$4M lift for SSMRF

Originally appeared in The Leader: Eva Kolimar – June 24, 2016, 12:30 p.m.

Ongoing medical research will have greater presence in our region as SSMRF welcomes a key funding pledge of the Coalition government.

SSMRF is set to receive $4 million from the federal government – a move the foundation said will lift the ambitions of medical research in our region. The funding will be tied to the development of a state-of-the-art facility, to house SSMRF researchers for many years to come.

Barton MP Nick Varvaris has helped the foundation for the past three years to gather funds, and said it would will cap off the strong growth of the Kogarah health precinct.

So, it’s an exciting time to support our work. Click the video below to see the areas that we will be focusing on in coming months.

“We have world class researchers in our hospitals – research attracts and retains the best doctors and nurses,” he said.

“This next phase of the foundation’s growth will mean more jobs, growth and innovation.

“This money will continue the excellent work done by the foundation and strengthen their standing.”

As part of its goal, the foundation attracted world-renowned researchers to develop research projects at St George and Sutherland Clinical School this year.

Harvard Professor Richard Stevens and scientist Lislaine Wensing, who is on a fellowship grant from Brazil, are working together in research laboratories at St George Hospital, studying varied inflammatory diseases.

Dr Wensing has a PhD in physiology and is a postdoctoral research fellow of immunology.

She is working under the supervision of Professor Stevens, an internationally recognised leader in the mast cell field, focusing on kidney disease.

His research has been instrumental in the understanding of the beneficial roles of mast cells in blood coagulation and innate immunity.

He has also researched the cell’s detrimental roles in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, inflammatory bowel disease, arthritis and allergic inflammation.

The foundation is also supporting Professor John Myburgh’s international research into brain injury.

Foundation chairman John Edmonds said the money is a substantial and timely boost, as the foundation is embarkeing on a major fundraising campaign.

He said businesses including St George Bank and Tynan Motors helped to set a platform for the Foundation.

“We want to attract more of the best researchers to the region because we know that medical research saves lives and improves lives,” Professor Edmonds said.

“The region’s hospitals deserve the best, and the foundation is determined to make sure that happens.”

If you would like to support the work of SSMRF, please click here to donate to medical research in our hospitals.