Wednesday, 17 September 2014

IVF pioneer speaks in Gippsland

IN vitro fertilisation pioneer and international stem cell researcher, Professor Alan Trounson, will speak on stem cell research and regenerative medicine in the Latrobe Valley on Monday 29 September 29.

In a coup for the local community, internationally renowned Professor Trounson will give a “Community Conversation” in an event hosted by Monash University School of Rural Health Churchill and Federation University Australia, Gippsland campus.

Professor Trounson’s recent comments in Melbourne were widely publicised when he challenged fertility specialists “to put people ahead of profits” by significantly cutting the cost of IVF treatment. His topic in the Valley will be “Stem cells and regenerative medicine: Australia’s place in the global revolution in treatment of cancer, diabetes, blindness, spinal cord repair and potential cure for HIV/AIDS”.

Prior to his public address, he will speak to first year Monash graduate entry students at the School of Rural Health Churchill.

According to School of Rural Health head, Professor Judi Walker, Monash is privileged to co-host Professor Trounson’s visit to Gippsland. 

“His work, not only in Australia but around the world, has changed the lives of thousands of people,” she said. “It is a great opportunity for our medical students in Gippsland to hear him speak and also generous of his time to address the wider public.”

Head of campus at Federation University Churchill, Dr Harry Ballis, said it was a privilege to co-host a speaker of Professor Trounson’s calibre.


“We are delighted for this opportunity to host an international scholar of Professor Trounson’s standing,” Dr Ballis said. “This is a wonderful opportunity for the community to gain first-hand information in relation to some of the cutting edge medical and technical innovations in relation to IVF.” 

“A Community Conversation with Professor Alan Trounson” will be held in the Auditorium, Building 3E, Federation University Australia, Mary Grant Bruce Drive, Churchill from 6-7.30pm. It is open to the public and there will be an opportunity for questions. 

Light refreshments available. RSVP by Friday September 19 to sarah.j.russell@monash.edu or phone 5122 7445.

Biography

Professor Alan Trounson was a pioneer of human in vitro fertilisation (IVF), introducing fertility drugs for controlling ovulation, embryo freezing techniques, egg and embryo donation methods, initiated embryo biopsy, developing in vitro oocyte maturation methods and the vitrification of eggs and embryos.

He led the Australian team for the discovery of human embryonic stem cells in the late 1990s.
With colleagues, he founded the not-for-profit foundations, Low Cost IVF and Friends of Low Cost IVF, to enable wider access to assisted reproductive technology and fertility education for all people across the globe.

Professor Trounson held a Chair in Paediatrics/Obstetrics and Gynaecology and also a Chair in Stem Cell Science at Monash University.  He was Director of the Monash Centre for Early Human Development and also founding Deputy Director/Director of the Institute for Reproductive Biology.
He was the founding Director of the Monash Immunology and Stem Cell Laboratories at Monash University. He also founded seven not-for-profit life science companies and the National Biotechnology Centre of Excellence – Australian Stem Cell Centre (2002-03).

Professor Trounson, Emeritus Professor Monash University, has just returned from America where he has been President of the Californian Institute for Regenerative Medicine. This is California’s $3 billion stem cell agency, driving research in stem cell biology and facilitating the translation of stem cell discoveries into clinical therapies.

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