UQ to create change with $4.87 million Advance Queensland funding

19 Sep 2016

University of Queensland research to battle superbugs, save koalas, produce advanced manufacturing materials, help infants with cerebral palsy and more has attracted $4.87 million in Queensland Government funding.

Seven UQ projects received Advance Queensland Innovation Partnerships program funding announced last night (15 September).

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Robyn Ward said the funding highlighted the strength and diversity of UQ’s research.

“This funding is shared across projects that will address health, engineering, environmental and agricultural issues,” she said.

“This demonstrates the breadth of UQ’s research excellence and the determination of our researchers to create change and tackle global challenges.

“This funding demonstrates the practical applications of UQ research, with industry giants such as Boeing, Queensland Urban Utilities and Children’s Health Queensland all vying to work with our academics towards tangible outcomes that will improve all aspects of society.”

A project led by Queensland Cerebral Palsy and Rehabilitation Research Centre Scientific Director Professor Roslyn Boyd to improve the early detection of cerebral palsy in at-risk newborns has received $1.5 million - the largest amount of funding received in the state.

“Early detection means early intervention, resulting in better outcomes for children with cerebral palsy,” Professor Ward said.

Children’s Health Queensland and the Merchant Charitable Foundation are the project’s industry partners.

The School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering’s Associate Professor Paul Meehan received $1.22 million for a project to expand on the opportunities arising from incremental sheet forming – a manufacturing technique that is cheaper and more efficient than traditional sheet forming and that can be used across biomedical and engineering industries.

He will work with industry partner Boeing Research and Technology and QMI Solutions.

The Institute of Molecular Bioscience’s Associate Professor Lachlan Coin has received almost $450,000 to lead a project that will help the early detection of super-bugs – antibiotic resistant bacterial infections – with a goal of developing a test to detect infection in less than six hours.

Project partners include the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital and the Children’s Health Queensland Hospital and Health Service.

Other UQ-led projects that received funding were:

  • $600,074 to establish a living koala genome bank to help save the threatened species, led by Associate Professor Stephen Johnston with industry partner DreamWorld.
  • $175,000 to develop a reliable, cost-effective plugging technology for abandoned coal seam gas wells, led by Professor Brian Towler with industry partners QGC Ltd, Santos Ltd, Australia Pacific LNG Pty Ltd and Arrow Energy Ltd.
  • $677,953 for a pilot  zero-energy sewage treatment system, led by Professor Zhiguo Yuan with industry partners Queensland Urban Utilities, the City of Gold Coast, the water corporations of Wide Bay, Western Australia and  South Australia.
  • $250,000 to improve tick-resistance in beef cattle, led by Professor Murray Mitchell with industry partner Nindooinbah Pastoral Company.

Media: UQ Communications, communications@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 3439.