Annual Young Tall Poppy Science Awards for 2018

Nominations close a midnight on Monday the 9th of April…..

The Tall Poppy Campaign was created in 1998 by the Australian Institute of Policy and Science (AIPS) to recognise and celebrate Australian intellectual and scientific excellence and to encourage younger Australians to follow in the footsteps of our outstanding achievers. It has made significant achievements towards building a more publicly engaged scientific leadership in Australia.

The Tall Poppy Campaign currently recognises the achievements of Australian scientists through the prestigious annual Young Tall Poppy Science Awards and the biennial CSL Florey Medal.

The Campaign’s Tall Poppies Reaching Students Program engages the winners of Young Tall Poppy Science Awards (‘Tall Poppies’) in activities to promote study and careers in science among school students and teachers as well as an understanding and appreciation of science in the broader community.

The objectives of the Campaign are to:

  • Engage the Australian public in celebrating Australian scientific excellence and recognising its relevance to public policy issues.
  • Foster an Australian culture which celebrates high achievers rather than ‘cutting them down’.Inspire younger Australians about the possibilities of science.
  • Encourage younger Australians to take up tertiary study and careers in the sciences.Improve the scientific literacy of the Australian public.
  • Encourage innovation and creativity through increased investment by government and industry-driven scientific research and development within Australia.
  • The Tall Poppy Campaign is funded nationally by universities and research institutes in each state and territory, see more at our partners.

Nationally, we also partner with the Australian Science Teachers Association (ASTA) and their state constituents, which includes annual support for CONASTA.

Nominations for the annual Young Tall Poppy Science Awards for 2018 will open FOR ALL STATES at 9am on Monday the 26th of February and close a midnight on Monday the 9th of April.

Uniquely, these awards recognise excellence in early career research across all the sciences including mathematics, alongside a passion and capacity to communicate science to the community.

Nominations are to be submitted electronically. 
The 2018 form may be accessed via this external site.
The submission process has changed slightly this year, so please take note of all instructions on the pages below and on the online form. Note: a video is requested as part of the submission but it is NOT REQUIRED. 

Download the 2018 Nomination Form here in PDF format. This is the same format as the online form but your submission must be done on the site.Note: this is a form to fill in, it will attach to an email as an .fdf file which we are able to open. 

If you are unable to complete the online form, please contact our office to arrange an alternative.

For more information please head to

Chronic pain treatment with stem cells – ARC Centre of Excellence for Nanoscale BioPhotonics (CNBP)

We had a fantastic Plenary Session at the AVA Conference today on the advances in understanding pain by Professor Mark Hutchinson of ARC Centre of Excellence for Nanoscale BioPhotonics (CNBP)… See this earlier article on the subject. The reference is: Australian Life Scientist

Chronic pain treatment with stem cells

By Life Scientist Staff Wednesday, 18 May, 2016 39  22  9  0  2

The Australian Research Council (ARC) has awarded a Linkage Grant of $340,000 to a research consortium investigating how stem cells can be used to relieve chronic pain.

The consortium brings together innovative cell labelling technologies developed by the ARC Centre of Excellence for Nanoscale BioPhotonics (CNBP) and a transdisciplinary team of researchers from Macquarie University, the University of Adelaide and regenerative medicine company Regeneus (ASX:RGS).

CNBP Director Professor Mark Hutchinson has previously demonstrated that neuropathic pain — pain caused by damage or disease affecting nerves — is controlled by our immune system. The good news, said Professor Hutchinson, is that stem cells secrete molecules that control or modulate the immune system.

“Because neuropathic pain is driven by the immune system, we can use stem cells to control and shut down the pain,” explained Professor Hutchinson, who is based at the University of Adelaide. “However, stem cells can secrete both good (anti-inflammatory) and bad (inflammatory) molecules; therefore, the use of cells that secrete the right molecules is going to be critical.”

With this in mind, CNBP Deputy Director Professor Ewa Goldys and her group at Macquarie University have developed cell labelling technologies to identify and select cells based on the molecules that they are secreting. This technology will be used for the manufacture of stem cells for the treatment of chronic pain.

“Our efforts will be largely based on utilising CNBP technology, incorporating innovative cell detection, molecular sensing and labelling know-how, operating at the nanoscale level,” Professor Goldys said.

The study will also build on Professor Hutchinson’s previous work which established that female chronic pain is more widespread than male pain. He noted, “Building on our ability to sense what is happening in the body at the cellular and molecular level, this project aims to develop a new understanding of pain as well as its differences related to gender.

“Establishing the fundamental mechanism in pain, the role of immune signalling and molecular mediators, we will enable true pain-modifying treatments which address pivotal trigger points in both females and males.”

Regeneus has patents and patent applications on the use of stem cells for the treatment of neuropathic pain and has had previous success with the use of stem cells for the treatment of neuropathic pain. The outcomes of the research project are expected to lead to the development of allogeneic off-the-shelf stem cell products that have been tailored for the treatment of neuropathic pain in both veterinary and human markets.

Image caption: Immune cell responses within the central nervous system in response to chronic pain. Image courtesy of CNBP under CC BY 2.0

Source: Chronic pain treatment with stem cells