9 Apr 2020

Professor Terry O'Brien appointed Head of Central Clinical School

Congratulations to Professor Terry O'Brien on his appointment as Head of Central Clinical School! Professor Christina Mitchell AO, Dean of Monash Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences writes:

"It is my great pleasure to formally announce the appointment of Professor Terence (Terry) O’Brien as Head of School, Central Clinical School, following an international search.

Epilepsy drugs have 'little effect' on patients becoming seizure-free: paper

Central Clinical School researchers have been investigating the efficacy, toxicity and tolerability of newer generation anti-epileptic drugs – an area that has been under-researched. We present some of their findings in this series of stories.  

Adverse effects of antiseizure drugs little changed over 30 years

Dr Zhibin (Ben) Chen
by Anne Crawford

An international study led by Monash University scientists has shown that tolerability to antiseizure medication (ASM) has not improved over 30 years. This was despite the advent of nearly 20 ‘second-generation’ drugs – those developed after 1980 – designed to better the earlier treatments.

Tolerability is a key determinant of the effectiveness of epilepsy treatment; greater effort to improve it was needed in ASM development, the paper urges.

Toxic effects of anti-epileptic drugs 'overstated'

Dr Emma Foster is a neurologist and

PhD student working on epilepsy
by Anne Crawford

Anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) have frequently been linked to cognitive impairment such as difficulties in concentrating, learning, understanding and remembering, which can be more disabling to the patients taking them than the seizures for which they are prescribed.\

But studies looking into this in the past haven’t always taken into account other factors affecting the patient that may also affect cognition such as advanced age, increased frequency of seizures and mood disorders such as depression, said Central Clinical School (CCS) PhD student Emma Foster.

6 Apr 2020

A test for COVID-19 risk, infectivity and immunity

The Immunology/Allergy research team. L-R: Mrs Simone Reinwald, Ms Gemma Hartley, Dr Craig McKenzie, Professor Robyn O'Hehir AO, Associate Professor Menno van Zelm, Ms Pei Mun Aui, Dr Emily Edwards, Mrs Neeru Varese
by Tania Ewing

Monash scientists are repurposing technology they developed recently to make a rapid test to determine who:
  • has immunity to coronavirus
  • remains infectious
  • is at risk of developing a severe form of the disease.

Congratulations to Shane Nanayakkara on Mollie Holman medal win!

Dr Shane Nanayakkara
Congratulations to Dr Shane Nanayakkara on his win of a Mollie Holman Medal for an outstanding PhD thesis!

These medals are among the highest academic honours that Monash University bestows, and mark the recipients as researchers of the higher order.

Mental Health & COVID-19 survey: you are invited to take part

Monash Alfred Psychiatry research centre (MAPrc) has launched a community survey of mental health impacts from COVID-19 and you are invited to take part.

The aim is to examine resilience factors that promote good mental health and risk factors that contribute to poorer mental health.

Participating in this study will involve completing an online questionnaire (press 'Submit' at the bottom of the information section to begin the survey) which should take 30-40 minutes. These questions will include demographic information, questionnaires about your current mood, your physical health, your coping styles as well as questions about resilience.
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