Research Excellence Awards
Awardees for 2017
- Dr Rishi Kotecha, Early Career Researcher of the Year
- Prof Mariapia Degli-Esposti, Cancer Researcher of the Year
- Prof Michael Millward, Cancer Research Career Achievement Award
Early Career Researcher of the Year
Recipient’s Career Dr Kotecha’s research area is paediatric haematology and oncology. His focus is on infant acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, which has poor survival rates. The strength of his scientific credentials is evidenced by several notable distinctions including awarding of the Raine Foundation Clinical Research Fellowship (2016-2019) and recent publications which have advanced the understanding of paediatric haematology/oncology. Amongst other accomplishments he is a Chief Investigator for the international INTERFANT-06 clinical therapeutic trial and a member of the national consortium exploring the epidemiology and risk factors for invasive fungal infections in immunocompromised children.
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Cancer Researcher of the Year
Professor Degli-Esposti is an internationally-recognized immunologist with an extensive nationally funded research program. This nomination relates to her work focusing on understanding the basis of impaired antiviral immunity following bone-marrow-transplantation for the treatment of hematological malignancies. From this research Professor Degli-Esposti has developed pioneering pre-clinical models, which with effective collaborations with clinical leaders across the globe will ensure findings are rapidly translated into clinical settings.
Cancer Research Career Achievement Award
Professor Millward is an international expert on the management of thoracic malignancies and melanoma. He has a strong track record in delivering clinical trial outcomes, particularly with novel therapeutics and phase I/II studies. His career goals have been to increase cancer treatment capability in WA and to be able to offer as many patients as possible the opportunity to participate in clinical trials. He has initiated and carried out early phase clinical trials evaluating novel agents and novel combinations, where his site has been first-in-world to treatment. His leadership has promoted the inclusion of many Australian centres in international Phase II/III studies.
What are the Research Excellence Awards?
This award recognises an emerging cancer researcher who has made a significant advance in cancer research within the last 18 - 24 months.
The achievement is judged in terms of impact of one or more peer-reviewed publications that advance our understanding of cancer biology, causes (aetiology), policy, prevention, early detection, diagnosis, management or treatment, health services, improvement of quality of life for cancer patients or palliative care.
An ‘early career' cancer researcher is someone who has less than seven years of continuous experience in cancer research and who has no more than five years postdoctoral experience.
This award recognises an individual who has made the most outstanding contribution to cancer research over the past 3 years.
The achievement may be a single and specific achievement - such as leading a ground-breaking or cutting edge piece of cancer research of international importance - or establishing a major initiative that will significantly advance a specific area of cancer research in Western Australia.
The contribution may relate to any topic of cancer research including biology, causes (aetiology), policy, prevention, early detection, diagnosis, management or treatment, health services, improvement of quality of life for cancer patients or palliative care.
This award recognises a senior cancer researcher who has a history of significant achievement in cancer research and a strong record of leadership in administration, advocacy and promotion of cancer research. They will have mentored junior researchers and inspired the next generation to take up careers in cancer research.