Phenomics appointments to advance precision medicine

June 8, 2018

Close up of samples

WA collaboration: Murdoch is leading a consortium of WA universities and research institutes to establish an international centre of excellence in phenomics

Murdoch University welcomes the appointment of Professor Elaine Holmes as the Premier’s Science Fellow.

We also welcome Dr Ruey Leng Loo who has been appointed as the Premier’s Early to Mid-Career Fellow.  She will support Professor Holmes’ research and undertake complimentary research in personalised nutrition and health. Both appointments are made in collaboration with Edith Cowan University.

Professor Holmes is an internationally-distinguished computational medical researcher who is currently based at Imperial College London. She is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Science and an Honorary Fellow of the Metabolomics Society.

Dr Loo, originally a pharmacist, completed a PhD at Imperial College and currently is senior lecturer at the University of Kent.

Both colleagues will undertake research on metabolic phenotyping in large cohort studies to improve healthcare.

Metabolic phenotyping uncovers the interaction of genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors contributing to the development of disease.

Both appointments provide an important foundation for establishing an international centre of excellence in phenomics in WA.  Led by Murdoch University, the centre will be a major platform of the West Australian Health Translation Network which is a collaboration between all of WA’s universities, several medical research institutes and hospitals.

Professor Holmes’ particular expertise spans maternal and infant health, liver and gastrointestinal diseases, metabolic diseases and dementia.  Both appointments are due to begin in January 2019.

Murdoch University Vice Chancellor Professor Eeva Leinonen said: “Murdoch University is proud to be leading this collaborative initiative bringing together world-leading expertise in this sophisticated biological analysis technology.

“Metabolic phenotyping research can be a global game-changer for health and medical research, with the potential to revolutionise the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of disease and the development of tailored treatment in individual cases and across populations.”

The State Government is supporting the appointments with a $1.5 million investment over four years, which is being matched jointly by Murdoch University and ECU.

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