Around the universities and research institutes

Cate Swannell
Med J Aust || doi: 10.5694/mja17.0304C3
Published online: 3 April 2017

Professor Chris Stapelberg has been named as the Joint Chair in Mental Health for Bond University and Gold Coast University Hospital. Professor Stapelberg is a senior staff specialist in psychiatry, working at the Gold Coast University Hospital as a consultation liaison psychiatrist. He is the Mental Health and Specialist Services Director of Research, chair of the Gold Coast Hospital Mental Health and Specialist Services Research Committee and until recently was deputy chair of the Gold Coast Hospital and Health Service Research Council. Professor Stapelberg was previously the Clinical Lead in Mental Health at the Griffith University School of Medicine, where he was involved with teaching, curriculum development, and examinations and received a number of teaching awards. For the past 8 years he has been researching major depression and has also undertaken work mapping the physiological network of relationships in depression and biomarkers in the context of major depression, notably heart rate variability. Professor Stapelberg completed a PhD on the impact of depression on heart rate variability in people with, and without, coronary heart disease. He is now the principal investigator, or co-investigator, on a number of research projects in this area. Since 2013 he has been an Invited Expert on depression for the Global Burden Of Disease Project with the World Health Organization.

Dr Ruth McNair, a GP and Honorary Associate Professor at the University of Melbourne’s Department of General Practice, has been inducted onto the Victorian Honour Roll of Women. Dr McNair has made a lasting contribution to the general health and quality of care for countless gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) individuals, families, partners and allies in the local community. She has also worked with various marginalised populations including Aboriginal communities and women prisoners. In 2009, she helped to establish Northside Clinic in North Fitzroy which has a focus on addressing the general health needs of Melbourne’s LGBTI community. Dr McNair is currently the Co-chair of the Victorian LGBTI Health and Human Services Working Group and a member of the LGBTI Taskforce. She is also Chairperson of the Gay and Lesbian Foundation of Australia, Founding Member and previous convener of the Australian Lesbian Medical Association and Founding Member of Rainbow Families.

Dr Marguerite Evans-Galea, from the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute and the University of Melbourne, has been inducted onto the Victorian Honour Roll of Women. Over the past 15 years, Dr Evans-Galea has led international collaborations to better understand disease mechanism and developed novel therapies and biomarkers for repeat-associated neurodegenerative diseases. The contributions she has made in gene and cell therapy and in Friedreich ataxia, a condition affecting children that results in progressive deterioration in motor function, have been recognised with national and international awards. Through the Australasian Gene and Cell Therapy Society, she has also fostered greater ties between leading investigators in gene therapy and stem cell research, many of which are based in Victoria. Dr Evans-Galea was recently appointed as the inaugural Executive Director of the Industry Mentoring Network in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine with the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering.

Dr Christine Tippett, AM, founder and director of Maternal-Fetal Medicine at the Monash Medical Centre and senior lecturer in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Monash University, has been inducted onto the Victorian Honour Roll of Women. Specialising in high risk obstetrics and gynaecology, for 45 years Dr Tippett has made an “outstanding contribution to medicine in Victoria, saving the lives of women and newborns and improving the quality of care Australian women receive during pregnancy”. She has delivered more than 10 000 babies throughout her career and has been instrumental in advocating for change in the field of obstetrics and gynaecology, helping to create a safer environment for both mothers and babies. She won the RANZCOG Gold Medal in 1984 and became the College’s first female president in 2006.

Dr Ray Moynihan, from Bond University, has won a 4-year fellowship from the NHMRC to investigate the problem of overdiagnosis – which happens when someone is diagnosed with a disease that won’t actually harm them. A Senior Research Fellow at Bond’s Centre for Research in Evidence-Based practice, who obtained his PhD in 2015, Dr Moynihan’s most recent research examined the example of osteoporosis – where the formal definition automatically labels many healthy older women who will never experience a fracture as “diseased”. Under the supervision of Bond University’s Professor Paul Glasziou, Dr Moynihan plans to investigate how and why so many disease definitions are expanding, in order to better respond to the problem of overdiagnosis.

  • Cate Swannell



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