Metcalf Prize Alumni
A central focus for the National Stem Cell Foundation of Australia is promoting great Australian science, as well as supporting medical research. To identify these bright stars of Australian stem cell science, we bring together a group of recognised experts in stem cell science as the Metcalf Prize Judging Panel.
Our Metcalf Prize winners are making ground-breaking scientific breakthroughs in stem cell science. Read more on each of the winners below.
Mark Dawson, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre
Building a blood cancer treatment from the ground up Mark Dawson
has helped build a new drug to fight an aggressive form of blood cancer. He discovered the basic science of gene expression in acute myeloid leukaemia (AML), helped develop a drug to block that action, and is leading an international clinical trial to test it. Read more
Mark's research profile
from Peter MacCallum Cencer Centre
Jessica Mar, Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (AIBN), University of Queensland
How we and our stem cells get old Jessica Mar
is analysing stem cells to discover the changes that influence ageing.
We all started life as a stem cell. Throughout our lives, stem cells repair and replace our tissues, but as we age they stop working as well. Understanding how this decline occurs is fundamental to understanding—and influencing—how we age. Jessica is studying ageing stem cell models with collaborators around Australia to answer these questions. Read more
Jessica's research profile
from University of Queensland
Tracy Heng, Monash University
Making cancer treatment less aggressive Tracy Heng
wants to make cancer treatment gentler and more effective for elderly patients with blood cancer and other blood disorders. “Bone marrow transplants have transformed survival rates for blood cancers. They replace a diseased blood system with healthy blood-forming cells, but first, doctors have to wipe out a patient’s immune system, which takes a big toll on elderly patients. My goal is to change that,” says Tracy. Read more.
Tracy's research profile
from Monash University
James Chong, Westmead Institute for Medical Research and The University of Sydney
Stem cells healing broken hearts James Chong
has two starters in the race to develop stem cell therapies for heart failure as viable alternatives to heart transplants. His research is exploring both the potential for transplanted stem cells to regenerate new heart tissue and how to repair a patient’s heart by rejuvenating their own heart stem cells. Read more
James' research profile
from University of Sydney
Ryan Lister, Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research
Teaching stem cells to forget their past Ryan Lister
has discovered how adult stem cells retain a memory of what they once were. He believes he can make them forget their past lives, as for example skin cells, so their history doesn’t limit their new potential to become brain, heart, liver, blood and other cells. Read more
Ryan's research profile
from Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research
Christine Wells, University of Queensland
Stem cell encyclopaedia fast tracks discoveries
An online encyclopaedia created by Christine Wells
has led to the discovery of a new kind of stem cell. And that’s just the beginning. Christine’s small Brisbane team has created a resource that the global stem cell research community is using to rapidly share knowledge and fast track stem cell discoveries. Read more
Christine Well's profile
from University of Melbourne
Kaylene Young, University of Tasmania
Closer to repairing the brain with it's own stem cells Kaylene Young
is working to find ways to persuade 'lazy' stem cells in our brain to repair brain injuries and even treat diseases such as multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer’s. Read more.
Kaylene's research profile
from University of Tasmania
Jose Polo, Monash University
New stem cells via identity theft and reprogramming Jose Polo
is unravelling the details of how stem cells can be produced from adult cells through a mix of identity theft and reprogramming. It is work that needs to be done before such stem cells can be used safely in medicine. Read more.
Jose Polo's research profile
from Monash University