Curtin University PhD student Elizabeth Grenik has been announced as the State winner in the AusBiotech and GlaxoSmithKline Student Excellence Awards, which support young, promising scientists and their research.
Ms Grenik’s research on regenerative tissues is showing potential as a gateway towards growing artificial organs and her modified ‘scaffold’ is already showing potential as a commercial product.
“My research is focused on the development of a modified scaffold that can be implanted in the body to repair, heal and regrow tissue that has been damaged or lost, such as skin or muscle,” Ms Grenik said.
Her research has investigated how biomaterials can interact with human cells and tissues, and with that knowledge she has developed a unique combination of materials that is successful in enhancing cell growth and attachment.
She hoped her recognition in the awards would encourage more students to pursue research and consider a career in bio-sciences.
Ms Grenik’s supervisor Associate Professor Xia Lou, in Curtin’s Department of Chemical Engineering, said her research would make an important contribution to understanding how human cells reacted with a material, which was a critical component in tissue regeneration.
AusBiotech is the national body dedicated to the development of the Australian biotechnology industry, and the awards aim to encourage more Australian young people to enter science.
The six state winners from across Australia will go to the AusBiotech 2012 conference in Melbourne from 30 October – 2 November 2012, where they will present their research and compete for the national title.
Ms Grenik will represent Western Australia by competing at the AusBiotech national conference in Melbourne later this month. The national winner will receive a $7,000 travel grant to be used to present their research at an international conference.
Elizabeth Grenik, PhD student, Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Science & Engineering, Curtin University
Tel: +61 8 9266 1021 Email: E.Grenik@curtin.edu.au