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Home > Press > Western Australia Sends Leading Researchers and Prize-winning Students to BIO2008 International Convention

Abstract:
Delegates to participate in BioGENEius Challenge and panel discussions

Western Australia Sends Leading Researchers and Prize-winning Students to BIO2008 International Convention

PERTH, Western Australia | Posted on June 12th, 2008

The Government of Western Australia today announced that a Western Australian delegation of three internationally recognized biotechnology researchers and two BioGENEius prize-winning students will participate in the world's biggest biotechnology conference, the BIO 2008 International Convention, to be held in San Diego June 17-20.

The Western Australian researchers attending the conference include the Head of the Molecular Genetic Therapy Group at the Centre for Neuromuscular and Neurological Disorders, University of Western Australia, Professor Steve Wilton; Director of Orthopaedic Research at the University of Western Australia, Professor Ming Hao Zheng; and the Chief Executive Officer of Orthocell Pty Ltd, Paul Anderson.

Additionally, two Western Australian high school students studying biotechnology will attend the convention to compete against top North American biotechnology students in the sanofi-aventis BioGENEius Challenge.

Western Australia's Chief Scientist, Professor Lyn Beazley, commented, "Western Australia benefits from brilliant people and opportunities, a strong research base, ample innovation, an enjoyable lifestyle and a promising biotechnology future. Western Australia is conducting world-leading research in biomedicine, medical devices, agri-biotech, environmental biotechnology, industrial biotechnology, nanotechnology and bioinformatics. We are experiencing unprecedented growth due to our rich resources reserves, and our strengths in mining and agriculture are providing Western Australia's biotechnology industry with a strong foundation to continue this growth."

Western Australian Participation in BIO2008

Western Australia's three researcher delegates will be speaking on the following panels at BIO 2008:

* Professor Steve Wilton, Head of the Molecular Genetic Therapy Group at the Centre for Neuromuscular and Neurological Disorders, University of Western Australia, will be chairing a session called "New Therapeutic Modalities: Opportunities and Challenges," on Tuesday, June 17 from 1:30-3:00 pm PDT.
* Professor Ming Hao Zheng, Director of Orthopaedic Research at the University of Western Australia, and Mr. Paul Anderson, CEO of Orthocell Pty Ltd., will be chairing a session called "Opportunity Knocks: Cell Therapies in Regenerative Medicine," on Wednesday, June 18 from 4:00-5:30 pm PDT.

The two Western Australian high school students will compete in the sanofi-aventis BioGENEius Challenge on Wednesday, June 18. Both students have made discoveries that may be important to biomedical agriculture and health.

* Oliver Tester established a subterranean peptide marker clover library that will catalogue the different types of clover available to sheep farmers. This will help to quickly identify the varieties that contain high levels of estrogen that could lead to clover disease in sheep. His research has improved the accuracy and reduced the time it takes to carry out a seed purity test of clover varieties to only two days, a time saving of six weeks.

* Bindhu Holavanahalli used cutting-edge GeneChip technology to understand how sulphur dioxide affects table grapes. Sulphur dioxide is put on grapes to give them a longer shelf life, but Bindhu's research found that it also increases the production of antioxidants, giving greater nutritional value to the consumer.

About Western Australian Biotechnology

Western Australia's biotechnology companies, organisations and scientists are using world-leading research to attract international interest and investment. Strong government support; strengths in medical databases; and proposed infrastructure, including the establishment of an early phase clinical trials facility and plans for two new biotechnology precincts, are just some of the exciting reasons why Western Australia's biotechnology future is brilliant. Western Australian universities and research institutes are home to internationally recognized researchers, including Professor Barry Marshall and Dr. Robin Warren, who won the 2005 Nobel Prize for Medicine for their discovery of the bacterium Helicobacter pylori and its role in gastritis and peptic ulcer disease.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
MacDougall Biomedical Communications
Jennifer Greenleaf
781-235-3060

Copyright © Business Wire 2008

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