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Top pharmacologist joins CERA

image-tools (24)This month, CERA welcomes Professor Greg Dusting as its inaugural Executive Director of Research.

Professor Greg Dusting believes exceptional clinical research begins with basic science.

“A basic scientist homes in on the micro – the cellular and molecular level – to get a deeper understanding of the macro, the overall disease,” Professor Dusting said.

Professor Dusting is charged with overseeing the strategic direction of CERA’s research and growing its basic science facilities and expertise.

The appointment is key to CERA’s future growth and continued reputation as a leader in eye research.

“There’s an excellent opportunity to build on the science that underpins CERA’s world-class clinical research programs,” Professor Dusting said.

“Central to this, will be the continuous flow of information between the scientists in the lab and the clinicians on the ground,” he said.

Recognised world-wide for his expertise in applying pharmacology and tissue engineering to cardiovascular disease, Professor Dusting is eager to apply his skills to the prevention and treatment of eye disease.

“I intend to focus on two simple concepts – protection and regeneration,” he said.

“We know that cell damage in the eye can lead to a number of diseases including glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration. Our question is – how can we protect these cells from damage?”

“Our other important focus will be stem cells. Harnessing the power of stem cells and the body’s ability to regenerate tissue will be central to stopping the progression of degenerative eye diseases and restoring sight.”

Professor Dusting’s decision to turn his attention to eye disease was based on a drive to ‘do something good in this world.’

“Sight is arguably our most important sense. Its loss can have a profound effect on people’s lives,” he said.

“With the aging of the population, eye disease is an increasing problem and an issue that requires our urgent attention.”

Professor Dusting is a Principal Research Fellow of the National Health & Medical Research Council and a Professor of Pharmacology and Surgery at the University of Melbourne. Over 30 years he has published more than 220 papers which have attracted over 5000 citations in medical and scientific literature.

Professor Dusting joins CERA from an appointment as Director of Tissue Engineering at the O’Brien Institute on St Vincent’s Hospital campus.

The appointment will be partly funded by the Eye Research Australia Foundation and the Ansell Ophthalmology Foundation.