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New Curtin scholarship to help improve outlook for liver cancer patients

Media release

Curtin University and the Lions Cancer Institute Inc. have announced a new PhD scholarship that aims to improve the outcomes of people living with liver cancer around the world.

The Lions-Lotus PhD Scholarship has been fully funded by the Lions Cancer Institute and will be based in the Curtin Health Innovation Research Institute (CHIRI) at Curtin University.

The scholarship recipient, who will be supervised by Associate Professor Nina Tirnitz-Parker from CHIRI and Curtin’s School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, will conduct cutting-edge research dedicated to the prevention and treatment of liver cancer.

CHIRI Director Professor John Mamo said the new scholarship would assist in tackling a major global disease affecting thousands of Australians every day.

“The new scholarship will attract high-quality PhD candidates who will undertake research focusing on addressing important research questions about chronic liver disease and liver cancer,” Professor Mamo said.

“I would like to thank the Lions Cancer Institute for their funding commitment to this highly important scholarship and look forward to welcoming the successful recipient to Curtin University.”

Associate Professor Nina Tirnitz-Parker, an internationally recognised expert in chronic liver disease and cancer, said chronic liver disease was one of the most rapidly growing causes of death worldwide and continued to present a major global challenge.

“Current treatments for liver cancer are limited and at present only prolong the life expectancy of patients by two to three months. The new scholarship will help to tackle this growing problem by researching how to better identify and treat the disease, which in turn may improve outcomes for people living with liver cancer,” Associate Professor Tirnitz-Parker said.

The Chairman of the Lions Cancer Institute Mr Phil Chinnery said he looked forward to visiting Curtin University and seeing first-hand the work being undertaken by researchers.

“On behalf of our Directors and our WA Lions Clubs, we are both excited and delighted to have formed this partnership with Curtin University and their brilliant research team in the fight against cancer and more specifically liver disease,” Mr Chinnery said.

The new agreement, signed yesterday, will fund a full PhD scholarship for up to 3.5 years and will be available to domestic PhD students in Australia. The successful recipient will commence at Curtin in late 2020 or beginning of 2021.