Our popular ‘SPIN TO WIN” Young Scientist competition made a comeback this year at the 48th Lorne Conference on Protein Structure and Function, Lorne Mantra Hotel, 5-8 February 2023. Focused on Protein research, the meeting connected world-leading scientists, students and industry participants and facilitated discussions of new and exciting advances. Our international guest speaker Dr Valerie Collins, delivered her recent work featuring a high-precision secondary structure characterisation tool developed by RedShiftBio: Characterising Amyloid-Forming IgG Light and Variable Chains Using Microfluidic Modulation Spectroscopy.

With every turn of the wheel, the exhibition hall exploded with laughter and cheers as participants progressed through to the final round. An Apollo stress toy, timers, pens, wireless chargers were great prizes, but the most appealing prize on the board was our $1200 Young Scientist Award. The crowd’s energy was intense as finally our two winners were announced! WATCH THE VIDEO HERE

Congratulations to Bethany Anderson – winner of the $1200 ‘Spin to Win’ Prize! and Anup Prasad – winner of the $600 runner-up prize!

Bethany Anderson completed her PhD in 2022 and is now a research fellow at The University of Melbourne in the Department of Biochemistry and Pharmacology in the lab of Dr Laura Edgington-Mitchell.

Bethany’s project is investigating the role of the cysteine protease legumain in promoting oral cancer growth. Currently, it is not possible to predict which cancers will metastasise and all patients must undergo long and invasive surgeries to prevent the spread of the tumour. Further studies are required to improve patient outcomes and better understand the mechanisms behind oral cancer growth and metastasis.  Bethany wishes to continue working in academia in the future and aims to make an impact in improving patient outcomes and care.

The award will be used to attend the 12th General Meeting of the International Proteolysis Society in Singapore in 2023. This will be a great opportunity for Bethany to present her work, network with other scientists from around the world and learn from the leaders in the field.

I’m stoked that I’ll now be able to attend this conference that I had been eyeing off!

Anup Prasad is a PhD student at the School of Chemistry, Monash University working under the supervision of Prof. Lisa Martin.

Anup’s research group studies the aggregation of amyloid-forming antimicrobial peptides and their mutants. Both computational and experimental techniques are used to investigate the structural changes, peptide-lipid interaction and their impact on aggregation. A variety of experimental conditions are studied including solvent containing lipid vesicles and different co-solvents. The peptide-lipid interaction and aggregation studies are important for the development of drug delivery and therapeutic agents against amyloidosis.

After completing his PhD, Anup plans pursue research in the field of protein biochemistry or protein engineering. The award money will be used to attend the next Peptide Chemistry and Protein Engineering conference (ICPCPE 2023), in Sydney.

I am thankful to ATA Scientific for this award and it really does matter for my research.

Congratulations to our winners!

The SPIN to WIN award is part of the ATA Scientific Encouragement award program that started in 2011. The intent is to provide scientists access to financial assistance to enable them to collaborate with peers at scientific meetings and to launch their careers within their field of study. The awards are run at least four times a year which has so far awarded over 90 winners from multiple Universities and research organisations around Australia and New Zealand. We plan to continue posting these awards into the future and encourage all students to enter.

For more information regarding our award or to enter the next competition, contact us or visit our webpage at https://www.atascientific.com.au/awards-events-training/current-award/