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Twenty of Australia’s finest health and medical researchers have been honoured at the National Health and Medical Research Council’s (NHMRC) annual Research Excellence Awards in Canberra. The prestigious awards recognise recent outstanding performance in the health and medical research field. Among those honoured are Dr Lisa Whop receiving the Rising Star Award and Associate Professor James Bourne receiving the Marshall and Warren Award.

The Winter 2018 of the ARMI newsletter, Regenerate, is now available for download in the 'Resources' section. Here are just some of the highlights for ARMI in the first quarter of 2018:

  • Claude Bernard – Looking back on an inspirational career in immunology
  • From Madrid to New York and now Melbourne: Read about the life and research of Alberto Roselló-Díez, ARMI's newest group leader.
  • How the Merson Group is ‘Kissing Goodbye’ to MS
  • Sonya Walker: Taking Ideas to the Global Community
  • Unlocking the Secrets of Skeletal Muscle Cells
  • ARMI spends a night at St Heliers Gallery
  • Congratulations to Professor Jose Polo
  • Welcome Social Media Ambassadors

Discover what other highlights have emerged and read the diverse range articles in the latest edition of Regenerate.

It was a fight for every square-inch at St Heliers Gallery at the Abbotsford Convent on the Friday night of the 25th of May. In celebration of the works created during the successful Artists in Residence program, ARMI headed to the gallery to see a showcase of regenerative medicine-inspired art. The exhibition, titled Regeneration: An exhibition, was overflowing with scientists, artists and art enthusiasts. Accompanied by a lively band, cheese and wine, the night was a sure-fire success to the delight of ARMI and its curators, Lucy Hersey and Celia Vandestadt.

Moving from Colombia eight years ago to study a Bachelor of Science at the University of Melbourne, Laura Galvis Vargas is a seasoned Melbournite. As a member of the Marcelle Group, Laura is undertaking her PhD in muscle regeneration research, and she is already renowned amongst ARMI for her passion for science and collaboration (facilitated by the ABC symposium).

As a UROP (Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program) student, Laura commenced her research career at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute in the field of lung epigenetics. Under the supervision of Dr. Marie-Liesse Asselin-Labat, she completed her honours and worked as a research assistant, developing her skills as a scientist.

Over 25,000 Australians suffer from Multiple Sclerosis (MS), and with 10 new diagnoses each week and an ageing population, that number is on the rise. Unfortunately, given the relatively few sufferers in comparison to our total population, it’s no surprise that only 4 out of 10 Australians rank MS as a community health priority.

But this perception can be changed, and that’s what makes MS Research Australia’s ‘Kiss Goodbye to MS’ campaign in May so valuable. One proud contributor is ARMI’s own Merson Group, who research potential methods to mitigate the debilitating symptoms of MS. By taking part in the campaign’s launch day event ‘Red Lab Coat Day(on May 1st), they’re aiming to raise funds for further research in the prevention, treatment and, ideally, a cure for MS.

At ARMI, our research capabilities are our greatest strength- bringing together the best minds to tackle some the most difficult issues in regenerative medicine. But behind the lab bench, a different sort of research takes place; one that empowers our scientists and generates opportunities through advocacy and promotion. The Institute’s Leadership Advisory Board is one of them (ARMILAB) ‑ and one of its newest members members, Sonya Walker, is excited to take part and help researchers.

“I’ve had a wonderful career in science,” beams Claude, “I wish a lot of people the same pleasure of going to work every day like I have!” Claude always knew that he would have a career in science, but with a medical focus, “I knew early I didn’t want to do medicine as I knew I was more interested in discovery.”  Claude was born and bred in Paris, and it was where Claude’s love for science began – he completed his undergraduate degree there.  As Claude loved to ski, he decided to relocate to Montreal, Canada to study and complete his French National Service. He really thought he was being clever and laughs telling the story, “I didn’t count on it being -40°C making it difficult to be outside, let alone ski!” Nevertheless, Claude endured the cold Arctic winters of Montreal, finished his national service and completed his masters and PhD there.