Neural pathways between research and industry boost brain research in Australia

28 April
Minister for Innovation Hon Philip Dalidakis MP presents the 24th veski innovation fellowship
Minister for Innovation Hon Philip Dalidakis MP presents the 24th veski innovation fellowship

Professor Jon Shah, a world leader in MR-PET technology development and biomedical imaging, was presented with a veski innovation fellowship, on Thursday, 28 April 2016 by The Hon Philip Dalidakis, Minister for Small Business, Innovation and Trade, in the presence of national and international leaders from research, industry and government partners. 

The veski innovation fellowships attract talented Australian and international scientists who are working overseas, to work in Australia. The goal being to further build research excellence in Victoria as well as promoting local, national and international academic collaborations and industry partnerships. 

veski chief executive officer Julia Page says that Professor Shah's international standing in the area of MR-PET in combination with access to advanced imaging technologies at Monash University — Shah’s host institution — will accelerate current Victorian collaborations and deliver transformational imaging technologies to the world. 

“Awarding the veski innovation fellowship to Professor Shah is a signal of our commitment to industry and research partnerships and the potential benefits they can have for all Australians,” says Page.

Research and technology partner Siemens Healthcare is renowned globally for its investment in MR research, establishing many long-standing and rewarding partnerships with leading institutes throughout Australia. 

“Siemens is very pleased to be working with Monash University and the Research Centre Jülich,” says David Brown, General Manager, Diagnostic Imaging for Siemens Healthcare. 

“As an innovation leader in MRI-PET technology, this is the space where we want to be together with our partners, enabling them to deliver ground-breaking outcomes and advanced science.”

MR-PET combines Positron Emission Tomography (PET) with Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) to provide more detailed imaging of physiological and biochemical processes. This powerful combination benefits the community through delivering enhanced knowledge of disease: enabling the development of new techniques for diagnosis and treatment. 

Being able to use these different imaging modalities at the same time is important for us to develop a greater understanding of how brain and other tissues function. For example, monitoring changes due to trauma and stress in the brain will lead to more accurate diagnoses and offers us the ability to develop improved treatments and monitor the healing process more rigorously. 

Professor Ian Smith, Vice Provost Research and Research Infrastructure at Monash University, says: “The arrival at Monash University of Professor Shah, from the Jülich Research Centre — an institute of the German Helmholtz Association — marks a significant milestone for both academic and industry relationships here in Australia, while at the same time cementing our connections with the international biomedical imaging community.” 

The funding of this veski innovation fellowship will be matched in cash and in-kind by Monash University.

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