27 July 2012
Two research teams from the School of Biomedical Sciences were named finalists for the 2012 Australian Museum Eureka Prizes. And they are vying for the same award!
Professor Trevor Lithgow, Joel Selkrig, Dr Matthew Belousoff, Dr Chaille Webb, Dr Andrew Perry and Dr Hsin-Hui Shen, from the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; and Associate Professor Dena Lyras, Professor Julian Rood, Dr Glen Carter, Dr Jennifer O'Connor, Dr Milena Awad, Anjana Chakravorty and Pauline Howarth, from the Department of Microbiology, were selected as finalists for the Eureka Prize for Infectious Diseases Research, which is sponsored by Australian Infectious Diseases Research Centre at the University of Queensland.
Professor Lithgow and his team have discovered the Translocation and Assembly Module (TAM) in bacteria, which diverse pathogens use to cause disease. This discovery could aid in the design of a new class of antibiotics that also reduce the incidence of antibiotic resistance, a growing problem.
Associate Professor Lyras and her team have unravelled the factors that are important for Clostridium difficile infection to occur and changed our understanding of how this pathogen causes disease. C difficile is a hospital-acquired superbug that causes devastating epidemics worldwide.
Monash University was also shortlisted in two other categories:
Google Australia Eureka Prize for Innovation in Computer Science: Associate Professor Jon McCormack, Aidan Lane and Dr Alan Dorin, from the Monash Faculty of Information Technology, and Peter McIlwain, from Sonic Design, for their Nodal software, which uses a unique method to visually represent and perform music.
ANSTO Eureka Prize for Innovative Use of Technology: Associate Professor Wei Shen and Professor Gil Garnier, from the Monash Faculty of Engineering, for their low-cost paper device for blood typing tests.
Winners of the Australian Museum Eureka Prizes will be announced at a gala event in Sydney on 28 August.
For more information: http://eureka.australianmuseum.net.au/
Professor Trevor Lithgow (right) with Joel Selkrig.
Associate Professor Dena Lyras