics or related areas, are teamed up with a table of Year 11/12 female students, is an opportunity to encourage young women to take up further studies in STEMM related subjects after high school.

“This year the main speaker presenting was Katie Mack, an Astrophysicist,” says Emma.

“The aim of the breakfast is to inspire young women and to have people such as myself on hand to answer any questions the students might have regarding a career as a scientist.”

Australian-French Entrepreneur Challenge

13 July 2017:

PhD team ‘ReMind’, which includes CNBP researcher Vicky Staikopoulos as CFO, has won the  Australian-French Entrepreneur Challenge held in Adelaide over two days, 11th-12th July, 2017.

The challenge (with 49 invited PhD students from all over Australia) required students to work continuously for 24 hours in teams of six, to come up with an idea and to then pitch it to a panel of judges containing some of Australia’s top entrepreneurs.

Team ‘ReMind’ presented their idea for a tactile gaming device for helping the elderly improve their balance and co-ordination to help prevent falls. The device utilised ultrasound waves to create a holographic touch screen.

Sixteen judges, including Susan Close MP (The Minister for Education & Child Development and Higher Education & Skills) as well as the new French Ambassador to Australia (His Excellency Mr Christophe Penot) were all part of the judging panel.

As winning team, ‘ReMind’ members have won a trip to France for two weeks with the opportunity to be mentored by experienced entrepreneurs.

Further information on the award and the team’s success can be found in an article on the ABC website.

Below – The ReMind Team hard at work during the challenge.

The palette of the mind

12 July 2017:

Around fifty high performing Year 10 to Year 12 students from Australia and New Zealand came to RMIT on the 11th of July to listen to CNBP Chief Investigator Prof Andy Greentree present  a talk titled “Colour: the palette of the mind.”

The talk was a part of the Youth ANZAAS visit to RMIT University. Youth ANZAAS 2017 is organised by the Australian and New Zealand Association for the Advancement of Science and the Royal Society of New Zealand. It is is an annual residential international forum for science students still at school.

An abstract of Prof Greentree’s talk follows:

Colour is a complicated phenomenon! For most of us, most of the information we receive about the world comes from light, and that light is encoded by colour. This talk will explore colour. From the physics of light, to how we detect colour information, to the psychophysics of how our brain understands those signals to make sense of the world.

RMIT School of Science Research Day

10 July 2017:

The RMIT School of Science Research Day was held on July 10th, with several members of the RMIT Node presenting CNBP research.

Postgraduate students Daniel Stavrevski, Marco Capelli and Josef Worboys participated in the 3 Minute Thesis competition: Josef Worboys was awarded the winning prize  for his work related to ‘quantum correlations’, and will go on to the University level competition.

The day’s program was concluded with a poster session including posters from CNBP’s Philipp Reineck, Emma Wilson, Nafisa Zohora, Marco Capelli and Ashleigh Heffernan.

Neurophotonics Summer School

21 June 2017:

This years Neurophotonics Summer School held in Quebec, Canada, June 11-21, was attended by three CNBP members – Vicky Staikopoulos (University of Adelaide, pictured), Antony Orth (RMIT University) and Varun Sreenivasan (UNSW).

The school focuses on teaching physics and biology and how they can merge, and runs for 10 days and includes 14 lectures from world class speakers and 10 workshops that teach the latest technology in the bio-imaging of the central nervous system.

For the last 4 days of the summer school, students are given a project to participate in for direct hands-on experience which is then presented on the last day,  with prizes awarded for the top 3 presentations.

This year, equal second prize was given to Vicky Staikopoulos for her work on Digital Holographic Microscopy in red blood cells.