Centre for Brain Research

CBR news in 2010

CBR news in 2010

Million dollar donation for New Zealand’s first Biobank for brain research

1 December 2010
A million dollar donation has enabled The University of Auckland’s Centre for Brain Research to establish the country’s first Biobank for brain disease.

The generous gift from the Hugh Green Charitable Trust will fund the vital development and operational expenses of the new Biobank, which will house human cells and tissues from patients with brain disorders for expanded lab-based research into brain disease. While there are cancer tissue banks, this will be the first brain-oriented Biobank in the country.

CBR cognitive neuroscientist wins Prime Minister’s Science Prize

26 November 2010
Centre for Brain Research scientist Dr Donna Rose Addis has received the 2010 Prime Minister’s MacDiarmid Emerging Scientist Prize

Dr Addis, from the Department of Psychology and Centre for Brain Research, won the $200,000 prize for her world-leading research on memory and imagination that may lead to new therapies for diseases ranging from Alzheimer’s to depression.

CBR scientist awarded Rutherford Discovery Fellowship

18 Nov 2010
A Rutherford Discovery Fellowship, supporting New Zealand’s most talented young researchers, has been awarded to Dr Donna Rose Addis from the Centre for Brain Research.

The inaugural fellowships, providing ten early-to-mid career researchers with up to $200,000 annually for the next five years, were announced at the national Research Honours Dinner in Christchurch on November 10th. Dr Addis is a cognitive neuroscientist from the Department of Psychology and Centre for Brain Research whose fellowship will support her research into the constructive nature of memory.

Stroke researchers and Community Partners highlighted

New CBR research offers insight into recovery chances after stroke

3 Nov 2010
Stroke patients may soon know the relief of having a definitive prediction of their chances of recovery, according to research conducted by the University of Auckland.

Dr Cathy Stinear, from the University’s Centre for Brain Research, has been investigating techniques for predicting stroke recovery. Her findings were recently published in the world’s leading neurology journal, The Lancet Neurology.

CBR recruiting top postdoctoral fellow to further goals

1 Nov 2010
The Aoteoroa Neuroscience Fellowship will be awarded for three years to an outstanding emerging scientist.

The Aotearoa Foundation was founded by US philanthropist Julian Robertson. The $900,000 gift will fund one new three-year fellowship at the Centre each year. The Centre for Brain Research, a partnership between scientists, doctors and the community, seeks to find and develop new treatments for neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. It is led by Professor Richard Faull whose research spans 35 years and encompasses all major regions of the brain and spinal cord. Julian Robertson said the Aotearoa Foundation was proud to provide support to the centre which had achieved results with far-reaching potential. “This support will see this important, globally-acknowledged work continue in New Zealand, attracting the postdoctoral talent which will contribute to its advancement.”

Find out more about the Aoteoroa Neuroscience Fellowship.

CBR researchers feature in Radio NZ National Talking Heads Lecture Series

  •  Listen to the spring 2010 CBR lectures
  • Dr Edward Mee - Art, Autopsy & Anatomy: The History of Surgery on the Brain
  • Professor Richard Faull - The Marvels and Challenges of the Human Brain
  • Professor Michael Corballis - The Evolution of Language
  • Dr Donna Rose Addis - How Do I Know Who I Am?
  • Associate Professor Ian Lambie - Acting on Impulse: How Early Childhood Experiences Shape the Development of the Brain of Teenagers and Beyond

Researchers awarded funding for blue sky thinking

24 September 2010
Two CBR researchers have been awarded over $1.6 million funding for the next three years.

Associate Professor Deborah Young has been granted more than $800-thousand dollars over three years to investigate astroctyes as a new cellular target for central nervous system gene therapy. Debbie works within the Pharmacology Department and is based at the Centre for Brain Research. Her research interests include neurodegenerative disease mechanisms, ageing and neurogenesis. Dr Kathy Mountjoy will be spending much of the next three years devising a weight loss regime for mice. Her project, which received nearly $900 thousand dollars of funding, will be cutting proteins instead of calories to make fat mice thin. Kathy is the principal investigator of the Molecular Neuroendocrinology Laboratory and a member of the Department of Molecular Medicine and Pathology.

Hear the CeleBRation Choir in action!

Do You Mind? exhibition featured in the news

Art inspired by beauty of the mind

4 May 2010
An innovative science-art collaboration bringing together emerging Auckland artists and neuroscientists is being launched at The University of Auckland on Thursday 6 May.

The resulting artworks will be displayed in an exhibition called ‘Do You Mind?’ in July. A limited edition publication will also be released. It’s hoped the cutting edge-science underway in the Centre for Brain Research will inspire exciting new art and sound installations. By translating science into unusual mediums the aim is to communicate neuroscience to new audiences.

CBR congratulates world class neuroscientist

25 March 2010The Centre for Brain Research at The University of Auckland is delighted that neuroscientist Professor Richard Faull has been named Supreme Winner at the 2010 World Class New Zealand Awards.

Vice Chancellor Professor Stuart McCutcheon says it is entirely fitting that Professor Faull should receive the supreme award. “Richard is indeed world class – not only in his research and teaching, but also in the generosity with which he gives his time to roles in University governance, leadership and mentoring of others. His own scholarship, and the influence he has on others around the world, means that he has done much to bring New Zealand to the forefront of international scientific endeavour.”

Media coverage of the CBR in Brain Week

Brain Day 2010 attracts record-breaking numbers

March 24th 2010
Over 2000 members of the public gathered at Auckland Business School to learn about the wonders of the brain.

The public open day on March 20th featured neuroscientists and clinicians from the Centre for Brain Research talking about the latest research updates, as well as community groups and science demonstrations. It was the biggest event of its kind in New Zealand.

Brain Day is part of international Brain Awareness Week, aiming to raise understanding of brain health and research. Now in its fourth year, the open day is supported by the Neurological Foundation of New Zealand. Over thirty different brain and sensory charities also championed the event with a community expo, offering help and advice to the public.

CBR in the media

March 15th 2010Centre for Brain Research hits the headlines in Brain Awareness Week.

Neuroscientists highlight mental fitness in Brain Awareness Week

March 11th 2010A trio of experts will discuss how to boost brainpower in a panel discussion at the Auckland Museum.

The public event, held Thursday 18th March, brings together top Kiwi scientists from the Centre for Brain Research as part of Brain Awareness Week. Research shows that mental fitness at any age is possible, with exercise, diet and social networks. The discussion will highlight these tips to work out your brain and create your own mind gym!

Find out how to book your place at the 'Learning Machines' discussion

Neuroscientists named young alumna of the year

Feb 19th 2010
Neuroscientist Dr Jessie Jacobsen has been named the University of Auckland Young Alumna of the Year for 2010.

While studying for her PhD at the University Dr Jacobsen played a major role in developing a sheep model of Huntington’s disease under the supervision of Professors Richard Faull and Russell Snell. The model is of critical importance to researchers at the Centre for Brain Research, who hope it will help them to understand more about the neurodegenerative disease and how to treat it.

Read more here
(19.3 kB, PDF)

On 6 March Dr Jacobsen will take part in the Distinguished Alumni Speaker Day, presenting a lecture titled 'Hope' and 'Dignity': Huntington's disease research.

Her lecture, at the Owen G. Glenn Building, 12 Grafton Road, is from 12-1pm. Everyone is welcome at the free Distinguished Alumni lectures.

Brain Day 2010 March 20th

Jan 25th 2010
The Centre for Brain Research and Neurological Foundation will present a free public open day on March 20th as part of International Brain Awareness Week.

The event features lectures from New Zealand’s leading brain experts discussing the latest research and treatment trials for brain health and disease. Seminars will provide practical tips to encourage optimum brain health for adults and brain development for children.

The Science Lab is a rare treat for children and families, offering free science experiments and demonstrations. Practising psychologists, clinicians and neuroscientists will encourage hands-on interaction for kids- and big kids! Fun sensory games, brain teasers and activities will round the experience off.

A Community Expo will provide advice and support for people living with brain and sensory disorders. Around twenty community support groups will be on hand to answer any questions families and whānau may have.

Timetables and information for Brain Week 

Read more here
(70.9 kB, PDF)