Physiology students win awards in the Australian Society for Medical Research student symposium

PhD student Francesca Alves and Masters student John Nguyen from the Department of Physiology have both won first prize awards at the 10th annual Australian Society for Medical Research (ASMR) Victorian student symposium.

Photo of John and Francesca at the ASMR awards with their certificates.

Francesca and John took part in oral and poster presentations for the competition on 31 May at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, including the “three minute thesis” where students had to explain their research in three minutes to a general audience using a single Powerpoint slide.

Francesca won the PhD category for second year students based off a 10-minute talk. Her research involves investigating the contribution of iron to the pathology in muscular dystrophy and whether treating iron overload using a chelator can improve the condition. Francesca is supervised by Dr RenĂ© Koopman, Professor Gordon Lynch, Professor Ashley Bush (Florey) and Associate Professor Scott Ayton (Florey).

John won the people’s choice award for the three-minute thesis presentation. John is investigating how the cellular micro-environment supports muscle stem cells in their quest to regenerate damaged muscle fibres. This is important for the development and optimisation of muscle stem cell therapies for various muscle diseases and conditions, surgery and sports medicine. John is supervised by Dr James Ryall and Professor Gordon Lynch.

The ASMR student symposium offers medical and health research students the chance to present their work to an audience of their peers, network and listen to some of Victoria’s top medical researchers. Presentations were judged by a panel of senior academics and post-doctorates.

Congratulations Francesca and John!