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ResearchatthePerkinschanging thefutureofmelanoma Frankie fights melanoma Ourfirst birthday Bakingfor betterhealth Love yourliver MeettheLaing researchfamily Magazine of the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research Issue1 2015 2 PERKINS Issue 1 Ourcover Find out all about Frankies melanoma fight on page 11 of this issue. This edition of Perkins features Perth couple Matt and Michelle Prebble who are the proud parents of brave toddler Frankie. Frankies battle with melanoma is truly inspirational for our cancer researchers including Rikki Brown pictured in her laboratory who is making exciting progress with her research about the way melanoma spreads from the skin to other organs. PERKINS Magazine Issue 1 2015 Editor Carolyn Monaghan Perkins Communications Manager Email carolyn.monaghanperkins.uwa.edu.au Phone 08 6151 0721 Writers Alicia Murray-Jones Jennifer Turner Margaret Haydon Design iannellodesign.com.au Print Fineline Print Copy www.perkins.org.au We are very grateful to all our supporters whose contributions make our medical research possible. Connect with us at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research 6 4 Majorsupporters 11 McCusker Charitable Foundation Driving discovery delivering hope Contents Message from the Perkins Director 3 The Weekend to End Womens Cancers 4 Woodside Fellowship announced 5 Liver research at the Perkins 6 Love your liver DOs and DONTs 7 Bake your way to better health 9 Perkins reverses the brain drain 10 Frankie fights melanoma 11 Lunch supports melanoma research 12 Celebrate Kirkbrides new look 13 Laing Distal Myopathy meet the family 15 Discover our community laboratory 16 On your bike for optimum health 18 It was an exciting day. About 400 dignitaries from the health science and business communities in Western Australia watched as the Prime Minister officially opened our state-of- the-art institute within the QEII Medical Centre complex. Since then weve also had researchers and clinicians move into our Perkins building at the Fiona Stanley Hospital in Murdoch. This has been a huge year for starting some exciting new research projects and Robert Louis Stevensons famous quote is very apt Dont judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant. Weve recruited new internationally renowned researchers to join us in Perth enhancing our three major divisions Cancer and Cell Biology Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes and Molecular Medicine and Ageing. Of course weve also been nurturing our existing teams as they adjust to a new season. So much of this has been made possible by the fundraising efforts of the participants in our Ride to Conquer Cancer and the Weekend to End Womens Cancers. The fresh new faces at the Institute have received the necessary funding for their projects thanks to these events. The hugely popular microscope in one of our laboratories is only there due to the sweat and passion of our supporters. Professor Peter Leedman Director Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research Ayearofnewbeginnings Sothank youto everybody foryour supportand Ihopeyou enjoyreading ournew Perkins magazine. Sometimes I find it hard to believe that its been only 12 months since I stepped up to the podium to accept the Directorship of the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research. The Perkins will be a world leader in medical research delivering global improvements in human health. Our Vision Issue 1 PERKINS 3 4 PERKINS Issue 1 Community PerthWeekendtoEndWomensCancers The Weekend to End Womens Cancers in March attracted 780 inspirational women and men who gladly walked 60 kilometres to raised 1.8 million to support womens cancer research at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research. Many lost a few kilograms training for the long walk around Perth but only one of the participants sacrificed her crowning glory for the cause. The events top fundraiser Liza Carpene told colleagues in the mining industry that shed let them shave off her long hair if she managed to raise more than 20000. She raised more than 40000. It was hard to let go of my long hair she says But it was nothing compared with women who have had a breast removed. Liza survived a malignant melanoma in 1982 and lung cancer in 2007 which has left her with one lung and made the Weekend walk particularly challenging. However it was a mini-stroke last October which really motivated her to be part of the event. The mini-stroke knocked me for six then only two weeks later I found a lump in my breast. It turned out to be benign but I was so emotionally charged and felt so lucky that I wanted to contribute to cancer research. You never know when I might need it she says. Im connected to a lot of people through mining so I thought I could raise the money and the response has been overwhelming. Its quite emotional when my donors share their own stories with me and tell me they feel inspired. Register now for the 2016 walk on the 2nd and 3rd of April at endcancer.org.au Id dearly love to feel like Ive contributed in some small way to a cure for cancer. LizaCarpene. Researchers at the Perkins have already made significant breakthroughs in breast cancer research and recently discovered three new molecules that are key regulators in the oestrogen receptor signalling pathway. Other current projects funded by The Weekend include efforts to determine the role of hormones in cancer risk developing new techniques for treatment and understanding how tumours grow on a cellular level. TM Issue 1 PERKINS 5 Community Professor Ganss who is Scientific Head of Cancer and the Cell Biology division also leads her own laboratory at the Perkins which is focused on finding a way to effectively treat pancreatic and liver cancer tumours. When the Woodside Fellowship was announced the Chief Financial Officer of Woodside Lawrie Tremaine said Woodside was proud to support the Fellowship as part of its community investment program. Woodsides support of cancer research had been inspired by the dedication and commitment of our employees and their passion to make a difference Mr Tremaine said. In thanking Woodside Professor Peter Leedman the Director of the Perkins said that the support had enabled the Perkins to retain an outstanding researcher whose projects would have the potential to yield valuable findings that would increase the effectiveness of cancer therapies. WoodsideCancerResearch Fellowannounced Professor Ruth Ganss a Perkins cancer research scientist of international repute has been awarded the prestigious Woodside Cancer Research Fellowship. The Fellowship was established this year with a donation of 1M by Woodside. While the survival rates for many cancers have improved because of medical research there are some cancers for which the prognosis is poor and it is these cancers that are the focus of our research at the Perkins said Professor Leedman. Following a postgraduate Fellowship at the University of California San Francisco Professor Ganss became a research team leader during her seven years at the German Cancer Research Centre in Heidelberg. Professor Leedman said that the Institute was fortunate to attract Ruth to Western Australia in 2006 and now the Fellowship would ensure that she continued her valuable work at the Perkins. Professor Ruth Ganss. Itsanhonourtobe selectedastheinaugural Woodsidecancer researchfellow. ProfessorRuthGanss. 6 PERKINS Issue 1 Research Hes right of course. The liver is vital for detoxification and producing the biochemicals needed to digest food as well as many other functions. Professor Yeoh heads a team of medical researchers at the Perkins in the Liver Disease and Carcinogenesis laboratory who are developing new methods for diagnosing and treating an array of liver conditions. The research has never been more important than it is now with cases of liver cancer increasing by alarming proportions due to hepatitis and obesity. ProfessorYeohsaysorgandonationwillnotbeable tokeepupwithdemandduetothemassiveincrease ofpeopleneedinglivertransplants. Weneedtohaveanalternativewaytotreatthenumber ofpatientswhowill getliverdiseasehesays. In my laboratory we grow liver stem cells which can be used to create bio-artificial organs. This gives the patient a larger window of opportunity while theyre waiting to receive an organ. In the future we may also transplant these cells back into patients to treat some liver conditions. Its exciting to think that it might be viable to use transplanted cells to regenerate a damaged liver. Professor Yeoh says its also hoped that stem cells can be used as a cell therapy approach to treat other liver diseases. While we cant reveal exactly what the diets will be both are well- known for their health benefits and participants should be feeling good at the end of the trial. There are a few conditions. Participants must be over 18 and have already been diagnosed with fatty liver disease. They need to be able to stick to the diet for 12 weeks. Over that period theyll also need to visit the Perkins in Nedlands for a total of four reviews. As well as assisting research participants will reap the benefits of a thorough examination of their metabolic health and should feel healthier after the 12 week diet by a qualified dietician. Join now by contacting Dr Adams on leon.adamsuwa.edu.au or 6151 1052. Professor George Yeoh has spent 40 years studying the largest organ in the human body and says that its impossible to live without your liver. Dr Leon Adams from the University of WAs School of Medicine and Pharmacology is running a trial at the Perkins to try to find the best diet to treat patients with fatty liver disease and he needs your help. LiverresearchatthePerkins Helpourexpertsfindtheright dietforafattyliver Incontrastto manyothercancers whichareexpectedto havegreatlydecreased mortalityratesthemortality rateforlivercanceris predictedtohave increasedby 39by2030. Dr Leon Adams is looking for volunteers for his diet trial. Issue 1 PERKINS 7 DONT Smoke.Tobaccoisbadnewsandmarijuanaisnot onlyillegalitsparticularlydangerousforliverfunction. EatthesweetenerFructose.Theliveristheonly organwhichcanmetabolisefructoseandifits overloadedtheliverwillturnthefructoseintofat. Checktheingredientsinhighlyprocessedfoods forfructosewhichmaybelabelledascornsyrup. Productstocheckincludesweetenedbreakfast cerealssnackssaladdressingsandsaucesaswellas beverages.Freshfruitandvegetablesarestillfineto eatalthoughtheycontainnaturalsugarswhichare aminorsourceoffructose.Avoidfructosewithour recipesonpage9 Courtesy of Tareq Salahuddin Eat Trans fats. These are created artificially during the processing of some fats and oils in order to make foods taste good and last longer on supermarket shelves. Trans fats are bad for the liver because they interfere with an enzyme called delta 6 desaturase which is involved in converting the essential fatty acids needed to keep cells functioning. Watch out for trans fats in deep fried and baked goods. Some examples are store-bought biscuits cakes pies and pastries. Avoid trans fats with our recipes on page 9 DOs and DONTs for liver health loveyour liver Drinkalcoholinmoderation. Whenthelivertriestobreakdown excessivealcoholtheresultingchemical reactioncancausedamageresulting ininflammationandscarringastheliver triestorepairitself.Australianguidelines foralcoholconsumptionarenowtwo standardglassesadayformenandone forwomen.Bothgendersshouldhave twoalcohol-freedayseachweek. Drinkqualitycoffee.Somecompounds incoffeehavebeenshowntoprotectthe liver.Dontrelyoninstantcoffeegranules thoughtreatyourselftoanespresso. Watch your weight. Measure your waist circumference regularly as this is a good indication of fat around internal organs. Get some exercise. Being active has many health benefits and if you burn calories and lose weight youll be helping to prevent non- alcoholic fatty liver disease. DO Sources Wikipedia National Heart Foundation PreventionOver-indulgence is only human The good news is that many liver diseases are totally preventable. Unfortunately the problem is that Australians are not very good at protecting this important organ. In developing countries where theres a high prevalence of hepatitis due to a lack of vaccinations and peri-natal transmission viral hepatitis is a leading cause of liver disease. But in Australia hepatitis is less of a problem than our big appetites and the corresponding size of our waistlines. Even though there are some genetic factors involved in fatty liver disease it can mainly be prevented by maintaining a healthy body weight and lifestyle explains gastroenterologist Leon Adams. The problem is that all humans are hard-wired to want to eat food and of course the tastier the better Dr Adams says that obesity leads to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease which can affect people of any age and often the patient isnt even aware that their liver is engorged with fat because there are few symptoms. Drinking too much alcohol is still a major cause of fatty liver disease. 8 PERKINS Issue 1 Issue 1 PERKINS 9 The easiest way to avoid the damaging effects of fructose and trans fats is to avoid highly processed foods bought at the supermarket such as snack bars biscuits and cakes. Try these simple-to-bake homemade treats instead. They taste better too This easy slice smells delicious while baking Its also a great dessert served warm. Bakeyourwaytobetterhealth These yummy banana and oat bars contain no fat or added sugar. Ideal for lunchboxes or a snack on the go. Try to find the organic dried fruit available in most supermarkets. Ingredients 3 large ripe bananas Juice of one large orange 3 cups traditional rolled oats 14 cup chopped dried dates 14 cup chopped dried apricots 14 cup slivered almonds 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon 1 tsp vanilla extract Method Preheat oven to 180C or 160C fan-forced. Use margarine to grease a slice tin. Line with baking paper. Mash banana with the freshly squeezed orange juice until the mixture is smooth. Add the oats dates apricots almonds cinnamon and vanilla. Stir until well combined. Spoon into the prepared slice tin. Using the back of the spoon press down evenly. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden. Cool completely. Cut into bars. Ingredients 1 cup of boiling water 1 cup of raw sugar 125 gramsorganic dried apricotschopped 185 grams polyunsaturated margarine 2 cups self raising flour cup dessicated coconut Pinch of salt Method Preheat oven to 180C fan-forced. Use margarine to grease a slice tin.Line with baking paper. Place apricotsin a shallow bowl and pour over boiling water. Allow to soak until soft about 10minutes. In a clean bowl use electric beaters to cream margarine andsugar until light and fluffy. Sift flour intobowl then add coconut andsalt. Mix well. Drain the apricots and reserve half a cup of the water. Add theapricots and reservedwater to flour mixture andstir to combine. Spoon into slice tin and smooth top lightlywith wet fingertips. Bake for 25to 30 minutes or untilgolden brown. Allow time for slice to cool before usinga sharp knife to cut into squares. Crumbly apricot sliceSuperhealthymueslibars Prevention 10 PERKINS Issue 1 Recently the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research was delighted to reverse this situation enticing internationally renowned genomic researcher Alistair Forrest from his laboratory in Tokyo. Professor Forrest has joined the Perkins to continue his important work in Systems Biology and Genomics with a renewed focus on cancer. He recently published breakthrough discoveries about cell development in top international journal Science following years of work on the Japan-based FANTOM5 project which made major strides toward resolving an outstanding mystery in biology. All humans start from a single fertilized egg which divides repeatedly and eventually forms all the cells that make up our bodies. During this process different sets of genes are switched on or off to run different programs in each of the 200 or so cell types that make up our bodies Professor Forrest explained. What has been studied in this work is how your cells switch from one cell type or program to another. Its amazing what can be achieved through large scale collaborative research. The consortium showed that when cells undergo changes such as differentiation into specialized cell types the initial activation happens at DNA regions called enhancers a type of regulatory switch which are typically located far from the genes that they activate. The research which examined a variety of cellular changes showed that activation of enhancers triggers the coordinated waves of change that end up dramatically changing the cells traits. In particular enhancers are activated in the first 15 minutes after stimuli and then activate a specific type of regulatory gene transcription factors at 30-100 minutes which in turn have the ability to activate other genes over time forming a cascade of changes. Professor Forrest was born in Western Australia and was recruited to the Perkins thanks to funds raised in the 2014 Ride to Conquer Cancer as well as a Senior Cancer Fellowship from the Cancer Research Trust. Professor Forrest was welcomed by Perkins Director Professor Leedman who said that cancer research was a major focus for the institute and he looked forward to exciting new developments from Professor Forrests laboratory. Other Australian-based authors in the Science paper were Professor Peter Klinken WAs Chief Scientist and Dr Louise Winteringham at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research Professor Ernst Wolvetang and Associate Professor Christine Wells at the Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology UQ and Dr Timo Lassmann at the Telethon Kids Institute. The FANTOM5 project also included collaboration with international experts in bioinformatics genomics immunology obesity and stem cell biology from around the world. Research PerkinsreversestheBrainDrain The Brain Drain effect is well known in Australia researchers hang up their lab coats to take their brilliant intelligence and years of training to a career opportunity in another country. ItsgreattobebackinWAafter 20yearsaway.Thereisthiscriticalmass formingformedicalgenomicsciencein Perthanditsanexcitingtime. ProfessorAlistairForrest. Issue 1 PERKINS 11 Rikki Brown shows Yvonne Kirkbride her latest research. Brave Frankie with her Dad Matt. It was Frankies Mum Michelle who first noticed the small pink spot on her daughters forearm at the end of 2013 when she was just two years old. Perth researcher Rikki Brown is making exciting breakthroughs with her work on deadly melanoma known as Australias cancer thanks to funding from the Kirkbride Melanoma Centre. Ms Brown is based at the Laboratory for Cancer Medicine at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research in Nedlands and her work focuses on the way melanoma spreads from the skin to other organs. We identified a molecule known as a microRNA which shows great potential as a treatment to stop melanoma spreading Ms Brown said. We have found this molecule is able to reduce the processes that promote the spread of melanoma. Were now working to understand how it does it she said. We are also looking at potential therapies for melanoma patients and trying to use our research to predict if a patients disease will return. Ms Brown said that new treatments were urgently needed because patients typically died of melanoma when it spread to organs such as the lung liver and brain. The Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research is proud that Rikkis exciting research is happening in Western Australia under the supervision of Professor Peter Leedman and with collaborative support from Dr Keith Giles in New York. Frankies Mum and Dad are passionate supporters of melanoma research at the Perkins following their toddlers diagnosis with the deadly cancer twice in the past two years. Meet Melanoma Researcher Rikki Brown Frankie fights Melanoma At first I thought it was just because she has sensitive skin Mrs Prebble said. Shes never been sunburnt. Ive always been very careful about sun protection. Frankies melanoma diagnosis not only shocked her family but also several general practitioners and specialists who said she only had a 1 in 5 million chance of melanoma. Then early this year shortly before Frankies third birthday Michelle realised a freckle on Frankies upper arm had become raised and dark. Her doctors were quick to realise she had melanoma again and removed the lesion as well as seven other superficial spots on her skin including her scalp. None of the lesions had spread so there was no need for further treatment but its the ones we cant see which worry me said Michelle. We have appointments with an ophthalmologist and a gastroenterologist. Frankie has recovered well from her surgery and Dad Matt says shes been very brave. At times shes held us together with her laughter radiant smile and endless cuddles he said. Perth surgeon Dr Mark Lee said it was important to realise that childhood melanomas sometimes presented differently to adult melanomas so they could look like harmless skin conditions. Internationally respected scientist Professor Meenhard Herlyn who recently visited Perth for a major melanoma conference organised by the Kirkbride Melanoma Centre said that although Frankies rare case had not involved sunburn 80 of melanomas were due to ultraviolet light DNA damage. Even though its an exciting time for melanoma care in the United States with the recent approval of six new drugs which are proven to shrink tumours its still vitally important to think about prevention by protecting the skin from the sun he said. Research 12 PERKINS Issue 1 Community Lunchsupports melanomaresearch Funding from the luncheon will be channelled into the crucial research carried out at the Kirkbride Centre which is currently investigating potential treatments to stop melanoma spreading. The significance of the luncheon and its fundraising purpose were highlighted by guest speaker Bonnie Stacey. Bonnie spoke about her experience of being diagnosed with melanoma when she was 20 years old her subsequent operations and the emotional challenges of being diagnosed so young. Bonnie emphasised the importance of medical research and how it could offer her and other young Australians diagnosed with melanoma the option of new treatments and a future free of regular MRI scans. Lighter moments were provided by hilarious actor and comedian Peter Rowsthorn who entertained guests with stories about the unique joys of living in Western Australia. Renowned wine critic Ray Jordan also conducted a popular wine quiz with guests testing their knowledge of the region style and vintage of a mystery wine with the winner receiving an amazing magnum of Xanadu Cabernet Sauvignon. The success of the luncheon would not have been possible without the generosity of our guests and auction item donors. Thanks also to the Kirkbride Melanoma Centre Committee and Vonnies Volunteers who did a wonderful job coordinating tables. We are very grateful to everyone for your support. Guests at the 10th anniversary fundraising luncheon showed their unwavering support for the Kirkbride Melanoma Centre by raising nearly 70000 for melanoma research. Peter Leedman and Peter Rowsthorn. Bonnie and Andrea Stacey Garry Prendiville Bill Biffin Karil Roxburgh Michael Prendiville and Jamie PrendivilleMC Mark Readings addresses guests Issue 1 PERKINS 13 Community CelebrateKirkbridesnewlook 2015 is an auspicious year for the Kirkbride Melanoma Centre formerly the Scott Kirkbride Melanoma Research Centre as it marks its 10th anniversary since establishment. For over a decade the Kirkbride Melanoma Centre has been supporting innovative research in its goal to discover new treatments and provide better diagnosis for those living with melanoma. Vonnie and Nick Kirkbride Itisanexcitingtime ofdevelopmentforthe KirkbrideMelanoma Centre. Wethankallofour supporterswhohave beenwithusonthe journeyduringthe past10years There have been a number of achievements most of which have been due to the generosity of the Kirkbride Melanoma Centres supporters. Of particular note is the grants program a scheme that has generated various discoveries including a molecule that has the potential to stop the spread of melanoma links to sun exposure and melanoma initiation and progression and the genetic analysis of melanoma cells in relation to personalised treatment. The success of the grants program is demonstrated by the fact that all grant recipients have published melanoma research findings extending our knowledge about this complex disease while providing a track record to advance researchers career opportunities. As we enter a new decade the Kirkbride Melanoma Centre is also recruiting a new Chair of Melanoma. The importance of this role cannot be understated. It is the first time that such a position will be offered in Western Australia. The role will bring with it a team of highly qualified melanoma specialists while also providing a training ground for early career researchers. Given the recent breakthroughs for treating advanced melanoma with new targeted therapies it is a field that is very exciting and the Kirkbride Melanoma Centre is pleased to be an active part of it. We have a bold vision for the Kirkbride and recruiting a Professor of Melanoma Research is just the first step. We are also pursuing the opportunity to engage a Clinical Chair in Melanoma a person to lead a State Service in the treatment of advanced melanoma. This person will be a practicing doctor who will direct a clinical research program focused on improving patient outcomes. In light of this growth the Centre has moved to modernise its name. Kirkbride Melanoma Centre is a bit easier to roll off the tongue and loses none of the important meaning behind the name says Von Kirkbride Founder and Ambassador. The crucial work to discover breakthroughs for improved diagnosis and treatment of melanoma does not change. I hope our supporters agree and like the new look. It is an exciting time of development for the Kirkbride. We thank all of our supporters who have been with us on the journey during the past 10 years as we look to position the Kirkbride Melanoma Centre at the forefront of melanoma research and clinical treatment for the benefit of the Western Australian community. 14 PERKINS Issue 1 DISCOVER WHAT YOU CAN DO IN ONE WEEKEND. The Weekend to End Womens Cancers benefiting the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research is a life-changing journey like no other. For two courageous days and 60 bold kilometres join thousands of women and men united in a display of commitment and courage to end womens cancers. Funds raised through The Weekend help power breast and ovarian cancer research at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research. Be a part of this life-changing journey. REGISTER TODAY. ENDCANCER.ORG.AU 1300 99 WALK 9255 Issue 1 PERKINS 15 Research I thought Dads not telling us something said Yvonne. My parents didnt like to talk about it but I knew that there was some kind of condition which had been creating weak ankles and hands in the family for generations. Up to that time the only feedback Id had from Dad was that I should pick up my feet. It was 1989 and Yvonne happened to mention her symptoms in a Christmas letter to her GP. That letter was passed on to Professor Nigel Laing head of the Neurogenetic Diseases Laboratory at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research who immediately began work in his laboratory to find the cause of the disease. 15 years later in 2004 Professor Laing discovered the myosin gene MYH7. This Perth family was the key to the research which uncovered Laing Distal Myopathy but its since been found to affect people world-wide he says. Often patients have been diagnosed with other conditions but this distal myopathy is actually the most common in the world. The Laing team is still making significant progress with its research into the condition and the latest update on the disease has been published recently in Human Mutation which is the official journal of the Human Genome Variation Society. Professor Laing says the update will help doctors around the world to make more accurate diagnoses of patients with symptoms of muscle weakness. Our research across Australia Europe and the United States showed that some patients were being incorrectly diagnosed with a nerve disease when they actually had Laing distal myopathy because the patients appeared to have similar traits he says. Professor Phillipa Lamont lead author on the paper is the Director of the Neurogenetic Unit at Royal Perth Hospital. She co-ordinated and collated the clinical information from multiple centres around the world where Laing distal myopathy patients have been recognised. It is often confined to the muscles of the legs and arms causing weak ankles and fingers but it can also cause significant problems with the heart she says. In fact both extremes of symptoms can exist within one family and the age at which symptoms emerge can be anywhere from birth through to adulthood. Yvonne is now 69 and has a large family. Her relatives have a range of symptoms and some family members do not have Laing Distal Myopathy at all. The family wholeheartedly supports Professor Laings medical research and hope that hell find a cure one day. Professor Nigel Laing and Professor Phillipa Lamont back row with Yvonnes family who all have Laing Distal Myopathy. Left to right in front row Derek Hills cousin Leah Cunningham daughter Yvonne Cunningham and Gavin Jones son. Yvonne Cunningham was a regular badminton player when she suddenly found it difficult to run. Only in her forties at the time she immediately suspected that a genetic disease was affecting her muscles. Perthfamilyscondition namedafterPerkinsresearcher Laing Distal Myopathy 16 PERKINS Issue 1 Community Discoverourcommunitylaboratory The Centres Outreach Manager Pauline Charman describes her work with the community as a dream come true. Pauline started her career as a science teacher and says she was often looking for opportunities to take kids outside of the classroom and allow them to learn in a real-world setting. Science was very dry in the classroom as there was only so much you were able to do that would engage kids especially when it came to the human body Pauline says. I wanted to give my students hands-on learning opportunities and it was evident that when the kids handled the real equipment and spoke to real scientists they became more engaged and excited. One year on from the establishment of the Lotterywest BioDiscovery Centre having welcomed adults of all ages to the laboratory Pauline says community feedback continues to drive her passion to educate. Why should kids have all the fun she asks. The proof of principle is people saying they walked away with a much better understanding of medical research and how scientists are trying to solve the mysteries of human health. I want to show everybody that the work of researchers will impact them directly. I want to demystify genetics and biotechnology for the layperson and illustrate its significance in our everyday lives she says. The Lotterywest BioDiscovery Centre at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research provides people of all ages with the opportunity to learn more about the process of finding a cure or new treatments for serious diseases. Come and share the fascinating and complex world of medical research. For more information about the Lotterywest BioDiscovery Centre or to book your spot in our next community session head to biodiscovery.org.au Have you ever felt the urge to find out how medical research really works Thisis somethingthats realandhappening hereinWestern Australiaforthe peopleofWA. Demystifying the cellular processes in our bodies. Learning how to use a scientists tool of trade the pipette. Educational sessions for school groups fit in with the science curriculum Experiencewhatits liketobeaMedical ResearchScientistunder ourexpertguidance. Dates available to visit the BioDiscovery Centre within the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research are Saturday May 16th 11am to 1pm Saturday June 6th 11am to 1pm Itsyourturn 18 PERKINS Issue 1 Prevention Onyourbikeforoptimumhealth When the Ride to Conquer Cancer was launched three years ago Dr Carolyn Williams was one of the first cyclists to embrace the major fundraising event. One of the worst things about a diagnosis like this is the feeling of losing control she says. With the support of her cycling buddy Craig Proctor Carolyn continued to train and then took part in her first gruelling Ride event even though she was half way through her course of chemotherapy treatments. Three Ride events later she believes that her years of cycling and healthy eating helped set her up physically to beat breast cancer. I think I dealt with the surgery and chemotherapy reasonably well because I was so fit she says. Even so chemo is exhausting and its hard to find the energy to do anything because you feel physically and mentally so run-down. Its tough to even get on your bike but having the 200 kilometre ride as a goal is a good motivator. Carolyn ConquersCancer Trainingforafundraisingeventlike theMacaRidetoConquerCancer isreallyinspirational. The Research Manager at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research thought the 200 kilometre ride would be a fun way to raise funds for her colleagues undertaking cancer research projects at the institute. At that stage her motivation was professional not personal. I encouraged my friends and family to take part because Im a scientist and a passionate believer in medical research Carolyn says. With the help of all my friends we organised a quiz night which raised 12000. Just before the quiz night the 49 year old found a lump in her breast. I went for a biopsy the day before the quiz night which was very emotional. The night of my fundraiser was so hard because we were all there to support cancer research and I was waiting for the results and didnt know whether I had breast cancer or not she says. Unfortunately the diagnosis was positive. It was such a distressing time. My grandmother died of breast cancer many years ago but my Mum is fine. CONQUERCANCER.ORG.AU This event will reach capacity and registration will close. GET YOUR SPOT TODAY. Join The MACA Ride to Conquer Cancer benefiting Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research and experience a life-changing event. Ride side by side with people of all cycling abilities on this groundbreaking 2-day cycling quest through the picturesque landscapes of Western Australia to the triumphant finish lineone Ride closer to a cancer-free future. Funds raised through the MACA Ride to Conquer Cancer support ground-breaking cancer research at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research Western Australias premier adult medical research institute. All you need is motivation a bike and a helmet. Join us 1300 99 RIDE EPIC RIDE. EPIC IMPACT. 20 PERKINS Issue 1 Phone 61 8 6151 0700 Fax 61 8 6151 0701 infoperkins.org.au Perth Campus QQ Block QE11 Medical Centre 6 Verdun St Nedlands WA 6009 PO Box 7214 Shenton Park Western Australia 6008 Credit card payment - please debit my Amex Security No CVV Code No Card No Card Holders Name Signature Expiry Date I would like to make a donation today of Cheque or money orders - Please make payable to the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research and post to the PO Box address listed above. To see our Privacy Policy please go to www.perkins.org.au 1. www.perkins.org.au click Donate Here 2. Phone 08 6151 0720 3. Post this form to the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research PO Box 7214 Shenton Park WA 6008 or fax to 08 6151 0701 Please send me information about helping the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research through my will. Donations over 2 are tax deductible and a receipt will be issued. Title First name Surname Company Address Suburb Postcode Phone Mobile Email YES I would like to donate to the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research and make a difference Thereare3waysyoucandonateAllcontributionstothePerkinsgodirectlytoadvancing medicalresearch.Ifyouwouldliketosupportaspecificarea ofresearchpleasetellus. CHEQUECREDITCARD Please tick the box if you do not wish to receive information from us. www.perkins.org.au AboutthePerkins Stayintouch The Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research is Western Australiaspremieradultmedicalresearchinstitutewithstrong collaborative links to life-saving research around the world. If youd like to receive this free magazine in your letter box twice a year please email us your name and postal address at infoperkins.org.au We can also email our monthly e-newsletters keeping you up to date with our latest medical research on a regular basis. For more information call Carolyn on 6151 0721 or visit our website perkins.org.au Using cutting-edge technologies our researchers work on many types of cancer heart disease and stroke diabetes kidney and liver neurogenetic diseases and mitochondrial disease. We are located in two brand new state-of-the-art research hubs at the QEII Medical Centre in Nedlands and at the Fiona Stanley Hospital in Murdoch. Both buildings are strong Perth landmarks with the distinctive Perkins signature on display. The new facilities include laboratories where our researchers make their discoveries clinical areas for patient trials and office space. We also work from Royal Perth Hospital. Our teams collaborate to make new discoveries in the laboratory then translate this knowledge into more effective cures and treatments. Due to the Perkins close links with major teaching hospitals we are also uniquely positioned to fast track new ways to diagnose diseases leading to a quicker response time and more individualised treatments for patients. We are named after our inaugural Chairman the inspirational Harry Perkins. Our logo is based on his signature. Connect with us at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research