Awards recognise UQ's rising stars of research
|Dr Lachlan Coin and Dr Kate Schroder at the 2013 UQ Research Excellence Awards|
18 September 2013
Two IMB researchers were part of a group celebrated at a University of Queensland awards ceremony last night.
The 2013 UQ Foundation Research Excellence Awards are a highlight of UQ's annual Research Week.
The awards – now in their 15th year – aim to foster excellent early-career researchers and support their career advancement.
Dr Kate Schroder received $80,000 for her project, "Pinpointing the initiation of immune response".
She is researching the “inflammasome”, which activates the immune system during infection.
“If we know the pathways that allow our bodies to fight infectious disease, we may be able to develop drugs to boost our natural defences,” Dr Schroder said.
Dr Lachlan Coin received $90,000 for his project, "Identification of structural variation associated with auto-immune disorders".
Dr Coin is seeking to better understand the genetic architecture of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus and Ankylosing Spondylitis so that better therapeutics can be developed.
UQ President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Høj said it was a priority for UQ to appropriately reward and mentor early and mid-career researchers.
“This may well be one reason why UQ performs so well on local and national rankings tables,” Professor Høj said.
“UQ was the first Australian university to introduce an awards program of this type, in 1999, when these awards began.”
UQ Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Max Lu congratulated the award winners and said all showed exceptional promise in becoming leaders in discovery.
"These awards have a proven track record in identifying researchers who go on to great success,” Professor Lu said.
"Since the inception of these awards, UQ has provided more than $9.17 million to 126 researchers.
“Some of these have gone on to attract tens of millions of dollars to Queensland. They have helped shape the economy as well as their own areas of research.”
Professor Lu said about half of all the Foundation Research Excellence Awards winners had later secured sought-after fellowships from the Australian Research Council, the National Health and Medical Research Council, the Queensland government – or combinations of these.
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