Outstanding cancer researchers honoured with new awards

The State’s best and highest achieving cancer researchers have been recognised in the new Cancer Council Western Australia awards announced by His Excellency Malcolm McCusker, AC CVO QC, Governor of Western Australia, at Government House in Perth.

Two of the three awards went to researchers from the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research.

The Cancer Council Western Australia Research Excellence Awards are the first, and only, awards to recognise the significant achievement of those working in the cancer research field in this State.

The inaugural winners from the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research were :

Dr Terry Boyle - Early Career Cancer Researcher of the Year Dr Boyle’s research during his PhD found that too much sitting was a risk factor for several cancers, and his article was one of the first to show that long-term sedentary work may increase the risk of bowel cancer. In his short research career, his work has already had a significant impact in the scientific community internationally.

Professor Ruth Ganss - Cancer Researcher of the Year Professor Ganss has pioneered the field of vascular normalization, which is now being recognised as an emerging concept in anti-cancer therapy. Her research demonstrates that ‘opening’ up tumours by remodeling tumour vessels dramatically improves traditional cancer therapy and reduces side effects.

Cancer Council Western Australia President, Winthrop Professor Christobel Saunders said the Research Excellence Awards honoured both fledgling and established cancer researchers.

“We felt it was important to acknowledge people at different stages in their careers – from those just starting on the path to become a cancer researcher, to those who have dedicated their careers to cancer,” Professor Saunders said.

“Our aim is to attract and retain the very best cancer researchers in WA and support them in their careers. We know that having a robust and successful research environment has direct and positive outcomes for people with cancer, and is vital in the prevention and early detection of cancer,” she said.

The Director of the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research, Professor Peter Klinken, said he was delighted that the Cancer Council Western Australia had created these important awards to recognise research excellence, and that two of the three researchers honoured came from the Institute.

“We are extremely proud to be supporting first class research here at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research,” he said.

“Professor Ruth Ganss is making some amazing discoveries with her vascular research and Mr Boyle’s colorectal research is extremely important, especially for those in sedentary occupations.”

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