31 July 2013

Researchers Dr Carol Maher and Dr Dominic Thewlis Four University of South Australia researchers have received South Australian Tall Poppy Awards at a ceremony held at Government House last night (July 30).

From developing a breath test to detect cancer to inventing lightweight, shatterproof plastic car mirrors using nanotechnology, the four researchers are working across the University to make a difference in the world.

UniSA’s Deputy Vice Chancellor and Vice President: Research and Innovation, Professor Richard Head says the achievements of UniSA’s early career researchers are a reflection of the high quality research being undertaken at the University. 

“Our Tall Poppy winners are a fine example of next generation academics undertaking world-class research at UniSA, and it is research that is having a real impact on people’s lives,” Prof Head says.

Researcher Dr Drew Evans “Not only will these four researchers play a leading role in the future of science in our University and in our state, they also serve as an inspiration to others.

“Although they are at the start of their careers, they have already made important contributions to their respective fields and are actively sharing their passion for science through engagement with the wider community.”

UniSA’s Tall Poppy winners:

Dr Carol Maher’s research focuses on the impact everyday activities such as sleep, physical activity and watching television have on our health and wellbeing. 

Dr Dominic Thewlis is working to develop a new treatment for osteoarthritis. Using biomechanics, he looks at how the joints of the body move to better understand the progression of the disease.  

Dr Drew Evans designs thin film coatings for common surfaces. He has created a plastic coating for a car mirror which is currently being adopted by car manufacturers around the globe.  

Researcher Dr Roger Yazbek  Dr Roger Yazbek is developing a fast, non-invasive breath test for the early detection of oesophageal cancer, which currently has very low survival rates due to late detection.

The Tall Poppy Campaign encourages public engagement in science and puts a spotlight on the innovative research taking place in South Australia, which is helping to shape the State’s future.

UniSA’s four Tall Poppy winners were among nine of South Australia’s brightest young researchers to be recognised at the Tall Poppy Awards ceremony.

The winner of the 2013 South Australian Tall Poppy of the Year will be announced on August 16.

Media Contact

Rosanna Galvin office (08) 8302 0578 mobile 0434 603 457 email rosanna.galvin@unisa.edu.au

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