Our Research Fellows

Externally Funded Research Fellows

Dr John Arnold
Early Career Research Fellow - Defining treatment targets to optimise the management of early midfoot osteoarthritis

Dr John Arnold is a Research Fellow working with the Institute of Rheumatic and Musculoskeletal Medicine/NIHR Biomedical Research Centre in Leeds (UK), and ARENA. He was a recipient of a 2016 Tall Poppy Science Award. John has clinical and research expertise in biomechanics and musculoskeletal disorders, spanning clinical and laboratory-based studies to involvement in epidemiological analyses and systematic reviews.

Dr Kerri Beckmann
Early Career Research Fellow - Who to treat, when to treat and how to treat prostrate cancer: Generating evidence to guide prostrate cancer treatment decisions

Dr Kerri Beckmann is a cancer epidemiologist with an interest in the early detection and treatment of breast, prostate and colorectal cancer.  She is employed at the University of South Australia as a research fellow in the Cancer Epidemiology and Population Health Research Unit.

Professor Alex Brown
Research Fellowship - Understanding and overcoming cardiovascular and diabetes inequalities in Indigenous Australians

An Indigenous doctor who believes improving the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is a moral, ethical and cultural obligation, Professor Alex Brown is a world recognised leader in Indigenous health. Alex has spent the last six years developing a research program focusing on chronic conditions which contribute to the 17-year life expectancy gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. SAHMRI research overview.

Associate Professor Kristin Chahhoud
Early Career Fellowship:  iSNAP (interactive Smoking, Nutrition, Alcohol and Physical activity) program for youth

A/Prof Carson-Chahhoud has received many titles including: Young Australian of the Year for SA, Premier’s Channel 9 Young Achiever of the Year, Young Citizen of the Year and named One of Australia's 100 Women of Influence.  She has held consecutive NHMRC fellowships, produced over 60 peer-reviewed publications, co-authored over 100 conference abstracts, received over two dozen research awards and received $4.48 million in competitive research funding, despite only completing her PhD in December 2015 (obtaining the Dean's Commendation for Doctoral Thesis Excellence).

Professor Peter Clifton
Principal Research Fellowship - Effect of dairy and red meat on glucose control

Professor Peter Clifton is Professor of Nutrition with the School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences with research interests in nurition, obesity, lipids and type 2 diabetes prevention and treatment. Peter co-leads the Diet and Health research program in the Sansom's Public Health research group.

Professor Leanne Dibbens
Research Fellowship - Identifying the Genetic Causes of Epilepsy

An internationally regarded geneticist specialising in epilepsy Professor Leanne Dibbens has been a key driver in a number of world firsts, including the discovery of a mutated gene that causes epilepsy and intellectual disability in women. Formally a researcher at the Department of Genetic Medicine at the Women's and Children's Hospital, Leanne now heads the Epilepsy Genetics Research Group.

Dr Kate Fennell
Churchill Fellowship - Investigate sustainable methods of imrpoving the health and well-being of rural cancer survivors

Dr Fennell works as a Research Fellow in the Sansom Institute at the University of South Australia. She carries out both qualitative and quantitative research in psycho-oncology, rural health and rural mental health and has clinical experience working as a psychologist with people affected by cancer. In 2017, Kate was the recipient of a South Australian Tall Poppy science communication award

Dr Brenton Hordacre
Early Career Research Fellow - Characterising motor network connectivity to improve appliccation of non-invasive brain stimulation in stroke

Dr Brenton Hordacre is an NHMRC Early Career Research Fellow working with the Body in Mind Research group. His research is focused on understanding and improving stroke recovery. Brenton continues to maintain a clinical position at the Repatriation General Hospital as a Senior Physiotherapist

Dr Kylie Johnstone
Churchill Fellowship - To learn new methods to manage chronic breathlessness using non-drug interventions

Dr Kylie Johnston currently teaches and supervises students within the School of Health Sciences as Senior Lecturer in Cardiopulmonary Physiotherapy, and her research is conducted within the Sansom Institute for Health Research.

Dr Lisa Kalisch Ellett
ARC Dementia Research Development Fellowship - Associated dementia and gognitive impairment: identifying the problem, reducing the harm

A NHMRC-ARC Dementia Research Development Fellow in the Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre, Dr Lisa Kalisch is a pharmacist whose PhD research explored the extent of brand substitution for government-subsidised medicines in Australia. Her research interests include pharmaceutical policy, pharmacoepidemiology and generic medicines and brand substitution.

Associate Professor Carol Maher
Career Development Fellowship - Using online social technologies to improve health behaviour

An associate research fellow at the Sansom’s Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA) group, Ass Professor Carol Maher worked as a paediatric physiotherapist before moving into research. She is currently a NHMRC Career Development Fellow and prior to this, was a National Heart Foundation Fellow and Australian Research Council Fellow.  Her research interests include children’s activity patterns, interventions to improve health behaviours in children and adults, and physical activities for people with disabilities. In 2013 she was awarded a South Australian Tall Poppy Science Award for her work focusing on the impact of everyday activities such as sleep, physical activity and watching television on health and wellbeing.

Professor Janna Morrison
Future Fellowship - Normal heart development before birth

An accomplished researcher in the field of fetal development, Professor Janna Morrison is a Heart Foundation and NHMRC Career Development Award Research Fellow, and head of the Sansom Institute's Early Origins of Adult Health Research Group. Janna received a South Australian Tall Poppy Science Award in 2006, in recognition of her work examining the link between low birth weight and heart disease in adulthood. 

Professor Lorimer Moseley
Research Fellowship - The role of the brain and mind in chronic pain

Professor of Clinical Neurosciences and Chair in Physiotherapy at the Sansom Institute, Professor Lorimer Moseley is a clinical scientist investigating pain in humans and leads the Body in Mind research concentration group. Lorimer has published more than 100 papers, three books and several book chapters, and consults to governmental and industry bodies around the world on pain-related issues. In 2008 he was named the outstanding mid-career clinical scientist working in a pain-related field by the International Association for the Study of Pain. In 2012 he won the NHMRC's Marshall Warren Award, which recognises the best, highly innovative and potentially transformative grant-funded project in Australia.

Dr Tuan Nguyen
ARC Dementia Research Development Fellowship - Development of a unified list of drugs associated with drug-induced cognitive impairment

Dr Tuan Nguyen is a Research Fellow in the Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre. His research interests include the development and implementation of National Medicines Policies in low- and middle-income countries, focusing on two issues: access to medicines and quality use of medicines.

Dr Stephanie Reuter Lange
Early Career Fellowship - Improving the treatment of infectious diseases

A Postdoctoral Research Fellow with the School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences, Dr Stephanie Reuter-Lange is a pharmacokinetics expert with more than 13 years experience in coordinating and managing clinical trials. In 2013 Stephanie conducted her research in the United States as a Fulbright scholar and also received the SA Science Excellence Award for PhD Research Excellence for Health and Medical Sciences.

Professor Michael Roberts
Senior Principal Research Fellowship - Improving therapeutic and toxicological outcomes

An internationally-recognised scientist who serves on numerous national health advisory committees, Professor Michael Roberts leads a wide range of cutting edge medical research as an NHMRC Senior Principal Research Fellow, and Professor of Therapeutics and Pharmaceutical Science at UniSA and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital. With more than 390 peer reviewed research publications to his name, Mike has four current NHMRC grants concerned with topical drug delivery, safety of nanotechnology, critical care medicine and therapeutics for liver disease, and is an investigator on the NHMRC Program Grant 'An integrated research program in human toxicology.' Mike leads the Therapeutics & Pharmaceutical Science research concentration group.

Professor David Roder
Senior Principal Research Fellow

Professor David Roder’s main focus is on research translation, including literature distillations, development of scientific position statements, and negotiations with policy makers at national and jurisdictional level, and less so, at an international level. David leads the Cancer Epidemiology research concentration group and sits on the NHMRC Council and is the Chair of the NHMRC Prevention and Community Health Committee since 2013.

Professor Libby Roughead
Research Fellowship - Using big data to imrove medication use and safety

A health systems scientist and pharmacoepidemiologist, Professor Libby Roughead is a NHMRC Senior Research Fellow at the Sansom Institute for Health Research and co-director of a national program that aims to improve the use of medicines by Australian veterans. A leader of the Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre, Libby's research interests include public policy concerning medicines, improving the use of medicines, and studies of the patterns of medication use and adverse drug events. 

Dr Ashleigh Smith
ARC Dementia Research Development Fellowship - Optimising exercise prescription for brain health in older adults at risk of dementia 

Dr Ashleigh Smith is a neurophysiologist interested in understanding the factors that influence the capacity of the human brain to reorganise its connectivity (neuroplasticity) with experience. Her key interests include how diet/nutrition, exercise and genetic factors influence the capacity of the human brain for neuroplasticity across the entire human lifespan. She is a member of the Alliance for Research in Exercise Nutrition and Activity (ARENA) research team.

Dr Tasha Stanton
Career Development and Endeavour Postdoctoral Research Fellowship - Improving pain and movement outcomes in symptomatic knee osteoarthritis

A Senior Research Fellow with the Body in Mind group, Dr Tasha Stanton has worked as a clinical physiotherapist before completing research degrees examining spinal biomechanics and lower back pain. She is currently a NHMRC Early Career Fellow.  Her current research is focussed on illuminating the neuroscience behind pain - how the brain processes information and how processing changes when pain is present. 

Dr Nicky Thomas
Early Career Fellowship - Structure and function of antimicrobial therapies and their interaction with upper respiratory biofilms

Dr Nicky Thomas is a Research Fellow at the School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences.  His global theme of research is to transform new and existing drugs into the nest medicines for patients.  Nicky is the founder and dead of Adelaide's firs Biofilm Test Facility, situated in the School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences.

Professor Shudong Wang
South Australian Cancer Council and SAHMRI
Beat Cancer Principal Research Fellowship

Professor Shudong Wang is Professor of Medicinal Chemistry in the School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences. Her research focuses on drug discovery in several therapeutic areas, especially cancer. Shudong is particularly interested in forging multidisciplinary approaches for drug discovery translational research in an academic environment and leads the Centre for Drug Discovery and Development research concentration group.

Professor Cory Xian
Senior Research Fellowship - Bone growth for healthy development: physiology, pathophysiology, and regeneration

An NHMRC Senior Research Fellow, and Professor of Bone Research, Professor Cory Xian has an international reputation for his work into the roles of growth factors in tissue repair, mechanisms of bone growth and regulation, growth plate injury and repair, and cancer chemotherapy-induced bone defects. Head of the Bone Growth and Repair Research Group, Cory is a member of numerous biomedical and clinical research professional societies and serves on funding body research committees and the editorial boards of various international scientific journals. 

Professor Xin-Fu Zhou
Senior Research Fellowship   

Professor Xin-Fu Zhou from the Sansom's Neuroscience group is investigating how neurotrophins and their receptors signal in the neurodegenerative disease such as Alzheimer's disease and spinal cord injury, and in developing methods to treat neurological diseases.

UniSA Supported

Dr Amy Baker

A research fellow within the Mental Health and Substance Use research group, Dr Baker works primarily on the Mental Health in Multicultural Australia (MHiMA) Project, which aims to provide a national focus on mental health and suicide prevention for people from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds. Dr Baker's work focuses on enhancing engagement of consumers and carers from CALD backgrounds and various activities related to community engagement. 

Professor Doug Brooks

With a research career spanning three decades, Professor Brooks is leader of the Mechanisms in Cell Biology of Disease research group at UniSA. He has particular expertise in immunochemistry, protein chemistry and cell biology, and is renowned for his work looking into lysosomal diseases - a group of over 50 genetic diseases predominantly affecting children.

Dr Gillian Caughey

A senior research fellow in the Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre, Dr Gillian Caughey's research focuses on the quality use of medicines and the care of older people with multiple chronic conditions (multimorbidity). She has a special interest in the development of Australian based clinical indicators of potentially preventable medicine-related hospitalisations, with the aim to reduce adverse events, improve health outcomes and standards of care.

Dr Neil Coffee

A senior research fellow with the Sansom’s Spatial Epidemiology and Evaluation group, Neil Coffee has extensive experience in developing and applying GIS (Geographic Information Systems) to a wide range of population, urban, social and health contexts. His current research examines the impact of the built environment on metabolic syndrome, cardio-metabolic risk, physical activity and walkability. 

Dr Nathan Daniell

Dr Nathan Daniell is a research fellow with the Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA) group with research interests in 3D body scanning which has applications in a range of fields including health and clinical medicine, sports sciences, ergonomics and human performance.

Dr Anna Dawson

With a background in physiotherapy, Dr Anna Dawson is also an Iyengar yoga teacher and a member of the Spatial Epidemiology and Evaluation group. Anna's research has included a focus on back pain in nurses, and recently she has been working on a collaboration to identify and address the underlying causes of smoking in Aboriginal Health Workers. 

Dr Chia-ming Fan

A postdoctoral research fellow in the Bone Growth and Repair research group, Dr Chia-ming Fan focuses on cancer chemotherapy-induced bone defects, investigating the underlying mechanisms of bone growth defects and the bone/bone marrow regeneration potential.

Dr Katia Ferrar

A postdoctoral research fellow in the Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA) group, Katia's current research is focused on perceptual responses to exercise and interventions to improve health outcomes for obese individuals.

Dr Gareth Furber

Gareth Furber is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Sansom’s Health Economics and Social Policy group, where his work centres around applying health economic principles to evaluating client outcomes in child and adolescent mental health services. A clinical psychologist with expertise in areas including eating disorders, oncology, drug and alcohol and child and adolescent mental health, he is also co-founder of the largest online social network of mental health professionals in South Australia.

Dr Svetla Gadzhanova

A Postdoctoral Research Fellow with a PhD in Health Informatics, Dr Gadzhanova is working on a joint research project between the Quality Use of Medicine and Pharmacy Research Centre and the National Prescribing Service. Her research interests include pharmacoepidemiology and quality use of medicines, data mining from electronic health records, and evaluating change management behaviour in primary health care.

Dr Marianne Gillam

Dr Marianne Gillam is a Research Fellow in Epidemiology: Data Science in the Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre

Dr Natasha Howard

With a background in social geography and public health, Dr Natasha Howard is a postdoctoral research fellow with the Sansom’s Spatial Epidemiology and Evaluation research group. Natasha currently contributes to NHMRC and ARC-funded projects that are shedding light on the relationship between cardiometabolic health and social, built and physical environments.

Dr Maria Inacio

Dr Maria Inacio is a Research Fellow in Epidemiology: Data Science in the Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre.

Dr Frankie Lam

Dr Frankie Lam is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in cancer cell biology in the Sansom's Centre for Drug Discovery and Development. Frankie's research aims to discover new drug leads for targeted cancer therapy which will provide safer and more effective treatments for cancer patients in the near future.

Dr Lucy Lewis

Dr Lucy Lewis is a physiotherapist and member of the Sansom’s Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA) group. Some of her recent research has investigated enjoyment in physical activity and the active cycle of breathing technique. 

Dr Ming Li

A Postdoctoral Research Fellow in chronic disease epidemiology in the Public Health research concentration, Ming is a chief investigator of a survey investigating overweight and obese adolescents and associated environmental and behaviour factors in China. Research interests include lifestyle and noncommunicable chronic diseases such as diabetes and metabolic syndrome, and physical activity and diet in children and adolescents. 

Dr Ha Nguyen

Dr Ha Nguyen is a research fellow in the Health Economics and Social Policy research group research interests are in the economic evaluations of health services, programs and interventions for improving health outcomes for Indigenous people and to explore the effectiveness and efficiency of the comprehensive primary health care model for Indigenous communities. His research interest has built from my diverse experience working with disadvantaged populations in Vietnam. 

Dr Natalie Parletta

With a background in psychology, Dr Natalie Parletta is well known for her research into omega-3 fatty acids, micronutrients and ADHD. She is currently working on an ARC Linkage grant-funded project examining the benefits of omega-3s in Indigenous children in remote communities. Natalie is also involved in projects that investigate parenting and other psychosocial factors associated with child and adolescent diets, and is broadly interested in early life influences on optimal child development.

Associate Professor Nicole Pratt

Dr Nicole Pratt is a Senior Research Fellow at the Sansom's Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre where she leads the evaluation of the Veterans’ Medicines Advice and Therapeutics Education Service (Veterans’ MATES) program. An experienced pharmacoepidemiologist, she is a member of the Therapeutic Goods Administration Advisory Committee on the Safety Of Medicines (ACSOM). 

Dr Kym Preiss

Dr Kym Preiss is an adjunct research fellow with the Sansom Institute’s Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre, where he applies his knowledge of programming and analysis to optimise the use of linked health data, particularly in the areas of comorbidities and data visualisation. Other interests include neural networks, computational and statistical modelling, and psychometric measuring methods in experimental psychology. 

Dr Susan Semple

A Senior Research Fellow with the Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre, Dr Susan Semple is involved in collaborative research projects with Indigenous communities examining the pharmacological activities of some traditional medicinal plants. Her research interests include antimicrobial activity of Australian Aboriginal medicinal plants, isolation and structural determination of biologically active compounds from plants, complementary medicine use in the community, information needs of consumers of complementary and alternative medicines, and medication safety. In 2013 Sue won a Business/Higher Education Round table (B-HERT) Award Honourable Mention for outstanding Achievement in Collaboration in Community Engagement for her Kuuku I'yu Northern Kaanju Medicinal Plants Project.

Dr Agnes Vitry

A Senior Research Fellow at the Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre, Dr Agnes Vitry has research interests including pharmaco-epidemiological studies, quality of information for health professionals and consumers, quality of drug promotion and impact on medicines use, medicines policy and regulation. She currently runs the Ageing Well Ageing Productively project, an ARC/NHMRC-funded project that aims to achieve better health outcomes for older Australians with common combinations of chronic conditions.

Dr Mingfeng Yu

A postdoctoral research fellow with the Centre for Drug Discovery and Development, Dr Mingfeng Yu is currently involved in the discovery and development of novel protein kinase inhibitors for cancer therapy.

Dr Song Zhang

Dr Song Zhang is an Adjunct Research Fellow with the Sansom’s Early Origins of Adult Health Research Group where she contributes to a range of research examining the mechanisms underlying the early programing of cardiovascular disease, metabolic health, and stress responsiveness in the offspring.  

Areas of study and research

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