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Ling Receives Presentation Award

Dr Patrick Ling, a Vice Chancellor Research Fellow at the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre – Queensland, was awarded the “Best Oral Free Paper Presentation at the 8th Organization of Oncology and Translation Research Conference (OOTR) in Japan.

Dr Patrick Ling, a Vice Chancellor Research Fellow at the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre – Queensland, was awarded the “Best Oral Free Paper Presentation at the 8th Organization of Oncology and Translation Research Conference (OOTR) in Japan.

The title of the presentation was “Gamma-Tocotrienol as an effective agent in targeting prostate cancer stem cell-like population”.  This is a great representation of the work Dr Ling is undertaking in the usefulness of Vitamin E in reducing tumour growth in prostate cancer.

"Prostate cancer is the most common type of cancer in developed countries," Dr Ling said.

"It is responsible for more male deaths than any other cancer, except lung cancer."

Dr Ling said existing chemotherapy and hormonal therapy treatment of prostate cancer was insufficient because it failed to kill off the prostate cancer stem cells (CSCs) which were believed to be responsible for the regrowth of tumours.

However, the research team have discovered a particular form of T3, called gamma-tocotrienol (γ-T3), can successfully kill off the prostate cancer CSCs.

"Currently there is no effective treatment for metastatic prostate cancer, because it grows back after conventional therapies in more than 70 per cent of cases," he said.

"But with γ-T3, APCRC-Q researchers have found a better way to treat prostate cancer, which has the potential to inhibit recurrence of the disease."

Dr Ling said in preclinical trials, γ-T3 completely inhibited tumour formation in more than 70 per cent of the mice implanted with prostate cancer cells and fed the vitamin E constituent in water. In the remaining cases, tumour regrowth was considerably reduced, while tumours formed in 100 per cent of the control group.

The findings were published in 2011 in the International Journal of Cancer.

Dr Ling continues his study into the molecular mechanisms that underlie prostate cancer development. He is also interested in investigating the application of fundamental research to the development of improved treatments for hormone-refractory prostate cancer.

Prestigious Department of Defense Grant Awarded to APCRC–Q’s Dr Carolina Soekmadji

Dr Carolina Soekmadji, Postdoctoral Fellow at the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre (APCRC-Q), has been awarded a highly competitive and prestigious Department of Defense FY11 Prostate Cancer Postdoctoral Training Award.

Dr Soekmadji won the US$115,000 United States Army funded grant for her project Exosome biomarkers: Defining prognosis for drug and castrate-resistant prostate cancer.

Dr Soekmadji’s research investigates the use of exosomes, tiny vesicles secreted by tumor cells into the blood or urine that contain a set of proteins and RNA resembling the cells of origin. These can be used as biomarkers to predict whether patients will respond or be resistant to certain treatment, avoiding therapy where it is unlikely to work. Success in this area of research would allow for a non-invasive characterization of a patient cancer progression or treatment response through a simple blood test.

“This study will allow for the discovery and characterization of potential novel biomarkers which will help to predict the response of prostate cancer patients, allowing patients and clinicians to make better informed decisions in regards to treatment options,” Dr Soekmadji said.


Media release

Media Release Contact:

Melissa Raassina
Communications Coordinator
Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre – Queensland
Level 1, Building 1, Princess Alexandra Hospital
199 Ipswich Rd, Brisbane QLD 4102
07 3176 1894
f: 07 3176 7440
e: melissa.raassina@qut.edu.au

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Minister for Health Tanya Plibersek visit APCRC-Q

Following the Australian Government’s announcement of $6.2m additional funding for the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre – Queensland in May, the Centre welcomed Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Minister for Health Tanya Plibersek during their visit to the Translational Research Institute (TRI) on Monday 19 August.

Prior to holding a press conference, Mr Rudd and Ms Plibersek donned white coats and toured the APCRC-Q laboratory.

In addition to meeting with researchers, the Prime Minister and Health Minister were shown some of the state-of-the-art equipment and facilities that the TRI has to offer. As part of the tour, Dr Mike Doran’s group presented the PM with a 3D-printed DNA Helix.

During his speech, the Prime Minister mentioned how impressed he was by the new research facilities at TRI and emphasised the importance of the work conducted by the various research groups within the Institute.

He also spoke of the value of the on-site pharmaceutical production facility, which enables TRI researchers to rapidly manufacture and test various drugs for efficacy – thereby facilitating and accelerating the process of translating research findings into tangible outcomes for patients.

Prof Colleen Nelson, APCRC-Q’s Executive Director, welcomed the opportunity to showcase the Centre’s research activities. “It was a pleasure to meet the Prime Minister and Health Minister during their visit to TRI” she said. “We are greatly encouraged by their recognition of the importance of our work and their support of our future efforts.”

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Minister for Health Tanya Plibersek

Prizes for three APCRC-Q Researchers

Congratulations to three award winners at the Princess Alexandra Research Symposium Research Excellence Awards

Three of our researchers won prizes at the Princess Alexandra Hospital Researchers Symposium Research Excellence Awards held on 2 August 2018.

 Farhana Matin received the Researcher of the Year (Laboratory/ Basic Science- Student Category) for her poster entitled: "A Plasma Biomarker Panel of Four MicroRNAs for the Diagnosis of Prostate Cancer".

 Jana Panchadarasan won the Best Poster (Student, Laboratory/Basic Science Category) at the PAH-Health Symposium 2018 for her poster entitled: “Functional analysis of GWAS identified 5p15 locus in prostate cancer”.

Shubhra Chandra received the Best Poster- People’s Choice Prize for her poster entitled: “Elucidating the role of Hepatocyte Nuclear Factor 1 Beta (HNF1B) transcript variants in prostate cancer.”

Congratulations to all three!

Prof Hutmacher wins ESB international Award

An announcement by the Awardee Committee of the European Society for Biomaterials (ESB) has named Professor Hutmacher the winner of the prestigious ESB international award for 2017.

Dietmar received the award in recognition of his work in which he described pre-clinical models for bone tissue engineering and the translation of tissue engineering concepts to cancer research to generate humanized mouse models.

The award was made at the ESB 2017 conference, which covered many different aspects of biomaterials research, from tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, to disease diagnosis and treatment, as well as biointerfaces and biofabrication, clustering around the main theme of the meeting “Translational activities for exploiting research on Biomaterials”.

Professor Hutmacher Honoured

Professor Hutmacher receives two prestigious honours.

On June 1, 2012  Professor Dietmar W. Hutmacher, Professor and Chair of Regenerative Medicine at the Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation (IHBI), and Investigator with the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre – Queensland (APCRC – Q) received two prestigious honours.

Professor Hutmacher was made a Fellow of the International Union of Societies for Biomaterials Science and Engineering, a Fellowship that was bestowed upon him at the opening ceremony of the World Biomaterials Conference in Chengdu, China.

At the same meeting, Professor Hutmacher also received the Australian Society of Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering Award for Research Excellence and he was invited to give a subsequent Award keynote in Adelaide at the Australasian Society for Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering (ASBTE) Conference later in the year.

Congratulations Professor Hutmacher!

Professor Pamela Russell AM Retires

Professor Pamela Russell retired at the end of July this year and will be sorely missed.

Prof Russell, AM (PhD, Dip Ed) has an international reputation for her work in urological cancers - in particular bladder and prostate cancers - and has been an invaluable part of the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre-Queensland.

In 2015, she was made a fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences, Limited and in 2003 she was awarded Membership of the Order of Australia (AM) for her research on bladder and prostate cancer.

Nationally, she helped to initiate the Australian Genitourinary Oncology Group and the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia (PCFA) (of which she is a life member). From 2007 to 2010 Prof Russell served as an inaugural Director/Secretary of the Australasian Urologi- cal and Prostate Cancer Clinical Trials Group (ANZUP). She is also an Australian editor for Urological Research and a member of Movember’s Global Scientific Committee.

Pam delivered her final address at the School Seminar on 28 July 2017.Her talk entitled “Life and Times of A Professional Beggar” was a great success.

Professor Pamela Russell made a fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences

Professor Pamela Russell AM, Head of Biomedical Imaging and Prostate Cancer Models at the APCRC-Q, has been recognised for her outstanding career by being named a fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences.

Prof Russell’s current research focus is on discovering new methods for targeted imaging of prostate specific-membrane antigen (PSMA) expressed on prostate cancers, and developing theranostic agents, which can be used for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and positron emission tomography (PET). She is also part of a team performing PSMA-PET and functional MR imaging on patients with early prostate cancer.

“We congratulate Prof Russell on this outstanding achievement,” said Executive Director of the APCRC-Q, Prof Colleen Nelson, “Hers is an impressive career, peppered with well-deserved accolades in recognition of the numerous significant contributions she has made to the field.”

“It is a great honour to receive this award,” said Prof Russell. “I am very proud and pleased to be a part of the Academy and further its aims to promote academic medicine and translational health and medical sciences in Australia, and contribute to the development of future generations of health and medical researchers.”

Current research projects in which Prof Russell is involved include research into new biomarkers in vesicles, known as exosomes, which may predict the response of castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) to chemotherapy.

Prof Russell is a co-recipient, with Prof Nelson, of an NHMRC Development grant to study diagnosis imaging and therapy of prostate cancer. In addition to funding from the NHMRC, Prof Russell is part of the Movember Global Action Plan program, and a member of the APCRC-Q’s Movember Revolutionary Team Award, led by Prof Nelson. She also serves on the Movember Global Action Plan scientific and research advisory committees.

A co-founder of the Genitourinary Oncology Group Australasia, Professor Russell also contributed to the establishment of the PCFA of which she was an inaugural director and now holds life membership. Prof Russell was honoured by the PCFA for her tireless work in prostate cancer by being named the PCFA Cancer Researcher of the Year in 2010.

In 2009, she was made a life member of the Australasian Gene Therapy Society, and received the prize for outstanding research alumnus of Sydney's Kolling Institute of Medical Research in 2006.

In 2003, her research on bladder and prostate cancer saw her awarded membership of the Order of Australia.

She was Professor of Medicine, University of New South Wales (UNSW), and director of the Oncology Research Centre at the UNSW School of Medicine at Prince of Wales Hospital from 1992 to 2008.

She has been awarded more than $37 million in research grants and has published more than 200 peer-reviewed journal articles, as well as several reviews and book chapters.

Professor Russell awarded ARC LIEF Grant to purchase new imaging platform

APCRC-Q’s Prof Pamela Russell, together with colleagues based at the Translational Research Institute and the University of Queensland’s Centre for Advanced Imaging, led a successful Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment, and Facilities (LIEF) Grant that was announced in November 2014.

The funds will be used to purchase the Vevo 2100 micro-ultrasound plus LAZR photoacoustic imaging platform, which will allow researchers to visualise and quantify, non-invasively, tissue and molecular structures; the movement and behaviour of cells; and the delivery patterns of administered imaging dyes and nanoparticles in pre-clinical models and reconstructed tissues.

“We are very excited to have been awarded this grant,” said Prof Pamela Russell, Head of Biomedical Imaging at APCRC-Q. “This will enable us to obtain anatomical, functional, physiological and molecular data simultaneously and in real-time, with resolution down to 40 micrometres,”

 “This will translate into both user efficiency and laboratory cost effectiveness, but more significantly is expected to result in greater understanding of fundamental mechanisms regulating the body's cell and tissue functions,” adds Prof Russell.

Publication Success for Drs Nataly Stylianou and Brett Hollier

Dr Nataly Stylianou and Dr Brett Hollier from the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre- Queensland (APCRC-Q), recently published a research article in Oncogene (September 7th 2018).

Dr Stylianou’s research highlighted the dynamic transcriptional nature of the epithelial-mes­enchymal plasticity in prostate cancer and how it is associated with poor clinical outcome across multiple cancers.

Since then, they have been invited to present their findings at in­ternational conferences, as well as at the Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) Journal Club webinar series next year.

You can view their publication here: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41388-018-0488-5

QUT Annual Scholarship Round NOW OPEN

Applications Close Friday 12th October, 5pm for 2013 funding.
  • A range of scholarships are available for domestic and international students.
  • Prospective and current Higher Degree Research (HDR) students (Masters by Research, PhD and Professional Doctorate) are eligible to apply.
  • Scholarships are tax exempt for full-time students.
  • Part-time scholarships may be offered to students with significant carer responsibilities or medical conditions. Part-time scholarships are taxable.





Find out more about the Annual Scholarship Round at http://www.student.qut.edu.au/research/scholarships-and-grants.


If you have any questions about applying for a scholarship, please email health.research@qut.edu.au or phone (07) 3138 8290.

QUT APR Intern Program

Ms Farhana Matin secured a place on the Australian Postgraduate Research Internship Program (APRIntern) at the Office of the Queensland Chief Scientist.

Ms Farhana Matin is a PhD student in our Centre and is the Faculty of Health’s first HDR student to secure a place on the Australian Postgraduate Research Internship Program (APRIntern) at the Office of the Queensland Chief Scientist.

Farhana will be working on a project which involves the preparation of the Queensland Government Research and Development Expenditure Report 2017-2018.

QUT is offering 2 research capacity building 5 year professorial appointments in Cancer Biology and Molecular Medicine

QUT is a highly successful, energetic and innovative university that is backing its aspirations with a significant investment in people, state-of-art infrastructure and collaborative work environments.

QUT invites applications from high profile outstanding researchers, especially those with complementary interests to our current prostate, breast, ovarian, endometrial and lung cancer strengths.

Application details for the 2 positions are available from:

Record Movember Year

Movember has reported a record year for 2010.
Record Movember Year

APCRC - Q Researchers

Donations are at an all-time high for the the month when men grow moustaches to support prostate cancer and men's depression awareness.

Australia's fundraising total is currently at $19 897 780 - close to Canada's winning takings of $20 578 682.

We are also proud to report that the APCRC - Q's online team raised $5306.

In Australia, money raised is donated to the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia and Beyond Blue. For more information visit http://au.movember.com

Representing QUT

Dr Patrick Ling was the only QUT representative for an ASMR award.

Recently, Dr Patrick Ling, Vice Chancellor Research Fellow at the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre – Queensland (APCRC – Q), represented the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) in the Queensland Health and Medical Research Awards (ASMR).

Dr Ling was QUT’s only representative and was a finalist in the Senior Researcher Award for his project entitled “Targeting prostate cancer stem cell in the prevention and treatment of prostate cancer”.

Dr Ling was announced runner-up at a Special Dinner ceremony.

Congratulations to Dr Ling on his nomination!

Ten Years of Progress in Prostate Cancer

2012 marks the 10th anniversary of the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia's Community Attitudes Survey. In this report they highlight the key results of this year's survey, based on the latest available figures from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.

2012 Community Attitudes Survey

Areas highlighted include community awareness of prostate cancer as a top health issue; attitudes and behaviour towards testing; and attitudes and towards available support services.

Prostate Cancer is an important public health issue, with the latest figures from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare suggesting that with the rising Australian population, increasing life expectancy and the expectation of continuing increases in prostate cancer incidence, by 2020 the number of prostate cancers diagnosed will be somewhere between 25,000 and 31,000.

Given the impact the disease has and will continue to have on the community, the annual Community Attitudes Survey is a very important piece of research for PCFA as it helps to underpin their understanding of community attitudes towards prostate cancer, gauge how they are changing over time and also develop and improve the services and support that they offer to men and their families.

The report shows that men are much more aware of their health today compared to ten years’ ago.  Research shows a 12% increase in the number of men who feel informed about prostate cancer over the last decade. And more than 50% of men see prostate cancer as the most important health issue they face

It is noted that more men are now getting themselves tested with 9 out of 10 men tested by the time they reach their late 60s and more than 70% of men say they expect to have a test sometime in the future.  Interestingly, GPs are the main influencers for men to be tested with two thirds of men saying their doctor suggested or conducted a test. Two-thirds of men feel informed about the test, but worryingly almost 40% say the advice they receive about the test is confusing.

For some time now it has been thought that men unlike women are bad at seeking help.  PCFA's survey found that one quarter of men sought help on being diagnosed and found information and support services very valuable. However, they also found that men are often unaware of what is available and need their doctors and other health professionals to be more proactive in guiding them to support services.

These are just some of the highlights from the 2012 Survey.  To read the full version of the report, please visit the PCFA website.

Research Excellence Awards at PA Health Symposium

Arutha Kulasinghe, Jyotsna Batra, and Janaththani Panchadsaram received Research Excellence Awards at the recent Princess Alexandra Hospital Health Symposium.

Previously known as the Young Investigator Awards, the Research Excellence Awards are designed to promote all forms of health research on campus and are open to both full-time researchers and health professionals engaged in research in addition to their clinical practice.

Arutha Kulasinghe won Researcher of the Year (oral presentation) category. Jyotsna Batra was awarded the People's Choice Researcher of the Year (oral presentation) and Janaththani Panchadasaram won the People's Choice Poster Laboratory/Basic Science Award.

The awards were presented as part of the 57th PAH Health Symposium a four-day event held from Tuesday 1 to Friday 4 August 2017 with the theme, Personalised medicine—the future of healthcare.


The Research Excellence Awards showcased a multidisciplinary program of oral and poster presentations—awarding the best medical, surgical, nursing, allied health, and laboratory/basic science research.

Revolutionary e-health App will support vulnerable cancer patients

A new free i-phone App will be released tomorrow on the Apple App Store, specifically designed to assist men with advanced prostate cancer.

The App is the first of its kind and is the result of a collaborative e-health research project coordinated by Australian Prostate Cancer Research and led by Urologist Dr Jim Duthie with support from leading App production company Appster.

There are approximately 25,000 men in Australia undergoing hormone therapy due to their advanced prostate cancer. The treatment is difficult for patients and requires a number of blood tests and health checks at different times due to the challenging side-effects of the drugs and the need to manage these carefully. The App is simply called “adt” – which stands for androgen deprivation therapy.

“As you can imagine, this is a terribly hard process for patients and their families, so anything that we can do to make information and support more accessible and help them manage will be a great outcome.  The App provides automated reminders through push notifications direct to the phone, thereby providing a treatment management system patients can rely on. But more than anything, we aim to ease the tremendous burden that patients are already facing” said App creator Dr Duthie.

The patient, or their clinician, starts the App when treatment commences and it then automatically alerts the patient through their iPhone as to when their next test is required. It also tells them about the test and provides useful supporting information for each stage of the treatment.

“Each year around 3,000 men die of prostate cancer and the vast majority have drug therapy as part of their treatment. To deliver such a clinically relevant e-health innovation through collaborative research really shows that we can achieve great things when we work together. E-health is a major area of research for us to help deliver improved clinical support, in particular for regional and remote communities who face inequity of access” said James Garland, CEO of Australian Prostate Cancer Research.

The tool is easy to use, free of charge and can be accessed world-wide through the Apple App Store by searching for “adt” or visit www.hormonetherapyapp.org.au

Rodeo Raises Funds

Movember has struck a chord around the world with the Queensland Working Cow Horse Club’s (QWCHC) 22nd November Event proving no exception.

Held at the Caboolture Showground indoor arena,  the event was well-attended and ran over the entire weekend, with a two-handed snaffle bit cutting competition followed by a wild card team penning event.

The wild card team penning event donated all nominations to the APCRC-Q, raising a total of $1,600 towards the cause.

QWCHC Rodeo 4

Spectator and competitor donations also added to this amount, as did a raffle held throughout the weekend.

Novelty fines of $5 were also dealt out over the weekend for infringements such as losing a hat in the arena whilst riding.

These fines also added to the fundraising.

QWCHC President John Brannigan said it was a massive weekend of competition and is pleased to have raised this significant donation.

Congratulations and much appreciation to John and the team at QWCHC for their well-needed donation to Prostate Cancer Research.

QWCHC Rodeo 3

photography by Vicki Wood and sourced from Sunshine Coast Daily

Sizzling Support for PCFA’s Big Aussie Barbie

APCRC-Q continued its support for the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia’s Big Aussie Barbie campaign with three fundraising events in September.

Now in its fifth year, the campaign aims to raise over $1 million and promote community awareness of prostate cancer.

APCRC-Q researchers donned aprons and tongs to host a barbeque at QUT’s Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation on Friday 26 September. As the beneficiary of funding from PCFA, the Centre is pleased to contribute to this campaign.  With generous support from local businesses, APCRC-Q donated over $900. 

PCFA logo

The Australian Innovation Challenge 2012

Could your bright idea be a game changer?

From The Australian:

If so, we can help you put it into play, through the $70,000 The Australian Innovation Challenge awards. Brought to you by The Australian in association with Shell and supported by the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and
Tertiary Education, these awards can help give your idea clout in the economy, the environment or the community.

The inaugural awards last year uncovered and championed inspired innovations created in universities, top laboratories and backyard sheds across Australia. Some entrants are already reaping the rewards of the Challenge – prestige and publicity as well as much-needed prize money.

Professor Mark Kendall, of the University of Queensland, and his team, won the overall professional categories prize for Nanopatch – a patch to replace needles and syringes in vaccination. Inventor Jeremy Woodhill won the Backyard Innovation prize for his energy-saving smart powerpoint.

Whether you're a professional scientist or engineer, or an inventor working in your shed, anyone can enter - individuals or teams.





Professional Categories
The winners in each professional category will receive a $5,000 prize and vie for a further $25,000 for the overall prize. The categories are:

  • Minerals and energy
  • Health
  • Environment, agriculture and food
  • ICT
  • Community services
  • Education
  • Manufacturing and hi-tech design

Backyard Innovation
Covering ideas ranging from clever domestic appliances to more efficient motors, this category is open to the general public. The winner will take out a $10,000 cash prize.


Enter Now

Prostate Cancer Researchers receive School of Biomedical Sciences Support

APCRC-Q researchers were awarded funding from the 2018 School of Biomedical Sciences Support Schemes

Congratulations to the following recipients of the 2018 School of Biomedical Sciences Industry Collaboration Preparedness Pilot Research Support Scheme.

A/Prof Sally Stephenson and Dr Mohanan Maharaj received $10,000 for their project entitled: ‘SUMOylated pro­teins in cancer’.

Prof Lisa Chopin, Dr Inge Seim, Dr Jennifer Gunter, Dr Penny Jeffery, and Dr Michelle Maugham were award­ed $10,000 for their project entitled: ‘Investigating the mechanism and effect of new generation GHSR antagonists in prostate cancer’.

Congratulations to the following recipients of the 2018 School of Biomedical Sciences Research Infrastructure Support Scheme

A group of researchers led by A/Prof Jyotsna Batra, Dr Brett Hollier, DProf Judith Clements, and A/Prof Pamela Pollock, along with researchers from APCRC-Q including Dr Martin Sadowski and Dr Jennifer Gunter, and individual researchers including Dr Sri Srinivasan, Dr Marianna Volpert, Dr Katrina Sweeny and Dr Nataly Stylianou received $3,100 to purchase a Multiquip Incubator (E2 Automatic Turning Incubator).

Translational Research Institute To Appoint New Chief Executive Officer

TRI is now progressing the appointment of a CEO and Director of Research.

Prof Ian Frazer will conclude his three year tenure as CEO and Director of Research of Translational Research Institute (TRI) on 30 June 2014. He will continue to support the development of the TRI as an Ambassador for its new fundraising Board. 

TRI is now progressing the appointment of a CEO and Director of Research.  Download the CEO Prospectus from the TRI website.  Initial enquiries should be directed in confidence to: Dr Rachel Lucas, RLC Search on +61 (0)402 891 029 or rachel@rlcsearch.com


TRI building

Photos courtesy of Translational Research Institute

TRI hosts the Brisbane Diamantina Health Partners, Translational Research Institute, Circulating Tumour Cell Symposium

The Brisbane Diamantina Health Partners (BDHP), Translational Research Institute (TRI), Circulating Tumour Cell (CTC) Symposium was recently held at the Translational Institute on the Princess Alexandra Hospital Campus.

Attended by some 130 delegates, the one day symposium addressed a wide spectrum of topics in the fields of circulating tumour cells (CTC) and liquid biopsy.

 More than 73% of the registrants represented BDHP partners at QUT, UQ and Griffith Universities, affiliated research institutes, and Qld Health, while the rest came from Victoria, NSW, WA and SA.  Representatives from seven companies and industry were also in attendance, together with representatives from consumer advocacy groups.

 Co-Conveners, Prof Colleen Nelson, Executive Director of the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre-Queensland, and Prof Rik Thompson, Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation Theme Leader for Chronic Disease and Ageing, agreed that the meeting was a resounding success.

 “The symposium provided up to date coverage of many aspects of CTC research and implementation across the four major themes: Capture / Isolation; Culture / Propagation; Functional & Molecular Characterisation; ctDNA / CTC / DTC comparisons,” said Prof Nelson.

 Each of the thematic sessions was presented in a workshop style, featuring short focused presentations from invited speakers followed by open comments from the floor with discussion from the Speaker Panel. Each of these themes was also explored in more detail with separate break-out sessions for one hour after lunch.

Prof Thompson commended the various speakers and presenters for their valued contributions: “Our international guest, Prof Jean Paul Thiery, Head of the Department of Biochemistry of the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine and member of the Cancer Science Institute, National University of Singapore, delivered an outstanding presentation on epithelial mesenchymal transition, lively discussion and broad knowledge base and experience in translational science,”

 “The National speakers, Dr Majid Ibrahim Warkiani, Prof Matt Trau, Dr Ian Vela, A/Prof Olga Martin, A/Prof Kevin Spring, A/Prof Chamindie Punyadeera, Prof Erik Thompson, A/Prof Alex Dobrovic, Dr Albert Mellick, and Dr Joachim Fluher, provided terrific insight into the very active research ongoing in Australia in the CTC field.”

“Technical presentations on the latest technologies were made by our session sponsors: Dr Anthony Davis kindly presented on behalf of ALS CellCelector, Dr Evgeny Glazov for BioRad, Dr Joachim Fluher (Genostics) on behalf of Prof. Katharina Pachmann from Maintrac.”

“A meeting highlight was the discussion session at the end of the day,” added Prof Thompson.” This was chaired by Prof Colleen Nelson, who involved all the speakers from the day in a very insightful and critical discussion on the translation of CTCs into clinical utility. This discussion went for almost an hour with strong contributions both from the floor and audience.”

Session sponsors included Maintrac – Genostics, Illumina, ALS and StemCell Technologies, with meeting sponsorship from Agena Bioscience, Bio-Rad, Clearbridge Biomedics, GeneWorks, and Qiagen. The EMPathy Breast Cancer Network / National Breast Cancer Foundation, Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre – Queensland, and Translational Research Institute also provided support for the meeting.

 “We very gratefully acknowledge all our sponsors and supporters,” said Prof Nelson. “We are especially appreciative of the generous sponsorship by a number of CTC-related equipment and diagnostics companies, which allowed us to simplify and open up the meeting with free registration.”

 “We would also like to thank the local organising committee: Tony Blick, Anthony Davies, Jennifer Gunter, Arutha Kulasinghe, Liliana Endo-Munoz, Ken O’Byrne, Chamindie Punyadeera, Euan Walpole, Elizabeth Williams, for their valuable contributions to the success of the day,” said Prof Thompson.

Princess Alexandra Research Foundation awards for APCRC-Q Researchers

Dr Brett Hollier and A/Prof Elizabeth Williams are lead investigators on two successful research grants from the Princess Alexandra Research Foundation.

Dr Hollier received a Translational Research Innovation Award for his project entitled: The translation of a novel targeted agent in the treatment of neuroendocrine prostate cancer. The grant is valued at $100,000 for one year.

“This project focusses on testing a new targeted agent to treat advanced forms of prostate cancer, which are resistant to current androgen-targeted therapies,” said Dr Hollier, “We greatly appreciate the financial support from the PA Research Foundation that will make this important research possible.”

A/Prof Elizabeth Williams and her transdisciplinary team of clinicians and researchers (Dr Ian Vela, DProf Dietmar Hutmacher, Dr Ben Shepherd, Prof Matt Brown, Dr Nathalie Bock, and Dr Saeid Alinezhad) also received a Translational Research Innovation Award of $100,000 for one year for their project entitled: “A multifaceted precision approach to high risk prostate cancer”.

“We are delighted to receive this award, which will fund our project to assess feasibility and efficacy of a translational “precision” approach to men with high risk prostate cancer in order to direct future therapeutic decisions,” said A/Prof Elizabeth Williams.

“By examining tissue from prostate cancer tumours of men with high risk disease we hope to identify effective therapy strategies to guide physicians in their choice of treatment to avoid those treatment regimens to which the cancer shows intrinsic resistance and to help patients avoid therapies which will inevitably not yield results.”

United States Department of Defence Funding Award for APCRC-Q Research team

APCRC-Q researchers awarded a US Department of Defense Idea Development Award.

APCRC-Q researchers Dr Jyotsna Batra, Dr Ian Vela, D/Prof Judith Clements, and Prof Colleen Nelson along with A/Prof Rothnagel and Dr Popat (University of Queensland) and Prof George Yousef (Canada) and Prof Rosalind Eeles (London) were awarded a United States Department of Defence Idea Development Award for their project entitled: ‘The long and short of a GWAS identified long non-coding RNA’.

US Department of Defense Pre-Announcement for Prostate Cancer Research Program

The US Department of Defense has announced $80 million in funding for the DoD Prostate Cancer Research Program to support innovative, high-impact prostate cancer research.

The focus areas for the program are: 1) Biomarker Development; 2) Genetics; 3) Imaging; 4) Mechanisms of Resistance; 5) Survivorship and Palliative Care; 6) Therapy; and 7) Tumor and Microenvironment Biology. 

It is anticipated that Program Announcements and General Application Instructions for the 13 awards will be posted on the grants.gov website in May and June 2013.

Further information is available at: http://cdmrp.army.mil/pubs/press/2013/13pcrppreann.shtml  

Swan says "get tested"

The Courier Mail's coverage of the Deputy PM's visit to the Princess Alexandra Hospital and prostate cancer clinic.

Wayne Swan urges men to get prostate check

FEDERAL Treasurer Wayne Swan has urged ageing men to get over any hang-ups about their sex lives and get checked for prostate cancer as soon as possible.

Mr Swan, who was treated for prostate cancer a decade ago, said anyone over 50 was at risk of having prostate cancer and the odds increased if there was a history of the disease in the family.

He said there were myths circulating about the reliability of Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) tests that needed to be dispelled.

"We need to reassure men they should be tested for prostate cancer," Mr Swan told reporters at Brisbane's Princess Alexandra Hospital today.

"I was lucky that I had a very switched-on GP.

"The challenge with prostate cancer is if it's diagnosed early it doesn't escape the prostate.

"When it comes to prostate cancer there is a fear about their sex lives, no doubt about that.

"But being alive is the most important thing."

Mr Swan opened up about his cancer scare to sufferer Terry Malone, who shares a birthday with the treasurer and will have an operation early in 2012.

The federal budget had included funds to research a cure for prostate cancer, Mr Swan said.

Prostate Cancer Foundation chief Dr Anthony Lowe said slightly more men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year than women with breast cancer.

He said that alone should highlight to men the importance of having a PSA test.

Wayne Swan Visits the PA Hospital

*story republished with permission of The Courier-Mail.

Winners of the 2018 Carla Patterson Award

Dr Claire Levrier and co-authors won the 2018 Carla Patterson Award for their publication in Molecular Cancer Therapeutics

Dr Claire Levrier and co-authors won the 2018 Carla Patterson Award in the category of 'Overall IHBI Award' with their publication entitled: 6α-Acetoxyanopterine: A Novel Structure Class of Mitotic Inhibitor Disrupting Microtubule Dynamics in Prostate. APCRC-Q affiliated co-authors include: Drs Anja Rockstroh, Melanie Lehman, Martin Sadowski and Prof Colleen Nelson.

You can view their winning publication at https://eprints.qut.edu.au/102691/.

The full publication reference is: Levrier C, Sadowski MC, Rockstroh A, Gabrielli B, Kavallaris M, Lehman M, Davis RA, Nelson CC. 6α-Acetoxyanopterine: A Novel Structure Class of Mitotic Inhibitor Disrupting Microtubule Dynamics in Prostate Cancer Cells. Mol Cancer Ther. 2017 Jan;16(1):3-15. doi: 10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-16-0325.

Congratulations to all concerned.

Women in Technology Award for Prof Colleen Nelson

Prof Colleen Nelson received A WIT Award at the QLD Women In Technology Awards Gala Dinner in recognition of her achievements in Prostate Cancer Research.

Prof Colleen Nelson received the Life Sciences Outstanding Award, while A/Prof Jyotsna Batra was a finalist for the Life Sciences Rising Star Award, and PhD Candidate, Srilakshmi Srinivasan was a finalist for the Life Sciences Young Achiever Award.

This year marked the 20th Anniversary of the Women in Technology (WiT) Awards, which was founded by 10 women in 1997 and has grown to become one of the leading industry associations for women in Australia. WiT represents the interests of all women in the fields of Information Technology and Life Sciences Technology and provides a safe networking and learning environment for ladies at all stages of their careers.