ANU medical researcher nationally recognised

14 October 2015

Immunologist Professor Carola Vinuesa has been recognised for excellence in medical research.

Professor Vinuesa, who is Head of the Department of Immunology and Infectious Disease at The John Curtin School of Medical Research (JCSMR), has received the 2015 Ramaciotti Medal for Excellence in Biomedical Research.

The award honours Professor Vinuesa's work in antibody responses and the discovery of genes and pathways that prevent autoimmune diseases, which has opened up new avenues to diagnosis and treatment.

"I feel honoured. It is nice to know the community and our peers appreciate the work that we do and that people think that what we do is useful," she said.

"This award is recognition not of me alone but of my whole team. I've been very fortunate as I think I've got a really incredible international team that work very hard and are very motivated and extremely bright."

The Ramaciotti Foundations are one of Australia's largest private contributors to biomedical research in Australia. The Foundations were set up in 1970 by siblings Clive and Vera Ramaciotti.

In 2014, ANU launched the Centre for Personalised Immunology headed up by Professor Vinuesa and Professor Matthew Cook.

Professor Vinuesa said the award will support research into the development of personalised medicine based on an individual's genetic makeup.

The annual award, which carries a research prize of $50,000, was announced at a ceremony on Tuesday 13 October in Melbourne.

Professor Vinuesa is the third ANU academic to receive this award after Professor Chris Parish and Professor Chris Goodnow.

"It's humbling to be recognised in the same company as both these scientists who are giants in immunology, and the other past recipients," she said.

JCSMR Director Professor Simon Foote congratulated Professor Vinuesa on the award.

"Professor Vinuesa is an exceptional research scientist, and a truly worthy recipient of this prestigious award," Professor Foote said.