Flinders Medical Centre Foundation
Flinders Medical Centre Foundation


From Nobel Peace Prize winning lab to Flinders

Monday, 14 September 2015 14:44

A biomedical scientist from a Nobel Peace Prize winning lab in the United Kingdom is preparing to continue with her breakthrough research project at the Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer (FCIC).


Dr Janni Petersen made her first scientific breakthrough under prestigious company working alongside Nobel Laureate Sir Paul Nurse at the Rockefeller University in New York, studying the role of protein kinases in regulating cell cycle progression in fission yeast.


A Flinders Medical Centre (FMC) Foundation seed grant of $17,000 will allow Dr Petersen to continue her exploration into uncontrolled growth and proliferation of cancer cells, with the aim to better understand how the cell cycle is controlled and what goes wrong during tumour development.


“The space at FCIC attracted me because of its open plan policy where all teams share equipment, offices and laboratory space. I think that’s really productive for science, because it promotes interaction, which is really good for students,” Dr Petersen said.


According to Dr Petersen’s research, cancer cells inappropriately colonise parts of the body and are invariably more stressed than normal cells due to lacking normal nutrient supply. Therefore, not surprisingly, changes in stress response signalling are linked to cancer and are often altered in human tumours.


“My research began in Paul Nurse’s laboratory over a decade ago, where we discovered that Target of Rapamycin (TOR) signalling pathway controls mitosis (cell cycle process) and that the decision made by cells to divide is also made by the TOR pathway.”


“Currently, I’m moving further on in the pathway, to try and understand how nitrogen is regulating the decision of the TOR pathway to control mitosis and cell division. Basically we’re going further away from the actual enzyme that is the key switch of cell division by trying to understand how it itself is regulated, but it’s all connected with what I originally worked on with Paul Nurse.”


“We want to investigate what makes cancer cells different from other normal cells. We can then specifically target cancer cells, rather than all cells in the body, because a lot of the problems with cancer drugs is that they have a huge effect on all cells in the body and in the end cancer cells are our own cells, just slightly different.”


Dr Petersen has been appointed to Flinders University as an Associate Professor along with a Faculty appointment at the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) as part of the Nutrition and Metabolism theme.


You make me want to shout! Campbell to bring 80’s hits to gala ball

Wednesday, 12 August 2015 15:20

Much-loved television personality and entertainer Tim Campbell is set to headline the Flinders Medical Centre (FMC) Foundation’s 2015pinkyellowblueball on Saturday 24 October, proudly supported by principal partner Flinders University.

The charismatic Campbell, former television star of Home & Away, House Husbands and Dancing with the Stars, will perform 80’s hits from his debut album High School Disco for more than 600 guests.

After 26 years, the pinkyellowblueball remains South Australia’s most prestigious cancer research fundraiser, with all money raised on the night supporting vital cancer research at Flinders Medical Centre.

Thanks to the pinkyellowblueball, the FMC Foundation has been able to fund cancer research projects at the Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer which combines patient care, services and research, which have proven to be essential for breakthroughs into how to best prevent, cure and care.

Guests will also be treated to the finest South Australian wine and cuisine.


Always a night to remember, last year’s pinkyellowblueball raised $210,000 for cancer research.


A sporty Toyota Yaris kindly donated by ongoing supporters Toyota Motors, will be one of the many great prizes on the night, as well as Main and Silent Auction items.

For bookings or more information call the FMC Foundation on (08) 8204 5216 or purchase your tickets online at www.teamflinders.com.au/2014pinkyellowblueball


Running for Research

Tuesday, 28 July 2015 11:06

Flinders Medical Centre (FMC) researcher Damian Hussey will run the Adelaide Marathon next month to raise funds for the FMC Foundation.

On 23 August Damian will run the 42.2km course for the second time, starting and finishing at Adelaide Oval and covering much of the city and North Adelaide.


Together with his colleagues at the Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer, Damian is currently working on methods for early detection of oesophageal adenocarcinoma, so as to allow early intervention and improve prognosis.

He hopes his love of running will help raise funds to continue cancer research.


“Cancer touches all of us and it has touched my family more than once,” Damian says.


“I hope that the work we do here at Flinders will make a difference, both in terms of improved early detection of cancer and improved treatment options for patients with cancer.”

”Damian says he is hoping to “substantially improve” the time he posted in last year’s marathon and has asked his colleagues to donate to the FMC Foundation in support.


“I promise I’ll honour your donation in sweat and in hard work - both in the marathon and in my daily endeavours to advance cancer research here at Flinders.


Donations can be made online at the Team Flinders fundraising site or via tins located in the Department of Surgery Office Room 3D211 or at EFM Bedford Park and EFM Noarlunga.


Spicy treatment for aggressive cancer

Thursday, 23 July 2015 10:01

It's been treasured by food lovers for thousands of years for its rich golden colour, peppery flavour and mustardy aroma...and now turmeric may also have a role in fighting cancer.

Researchers at Flinders are investigating whether an active ingredient of the turmeric plant, called curcumin, can be used alone or in conjunction with standard therapies to treat malignant mesothelioma, an aggressive cancer caused by the inhalation of asbestos.


Malignant mesothelioma is a tumour of the thin membranes that surround the lungs, heart and abdominal organs. Currently there is no effective treatment for the cancer.


"Standard chemotherapy shows only limited success is not guaranteed," explained lead researcher Associate Professor Sonja Klebe from the Department of  Anatomical Pathology at Flinders Medical Centre.


To find out more about the role of turmeric in fighting cancer, click here.


Proud to go dry this July

Monday, 29 June 2015 16:16

Southern Adelaide Local Health Network (SALHN) Chief Executive Officer, Belinda Moyes has signed up to Dry July, to raise money for the Flinders Medical Centre (FMC) Foundation.


For a second year, the Flinders Medical Centre (FMC) Foundation has been chosen as a beneficiary of proceeds from Dry July – an initiative that encourages people to raise money to support adults living with cancer by going booze-free for the month of July.


More than 2,300 cancer patients are admitted to FMC, every year, while almost 600 cancer clinics and 650 chemotherapy treatments are scheduled every month at the hospital’s Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer (FCIC).


SALHN CEO Professor Belinda Moyes will be among hundreds of DJ’s (‘Dry July-ers’) giving up alcohol and raising funds for cancer services and care at FMC.


“The ripple effect of cancer is significant. While we provide the very latest in treatment here at Flinders, we know that receiving cancer treatment can be a difficult time for patients and their loved ones. It is our vision to provide a comfortable environment for treatment, that is supportive and which will make a real difference in recovery,” said Professor Moyes.


I’m excited to challenge myself and raise funds for the Flinders Medical Centre Foundation at the same time,” she said.


“I encourage all staff to sign up and clear their heads this July for a great cause.”


DJ’s across South Australia contributed over $100,000 last year alone to FMC. Since its inception, the FMC Foundation has supported a team of more than 3,500 medical staff and 400 medical researchers at FMC who save lives every day.



The FMC Foundation hopes to raise much-needed funds to improve the overall health outcomes of cancer patients through programs such as oncology massage, an upgrade of Ward5G and survivorship services.



It is hoped that many DJs will choose the FMC Foundation as their beneficiary and help raise funds to grow and develop cancer services at the hospital.



To join Belinda Moyes, sign up to go Dry for July at https://au.dryjuly.com/. Support the FMC Foundation – and make a real difference!


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