Press Releases

Press Release - Scientific luminaries join the Stem Cells Australia Advisory Committee

09 July 2012

Scientific luminaries join Stem Cells Australia’s Advisory Committee

Stem Cells Australia is delighted that six internationally renowned researchers have agreed to join our Scientific Advisory Committee and provide strategic advice and independent evaluation of research undertaken in this ARC Special Initiative in Stem Cell Science.

With impressive scientific expertise spanning developmental biology, bioengineering and genetics, as well as extensive knowledge of the international stem cell field, the members of the Scientific Advisory Committee will make a substantial contribution to Stem Cells Australia’s research program.

Professor Martin Pera, Chair of Stem Cell Science at the University of Melbourne and Program Leader of Stem Cells Australia, said “We are extremely fortunate to have been able to attract experts with such impressive talents complementing the research focus of our initiative.  I am delighted that we will have the support of such an fantastic group of scientists.”

The Scientific Advisory Committee will meet annually with the next meeting scheduled to coincide with Stem Cells Australia’s November 2012 Scientific Conference.

During July 2012, one of the Committee members – Prof Peter Zandstra – will be providing a keynote address at the BioNano Innovation Conference in Brisbane and also visiting Stem Cells Australia’s researchers in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.

The members of Stem Cells Australia’s Scientific Advisory Committee are:

Professor Christine Mummery - expert in heart development and the differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells into cardiac and vascular lineages. Particular interest in developing disease models for drug discovery. She is Professor and Chair of Developmental Biology at Leiden University Medical Centre in the Netherlands; serves on several Ethical Councils and Scientific Advisory and Editorial Boards. She is on the board of ISSCR, president of the International Society of Differentiation and an elected member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Science.

Professor Andras Nagy - renowned stem cell biologist, developmental molecular geneticist and Senior Investigator at the Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute in Canada. He is a Professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the University of Toronto, and holds a Canada Research Chair in Stem Cells and Regeneration. He is a member of the Standards Committee for the International Society for Stem Cell Research and an editorial board member of Stem Cell Reviews and Genesis.

Professor Shin-Ichi Nishikawa - expert in the molecular and cellular mechanisms governing the development of haematopoietic stem cells. He is Group Director for the Laboratory of Stem Cell Biology at the RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology, Kobe, Japan. He is on the editorial board for Development and Cell Stem Cell and a member of Advisory Councils to Welcome Trust Centre for Stem Cell Research (Cambridge, UK) and Institute for Frontier Medical Science (Kyoto University, Japan).

Professor Michael Rudnicki - expert in the molecular mechanisms that regulate the determination, proliferation, and differentiation of stem cells during muscle regeneration. He has used cell and molecular, genetic genomic and proteomic approaches to advance our knowledge of the molecular regulation of stem cell function. He is the Director of the Regenerative Medicine Program and the Sprott Centre for Stem Cell Research at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute in Canada; Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Ottawa and the Scientific Director of the Canadian Stem Cell Network and the International Regulome Consortium.

Professor Patrick Tam - expert in cellular and molecular mechanisms of body patterning during development and the biology of epiblast stem cells. He is the Deputy Director of Children’s Medical Research Institute, Sydney; Professor in the Discipline of Medicine, Sydney Medical School of the University of Sydney and Mok Hing-Yiu Distinguished Visiting Professor at the University of Hong Kong. He serves on the Scientific Advisory Board of the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics in Berlin Germany; Genome Institute of Singapore; RIKEN Centre for Developmental Biology in Kobe Japan, and Cold Spring Harbor Asia Conferences.

Professor Peter Zandstra - expert in the integration of engineering and biological approaches to develop new ways to grow and differentiate adult and embryonic stem cells in clinically and industrially relevant numbers. He is Professor of Tissue Engineering at the Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering, University of Toronto in Canada and holds patents in bioreactor technologies, with direct applications of this work for tissue and cellular engineering, gene therapy, and organ transplantation. He is a member of the McEwen Centre for Regenerative Medicine and the Heart and Stroke/Richard Lewar Centre of Excellence, and currently acts as Chief Scientific Officer for the Centre for the Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine.

For more information contact:

A/Prof Megan Munsie: 0417 585 621

About Stem Cells Australia:

Stem Cells Australia brings together Australia’s leading experts in bioengineering, nanotechnology, stem cell biology, advanced molecular analysis and clinical research. Led by Professor Martin Pera, Chair of Stem Cell Science at the University of Melbourne, the initiative explores the fundamental mechanisms involved in stem cell regulation and differentiation, and aims to translate this knowledge into innovative biotechnological and therapeutic applications. This Australian Research Council funded collaboration will also foster public debate about the important ethical, legal and societal issues associated with stem cell science.

Stem Cells Australia has been established by the University of Melbourne, University of Queensland, Monash University, University of NSW, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute for Medical Research, Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute, Florey Neuroscience Institutes and CSIRO. 

To find out more about Stem Cells Australia go to: