HDR Candidates

Adele Cave

Effectiveness of a herbal and nutritional supplement on cognitive function in older adults with subjective cognitive complaints.

This PhD project will test the efficacy of a herbal and nutritional supplement on cognition, mood, fatigue, electrophysiology and autonomic function in a sample of older adults who report subjective cognitive complaints.

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Ahmad Al-Khazaleh

Gut microbial metabolites against lymphoma: the mechanisms of action and the interactions with standard chemotherapy.

This PhD project will investigate the role of gut microbiota and gut microbial metabolites (GMM) in lymphoma and their potential therapeutic applications.

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Ali Butt

Exploring the select efficacy of sailuotong (SLT) constituents and metabolites in people with mild cognitive impairment.

This MRes project aims to establish and optimise a method to quantify SLT marker compounds and metabolites in plasma and to assess any association of these concentrations with clinical outcomes.

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Alison Maunder

The role of naturopathy in the management of women with diminished ovarian reserve (DOR).

This PhD project will investigate the use of naturopaths by women with DOR and their experiences, the treatment patterns of naturopaths in their management of women with DOR, and finally, the effectiveness and safety of a naturopathic treatment option for women with DOR. Alison is a recipient of the NICM HRI and Jacka Foundation of Natural Therapies Scholarship Program.

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Andrew Proudfoot

Endometriosis and Endocannabinoid System Modulation: optimizing cannabinoid medicine in an insurance medicine context for Australian patients.

This MPhil project aims to examine, survey and understand the current experience and potential barriers to life, disability and trauma insurance access for women with endometriosis managing their disease both with and without cannabis.

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Christine Murray

A clinical trial of a herbal medicine for the management of osteoarthritis of the knee.

This PhD project will clinically evaluate the safety and effectiveness of a novel standardised herbal formulation in reducing pain from osteoarthitis of the knee. The study will involve a 12-week randomised, double-blind, placebo controlled trial. Christine is a recipient of the NICM HRI and Blackmores Institute Scholarship Program.

Danielle Howe

Endometriosis in Australian workplaces: understanding the impacts on productivity, wellbeing, and workplace menstrual stigma.

This PhD project aims to evaluate Endometriosis at work employer guidelines and will explore relationships between employee and employer outcomes (e.g. productivity, absenteeism, work-related stress, wellbeing, relationships, etc.) and employers’ motivations and drivers for implementing and embedding these guidelines.

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Dhevaksha Naidoo

The effects of residential health and wellness retreat experiences on health and wellbeing.

This PhD project aims to evaluate what measurable impact virtual retreat programs might have on resilience and coping during periods of crisis.

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Dongzheng Liu

Study on Frontier Technologies and Applications in Plant-Derived Extracellular Vesicles

This project aims to investigate Australia's native plant-derived EVs using cutting-edge technologies and understand their properties and potential biomedical applications.

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Donna Ciccia

Indigenous Peoples experience and understanding of menstrual health.

This MRes project aims to identify the extent and range of evidence of menstrual health literacy in First Nations People in the higher-income countries of Australia, Canada, and New Zealand.

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Emma Wong

Acupuncture to reduce treatment side effects and improve Quality of life for people who are undergoing or completed treatment for prostate cancer.

Electroacupuncture for recovery of sexual function after robotic assisted radical prostatectomy: A randomised controlled trial and feasibility study. 

This research investigates how Acupuncture and Electro Acupuncture can be used to alleviate treatment side effects for people with localised and advanced prostate cancer. Emma is a recipient of the NICM HRI and Blackmores Institute Scholarship Program.

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Fiona Hargraves

Lifestyle medicine for mental health.

This PhD project will investigate whether active virtual reality gaming can increase motivation and engagement in Physical Activity as a mental health promotion strategy. Fiona is a recipient of the NICM HRI and Blackmores Institute Scholarship Program.

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Gabriela Caballero 

Gabriela Caballero

Dementia Friends Unite! A community co-produced multilingual dementia education initiative

This study aims to co-produce and evaluate the impact and feasibility of a multilingual dementia education initiative with and for multicultural communities and related workforces.

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Indeewarie Dissanayake

The in vitro antiproliferative activity and mechanism of action of five selected Australian native fruits against the MCF7 breast adenocarcinoma cells.

This MRes project aims to investigate five Australian native fruits- Illawarra Plum, Kakadu Plum, native currant, lemon aspen, and Davidson’s plum, for their potential in vitro activity against the MCF7 breast adenocarcinoma cells.

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Joelle Metri

Novel Mechanisms of Neuroplasticity in Alzheimer's Disease

The overarching aim of this PhD project is to characterise novel mechanisms for neuroplasticity for people with Alzheimer's disease (AD).

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Justin Sinclair

The safety, tolerability and effectiveness of medicinal cannabis for the symptomatic management of endometriosis: A mixed methods study.

Endometriosis is a chronic inflammatory condition that impacts 1 in 10 women, with an estimated prevalence of 750,000 women in Australia and approximately 176 million women worldwide. With no known cure, this PhD aims to investigate a standardised and quality assured medicinal cannabis product for endometriosis pain and associated symptoms. Justin is a recipient of the NICM HRI Scholarship Program.

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Katerina Christofides

Exploring the neurochemistry of cognitive decline in mild cognitive impairment.

This PhD project aims to decipher the complex link between brain chemical imbalance, inflammation, and cognitive function in mild cognitive impairment.

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Kayla Jaye

Harnessing the power of postbiotics against breast cancer mechanistic insights using live cell imaging, proteomics and microRNA analyses.

The present study aims to identify molecular pathways and mechanisms of action of key gut microbial metabolites in the treatment of breast cancer, as well as minimal residual disease (MRD).

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Ki Kyung Kwon

Acupuncture for treating a symptom cluster (pain, fatigue, sleep, neuropathy) for women with breast cancer: a feasibility study.

This MRes study will examine the feasibility of acupuncture for women with breast cancer, and investigate potential relationships between the symptom cluster (pain, fatigue, sleep, neuropathy) and traditional Chinese medicine.

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Kiran Shahbaz

Pharmacological investigation of crocin in ischemic stroke via human astrocytic signalling pathways and mechanisms.

This PhD project aims to investigate the mechanism of action and therapeutic potential of crocin.

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Kirandeep Kaur

Modification of curcumin and investigation of its bioactivity.

This PhD project aims to assess the solubility  bioactivity (antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anticancer) and molecular mechanism of action of the modified curcumin.

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Kirti Sharma

Investigating the Antioxidant, Anti-Inflammatory and Skin Protective Properties of Australian Native Plants: Synergies and Mechanisms

This PhD project has two main goals. First, it aims create the foundation for new health products made from Australian Native Plants (ANP). Secondly, this study aims to generate scientific evidence supporting the traditional use of ANP, bridging the gap between traditional knowledge and modern science. Furthermore, this synergistic formulation presents a unique combination of ANP, offering potential benefits for various medical conditions through their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities.

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Maria Gonzalez

Evaluation of a yoga intervention on mental health in cancer patients.

Mental health issues in people diagnosed with cancer are prevalent and can cause serious consequences in those affected. This PhD project aims to assess the effects of a yoga program on mental health symptoms and associated health measures such as quality of life.

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Pragna Gaur

Historical and Cross-cultural lead chemical investigation of plants used for mental resilience and well-being.

The PhD project aims to investigate cross-cultural patterns between traditional plants' knowledge of Aboriginal culture and Indian tribes for strengthening mental resilience.

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Radwa Eladwy

Harnessing the power of gut microbiota for anticancer therapy: a continuum of gut microbiota and cancer

This PhD project will investigate GMMs in vitro for their anticancer activity, attributing molecular actions and potential synergy. In addition, to the synergistic combinations of GMMs with standard immunotherapeutic or chemotherapeutic drugs against cancer cell lines will also be assessed.

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Ryan Childs

Gender differences and biomarkers of mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease.

This MPhil project aims to investigate how gender differences influence the relationship of inflammatory markers, event related potentials, and cognition, in individuals with mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease.

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Sam Jeffrey

Barriers to care for transgender and gender diverse people with endometriosis; gaps in Australian health care provider curriculum.

This MPhil project will investigate the current inclusion of transgender and gender diverse (TGD) health content in medical and complementary alternative medicine (CAM) school curriculum.

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Seungeon Yeon

The effect and mechanisms of natural products on vascular calcification in vitro and in vivo.

This PhD project aims to establish in vitro and in vivo models of vascular calcification to investigate the possible role of sclerostin on vascular development and progression.

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Shayal Devi

Exploring the role of gut microbiota in the pharmacological effects of cholesterol health on controlling blood cholesterol and the risk of metabolic syndrome.

This PhD project aims to investigate through preclinical methods the effect of a plant-based supplement on gut microbiota as a potential target for metabolic syndrome, with a focus on diabetes. Shayal is a recipient of the NICM HRI and Blackmores Institute Scholarship Program.

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Shintu Mathew

Discovery of novel anti-inflammatory compounds from Australian Indigenous plants.

This PhD project aims to discover novel anti-inflammatory compounds from these Indigenous plants using bioactivity-guided purification and modern chemical analysis. Shintu is a recipient of the NICM HRI Scholarship Program.

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Vibhuti Rao

The role of Ayurveda and yoga in managing polycystic ovary syndrome in ethnic Indian women; a mixed-method study.

This PhD project will examine a combined lifestyle intervention including Ayurvedic diet and yoga to manage symptoms of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS).

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Vicky Liu

Development of a novel herbal compound-formula targeting neuroinflammation.

This MRes project will investigate a novel herbal formulation to reduce neuroinflammation, protect endothelial barrier and enhance neuronal survival of cells exposed to extracellular neuroinflammatory stimuli.

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Zechariah Marting

Phytochemical profiling and pharmacological studies of Australian grown Vernonia amygdalina Delile (family Asteraceae).

This PhD project will evaluate the pharmacognostic, phytochemical and pharmacological value of Vernonia amygdalina Delile for the effective prevention and management of diabetes mellitus.

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