April 18, 2018

Double award win for passionate lung cancer researcher

Dr Tan Nguyen has been recognised for his outstanding work in lung cancer research, receiving two grants, a Lung Foundation Australia Research Award and Premier’s Award for Health and Medical Research, to continue his work at The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research.

The Lung Foundation Australia Shine a Light on Lung Cancer Grant in Aid was awarded to Dr Nguyen to support his research into the development of new lung cancer treatments through his exploration of the relatively unknown protein called SIDT2.

“During my PhD I discovered that SIDT2 was important for the immune response during viral infection – it worked to warn uninfected cells of incoming infection so they are better prepared to fight off the infection,” Dr Nguyen said.

“If we can determine how SIDT2 is co-opted by cancers to promote tumour growth, I hope that this knowledge will one day inform the development of new therapeutic strategies targeting SIDT2 to treat patients with lung cancer.

“Obtaining funding is a constant stress for many researchers in Australia. The generosity of Lung Foundation Australia and its donors has allowed me to focus on my research and the opportunity to make new discoveries.”

Lung Foundation Australia’s Research Awards Program supports research into the cause, treatment and cure of all lung conditions. Lung Foundation Australia has announced new research award funding to a total of $900,000 over the life of the awards.  Of this $450,000 is supporting lung cancer research.

Lung Foundation Australia CEO Heather Allan said supporting bright and aspiring researchers is a critical priority in the search for better treatment and hopefully a cure for lung cancer.

“Unfortunately research funding into lung cancer is disproportionately low compared to its burden, receiving less than 5 cents of every tumour specific dollar1,” Mrs Allan said.

“Supporting research like Dr Nguyen’s offers hope and undisputed benefits for people living with lung cancer.”

Dr Nguyen was also one of five of Victoria’s most talented health and medical researchers in the early stages of their careers recognised for their pioneering breakthroughs that are improving care and changing lives. Minister for Health, The Hon. Jill Hennessy MP presented Dr Nguyen with the Basic Science Researcher Award at the prestigious 2018 Premier’s Awards for Health and Medical Research.

Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research director Professor Doug Hilton congratulated Dr Nguyen on his well-deserved recognition.

“We are proud to support Dr Nguyen’s work and are excited to see the results of his continued research,” Professor Hilton said.


1 Lung Foundation Australia, Improving outcomes for Australians with lung cancer: A Call to Action (2016) http://lungfoundation.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/LFA-improving-outcomes-report-0816-proof10.pdf

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