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Anne Rahilly
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University of Melbourne researchers have been awarded two prestigious Program Grants and 24 scholarships worth $16.7 million in the latest round of National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) grants.

Researchers from the Sir Peter MacCallum Department of Oncology at The University of Melbourne, part of the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre have attracted funding to develop a deeper understanding of the molecular drivers of cancer. Based on fundamental discoveries about the role of cell growth, new research will incorporate cutting-edge diagnostic tools such as Positron Emission Tomography to understand how targeted therapies can be used to attack these drivers.

A range of postgraduate scholarships have also been awarded to University scholars including the Gustav Nossal Postgraduate Scholarship, sponsored by CSL Limited and a scholarship co-funded by the National Heart Foundation and NHMRC.
Other research areas that have been recognised include;

•    Studies into the genetics and genomics of breast and ovarian cancer
•    Studies into dengue fever; the pathways and how to control the disease
•    Development of understanding of inflammatory diseases
•    New therapies to treat muscle wasting in patients with cancers.

University of Melbourne Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), Professor James McCluskey said the awards recognised innovative and quality research at the University of Melbourne.

The announcements were part of a $129.7M investment in medical research with great success also enjoyed by Melbourne affiliated institutes including the Walter and Eliza Hall Medical Research institute ($16.7M), Centre for Eye Research, Bionics Institute and Ludwig Institute for cancer research.

“I congratulate our award recipients on their achievements and medical research as they undertake their important work to strive to improve the health of all Australians,” he said.

“This funding reflects the University’s commitment to addressing some of the grand challenges facing the world; our determination to foster health and well-being.”