Archive for Uncategorized

Joint publication in Vietnam Journal of Chemistry

Congratulation to the team at the Microfabrication Laboratory and Pilot Plant Center for the publication of the article “Possible detection of antibiotic residue using molecularly imprinted polyaniline-based sensor” in the Vietnam Journal of Chemistry.

Congratulation to Tyron for his paper in ACS Nano

Congrats to Tyron and Ivan for the acceptance of the manuscript “Cross-Correlative Single-Cell Analysis Reveals Biological Mechanisms of Nanoparticle Radiosensitization” in ACS Nano. The article is online here.


Nanoparticle radiosensitization has been well demonstrated to enhance effects of radiotherapy, motivated to improve therapeutic ratios and decrease morbidity in cancer treatment. A significant challenge exists in optimizing formulations and translation due to insufficient knowledge of the associated mechanisms which have historically been limited to physical concepts. Here we investigated a concept for the role of biological mechanisms. The mere presence of gold nanoparticles lead to a down regulation of thymidylate synthase, important for DNA damage repair in the radioresistant S phase cells. By developing a cross-correlative methodology to reveal probabilistic gold nanoparticle uptake by cell sub-populations and the associated sensitization as a function of the uptake, a number of revealing observations have been achieved. Surprisingly, for low numbers of nanoparticles a desensitization action was observed. Sensitization was discovered to preferentially impact S phase cells where impairment of the DNA damage response by the homologous recombination pathway dominates. This small but radioresistant cell population correlates with much greater proliferative ability. Thus a paradigm is presented whereby enhanced DNA damage is not necessarily due to an increase in the number of DNA Double Strand Breaks (DSBs) created, but can be from a nanoparticle-induced impairment of the damage response by down regulating repair proteins such as thymidylate synthase.

Marnie short-listed for an Early Career Grant from the Trasher Foundation

Congratulation to  Marnie for being short-listed for a  prestigious ECR grant from the Trasher Research Fund. Only about 25% of applications are invited to submit a full application so well done. Fingers crossed for the next step.

The purpose of the Trasher Fund is to provide grants for clinical, hypothesis-driven research that offers substantial promise for meaningful advances in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of children’s diseases, particularly research that offers broad-based applications.


Uptake of Ceramisphere nanoparticles in intestine-on-chip to be published in Biomaterials Science

Congratulation to Kyall and Ludivine for the acceptance of their article ‘Uptake of silica particulate drug carriers in an intestine-on-a-chip: Towards a better in vitro model of nanoparticulate carriers and mucus interactions ‘ in RSC Biomaterials Science.

This manuscript  reports on the application of an intestinal epithelium microfluidic model to investigate the role of mucus in the uptake of particulate carriers by intestinal tissues. Two follow-up manuscripts are under review/in preparation so stay tuned.

Vasculature-on-chip & radiobiology article in Advanced Materials Technologies attract media coverage

Congratulation to Zhaobin and Chih-Tsung for the acceptation of their manuscript ‘Validation of a Vasculogenesis Microfluidic Model for Radiobiological Studies of the Human Microvasculature‘ in Advanced Materials Technologies. This work is a collaboration with the Royal Adelaide Hospital, the UTS and the Dana-Farber Cancer Research Institute at Harvard Medical School.

This research has attracted the attention of  several  media outlets such as ‘Microfluidic chip could reduce radiotherapy side effects‘ in PhysOrg.



PCT patent filed for NIPDx fetal cell based NIPT

Great new – The IP underpinning NIPDx Pty Ltd has progressed t the PCT phase with the support of UniSA Ventures.

NIPDx is a spin-off company aimed at developing a next generation NIPT technology based on circulating fetal cells isolated from maternal blood. The need for better and more reliable NIPT has been recently illustrated in this article by the BBC UK:

‘I nearly aborted my baby because of an unreliable test’ – read the full article here.

Welcome and congratulations to Nghia

Congratulation to Nghia who has been awarded a “top-up” PhD scholarship from  Healthy Development Adelaide. He will start his PhD working closely with Marnie Winter on non-invasive prenatal testing.


RTIS grant to support collaboration with Harvard University

The grant is entitled “Bioengineered organs-on-chip models: A new approach to investigate the radiobiological effects of cancer radiotherapy ” and is funded under the Cancer Research theme of the University of South Australia.

This project will demonstrate the feasibility of using bioengineered “organs-on-chip” models to obtain quantitative radiobiological insights and accelerate  the establishment of new research links with Prof Harald Paganetti (Radiation Oncology, Harvard University) and Dr Amir Aref (Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard University) as well as with the French Biotech company Cherry Biotech.

Review article on Cell-based NIPT published in Trends in Biotechnology

Well done to Marnie, Meysam and all other co-authors for the publication of our review article  “A Reappraisal of Circulating Fetal Cell Noninvasive Prenatal Testing” in Trends in Biotechnology.

Figure 1

Abstract: New tools for higher-resolution fetal genome analysis including microarray and next-generation sequencing have revolutionized prenatal screening. This article provides commentary on this rapidly advancing field and a future perspective emphasizing circulating fetal cell (CFC) utility. Despite the tremendous technological challenges associated with their reliable and cost-effective isolation from maternal blood, CFCs have a strong potential to bridge the gap between the diagnostic sensitivity of invasive procedures and the desirable noninvasive nature of cell-free fetal DNA (cffDNA). Considering the rapid advances in both rare cell isolation and low-input DNA analysis, we argue here that CFC-based noninvasive prenatal testing is poised to be implemented clinically in the near future.

CBNS Roadshow at Unley High School

Congratulation to all the CBNS team for putting together a very successful event at Unley High School as part f the 2018 CBNS Roadshow. The event featured talks by Clive, Benjamin, Michelle, Duy and Chelsea as well as hands-on activities. The VR “Journey to the Centre of the Cell” featured on Channel 9. You can watch it here.