Since 2007, SSMRF has awarded just over $6million to 50 medical research grants at St George or Sutherland Hospitals.


Dr Megan Gow, BSc(Nutr)(Hons 1), BApplSc(ExSpSc), PhD

“Does exposure to pre-eclampsia in utero contribute to cardiovascular disease risk and ageing in early childhood?”

Professor Marissa Lassere, MBBS(Hons) (USyd), Grad Dip Epi (Newcastle), FRACP, PhD (UNSW) , FAFPHM

“The gut microbiome in inflammatory arthritis.”

Dr Jose Perdomo, PhD, BSci (Hons Class 1)

“The role of neutrophils in the pathology of immune thrombocytopenia”

Dr Michal Szczesniak,B. Biomed Sc. PhD

“Validation of SPECT/CT to assess airway clearance in chronic aspirators for a trial of Expiratory Muscle Strength Training (EMST) in reduction of radiation-related aspiration.”

Dr Nan (Betty) Wu, FRACP, MBBS (Hons), BSc (Hons I)

“Building Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) Research Capacity – The St George and Sutherland IBD Project”


Dr Amanda Henry

“The Microbiome in Pregnancy and Infancy, a comprehensive assessment of its composition, and its relationship to health and disease”

Professor Michael Grimm

“The longitudinal course of inflammatory bowel disease: psychological, microbial, immune and inflammatory determinants”

Dr Peter Wu

“Implications of Oro-Pharyngeal dysbiosis in the genesis of head and neck cancer and risk of complications in patients undergoing chemoradiation.”

Dr Bill Giannakopouulos

“Murine and human studies on the role of the gut microbiome in the pathogenesis of systemic lupus erythematosus and the antiphospholipid syndrome to expedite studies on prophylaxis and treatment”

Professor Beng Chong

“Role of microbiota dysbiosis in immune thrombocytopenia and thrombosis”


Capacity Building Grant Award was presented to:

Professor John Myburgh AO

Department of Intensive Care Medicine, St George Hospital

“St. George and Sutherland Critical Care Research Program: thermoregulation in acute brain injury (ABI) program.”


Seed Research Grant awarded to:

Dr Bill Giannakopoulos

Department Infectious Diseases, Immunology & Sexual Health, St George Hospital

“Beta 2-glycoprotein I: An important modulator of Gram-negative sepsis.”


Professor Marissa Lassere

Department of Rheumatology, St George Hospital

“A comparative effectiveness randomised placebo controlled pilot trial of the management of acute lumbar radicular pain: evaluate route versus pharmacology of intervention, and feasibility in public hospital and community practice settings.”

Dr Freda Passam

Department of Haematology, St George Hospital

“Functional disulphides of the platelet receptor alpha IIb beta 3 in health and disease.”


Scholarship Grant awarded to:

Dr Peter Iung-Chiang Wu

Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, St George Hospital

“Pharyngeal and oesophageal compliance – the clinical utility of Endolumenal Functional Lumen Imaging Probe in managing dysphagia.”


Clinician Researcher Grant awarded to:

Dr Fernando Roncolato

Department of Haematology, St George Hospital

“A pilot study of a randomised control trial assessing the impact of a supervised exercise program on the quality of life of lymphoma patients treated with chemotherapy – the EXEL study.”



Women’s and Children’s Health Targeted Grant awarded to:

Associate Professor Greg Davis

Women’s and Childrens Health, St George Hospital

“Postpartum Physiology, Psychology and Paediatric follow up Study (P4 Study).“


Sutherland Shire Council Grant awarded to:

Associate Professor Peter Gonski

Southcare, Department of Aged and Extended Care, The Sutherland Hospital

“The effect of exercise with and without manual therapy as an early intervention in mild chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.”


The 2014 Capacity Building Grant Award was presented to;
Professor Steven Krilis, Department of Immunology, Infectious Disease and Sexual Health, St George Hospital

“Novel mechanisms in the control of thrombosis and inflammation “


Kim-Chi Phan-Thien, Clinical Researcher Grant (Department Colorectal Surgery, St George Hospital)

“Colonic motility in diverticular disease”.

Peter Wu,Clinical Researcher Grant (Department Gastroenterology & Hepatology, St George Hospital)

“Clinical utility of Endoluminal Functional Imaging Probe in diagnosis and management of patients with eosinophilic oesophagitis”.

Freda Passam, Interim Research Grant (Department Immunology and Infectious Diseases, St George Hospital)

“Control of thrombus formation by S-nitrosylation”.

Fatima El-Assad, New Investigator Grant Applications (Department Immunology and Infectious Diseases, St George Hospital)

“The role of βeta2-glyocoprotein-1 in cerebral malaria”.

Beng Chong, Seed Research Grant (Haematology, St George Hospital)

“Development of a novel anti-platelet and anti-anticoagulant bifunctional molecule for targeted treatment of coronary artery disease”.

Marissa Lassere, Seed Research Grant (Department Rheumatology, St George Hospital)

“Serial biomarker profiling for risk-stratification and disease monitoring in rheumatoid arthritis”.


The 2013 Dr Barry Pearson AM research award was presented to;
Dr Amanda Henry: Clinician Researcher Grant (Womens’ and Childrens’ Health, St George Hospital).

“Evaluation of the myocardial performance index in ultrasonography of normal and complicated pregnancy”.

Dr Freda Passam: New Investigator Grant. (Department of Haematology, St George Hospital)

“Role of the thiol isomerase ERp5 in thrombus formation”

Ms Sue Polis: New Investigator Grant. (Department of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, St George Hospital)

“The impact of a nurse directed model of outpatient care on health outcomes, quality of life and service delivery for patients diagnosed with advanced liver disease”?

Prof Steve Krilis: Interim Support Grant. (Deptartment of Infectious Disease, Immunology and Sexual Health & Dept Gastroenterology & Hepatology, St. George Hospital)

“The role of mast cell specific serine proteases in inflammatory bowel disease”

Associate Professor Konstantin Yastrebov, Establishment (Seed) Grant (Department of Intensive Care Medicine, St George Hospital)

“Comparative Haemodynamic Assessment: InvaSive and Echocardiographic techniques”

Dr Jingli (Helen) Hao, Establishment Grant, New Investigator Category and Inaugural Macedonian Cancer Research Award (Cancer Care Centre, St George Hospital)

“Using proteomic approaches to identify novel biomarkers associated with prostate cancer radioresistance in in vivo animal models”

Professor Steven Krilis, Interim Support Grant (Department of Immunology, Infectious Disease and Sexual Health, St George Hospital)

“The role of beta 2 glycoprotein 1 in vascular health”


Dr Nicholas Cordato: Seed Grant
“The impact of routine post-discharge evaluation medical evaluations of nursing home patients following acute hospital admission”.

Dr James Weaver: New Appointee Grant
“Endothelial dysfunction and platelet activation in the setting of coronary disease”.

Aparna Padinjareveettil: Clinician Researcher Grant
“Does transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) enhance computerised cognitive remediation in patients with Schizophrenia? A randomised controlled trial in a rehabilitatory setting”.


Philip Choi: Scholarship (Medical)
“Heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT): Characterization of the pathogenic and non pathogenic antibodies, and studies to improve laboratory diagnosis and treatment”.

Dr. Bill Giannakopoulos: Establishment (New Appointee) Grant
“Analysis of the in vivo modulating role of beta 2-glycoprotein I on atheroma formation and apoptotic cell clearance in the lupus/autoimmune setting”.

The Paul Campbell Research Award, awarded to
Yong Li: Interim Grant
“CD44 and CD147 in prostate cancer metastasis and chemoresistance”.

Annie S Luo: Scholarship (Biomedical)
“Appendicitis and Intestinal Inflammation”.

Dr Michal Szczesniak: Establishment (Seed) Grant
“Development and validation of novel fibre-optic strain sensors for evaluation of longitudinal shortening of the human oesophagus”.

The 2011 Dr George C. Wilson AM Award was presented to Dr Justine Wang. Our thanks go to the family of Dr Wilson for their contribution to, and support of, this annual award. Dr Wang’s research report will appear later in 2012.


Dr Sharon Ong (Dept Nephrology): Establishment (New Appointee) Grant
“Masked hypertension in chronic kidney disease, dialysis and renal transplant patients”.

The Paul Campbell Research Award, awarded to
Dr Chris Weatherall (Dept Immunology): Establishment (New Appointee) Grant
“The role of mast cells in innate immunity”.

A/Prof Kate Curtis (Dept of Trauma Services): Establishment (New Investigator) Grant
“The cost of major trauma in NSW: Linkage analysis and recommendations health service planning”.

Ms Anthea Reus (Pelvic floor and bladder unit): Seed Grant in Aid
“Intermittent self-catheterisation: comparison of single use vs reuse of Nelaton catheters – health and cost implications”.

Dr Terrence Chua (Dept of Surgery): Foundation Travel Grant*
“Clinical Studies in Metastatic Gastrointestinal Cancer”.
*To enable recipient to present his research at a major international meeting


Dr Phil Dinning (Dept Gastroenterology & Hepatology): Establishment (New Investigator) Grant
“Automated analysis of colonic manometry: creating a diagnostic tool for patients with severe constipation”.

Dr Bill Giannakopoulos (Dept Immunology): Establishment (New Investigator) Grant
“Investigations into the modulatory activity of B2GPI on coagulation in vitro and in vivo”.

Dr Manoj Saxena (Dept Intensive Care Medicine): Establishment (New Investigator) Grant
“Prospective cohort study of temperature management after traumatic brain injury”.

The Paul Campbell Research Award, awarded to
Dr Peter Galettis (Dept of Medical Oncology): Establishment (New Investigator) Grant
“A quantitative assay for novel compounds that show promise as oral treatments for advanced prostate cancer”.

Dr Simon Liang (Dept of Haematology): Establishment (New Investigator) Grant
“Characterisation of the anticancer effects of She-Xiang-Bao-Xin, a Chinese medicine on human leukaemic and prostate cancer cells”.


The St George & Sutherland Medical Research Foundation supports the varied research work of the medical staff and researchers at St George and Sutherland hospitals. Both hospitals have a rich tradition of successful medical research that has positively impacted the lives of people in the local and wider communites.

NOTE: Individual research reports are added in the year following the end of the research award.

The Capacity Building Grant Scheme 2014

The St George & Sutherland Medical Research Foundation is excited to launch a new initiative for 2014 – the Capacity Building Grant Scheme. By providing substantive major grant support its purpose is to strengthen and grow a team of quality researchers who will enhance our overall research capacity and thereby increase the quantity and quality of innovative, internationally competitive research at St George & Sutherland Hospitals. In keeping with this strategy the Foundation has committed to award, through a highly competitive process subjected to a rigorous external review, a grant of $300,000 to an established and productive research team that has been able to demonstrate that the funds will truly build further research capacity within that group.

Professor Ian Cook

Chair, Scientific Advisory Committee

St George & Sutherland Medical Research Foundation