Heart development researcher receives ANZSCDB Emerging Leader Award

A/Prof Kelly Smith from Dept of Anatomy & Physiology has been recognised for her groundbreaking research discoveries and involvement in the Cell & Developmental Biology community.

Joining a throng of highly regarded research leaders, Associate Professor Kelly Smith, Head of the Cardiac Genetics Laboratory in the Department of Anatomy & Physiology, has been selected as the Australia and New Zealand Society for Cell and Developmental Biology (ANZSCDB) 2022 Emerging Leader.

“The Award means so much - the people who have been awarded this prize before me are some of the most esteemed scientists recognised both nationally and internationally. To be considered in the same category as them is a privilege and honour," said A/Prof Smith.

A/Prof Smith's Research Group has used large scale forward genetics in Zebrafish to discover and characterise new genetic regulators of heart development and disease. They are working to identify the genes that are required for heart development and rhythm and to understand how these genes function. The group has recently published several exciting discoveries about heart development, including the identification of a gene necessary for cardiac rhythm. Read more in Pursuit.

In addition to research discovery, the competitive ANZSCDB prize also assesses leadership and mentorship and the national and/or international profile of the researcher. As a strong candidate for the prize, Kelly has mentored several PhD students to completion who have published well and taken up positions at various prestigious international institutes.

And being based in the heart of the Melbourne Biomedical Precinct, means A/Prof Smith collaborates with researchers from all over the world.

"In the Precinct, there is diversity of expertise combined with cutting-edge technology and renowned researchers are open and willing to collaborate. That spirit is catching and just attracts more experts - this makes it an excellent - and exciting - place to work."

About the Award

The ANZSCDB Emerging Leader Award aims to encourage and support emerging investigators who are building independent careers in Australia and New Zealand in the disciplines of cell and developmental biology.

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