Public Health Research

Public health encompasses many areas including epidemiology, biostatistics, indigenous health, health promotion, social research, sexual health and disease control, with the aim to determine, define and solve community health problems.

Restoring values to medicine: Professor Ian Kerridge (2008-2011)

Professor Ian Kerridge

With the support of Sydney Medical School Foundation, Associate Professor Ian Kerridge and colleagues from the Faculty of Medicine's Centre for Values, Ethics and the Law in Medicine (VELiM) will investigate how clinicians, academics and biomedical scientists understand a series of philosophical questions that are at the heart of all medical practice and are the major determinants of how we organise our health care systems.

This research will use qualitative research methods to establish an evidence based framework for the teaching and learning of foundational issues and concepts in medicine and science, including the use of evidence, critical reasoning, ethics, values, and professionalism.

Physical Activity and Health: Professor Adrian Bauman (2004-2009)

Professor Adrian Bauman

Physical inactivity and increasing rates of obesity are two of the major health risks for Australian adults and children. The physical activity research group comprises several groups of public health researchers working to understand why we are inactive, to monitor physical activity patterns and trends, and develop innovative interventions and solutions to increase our physical activity levels.

Sydney Medical School Foundation Fellow, Professor Adrian Bauman leads the group of physical activity and health researchers at the University of Sydney, and is Director of the Centre for Physical Activity and Health.

The group contributes to research and policy in NSW through the Centre for Physical Activity and Health (CPAH), and also has strong collaborative links with the other co-located NSW Centre of Public Health Nutrition and the Centre for Overweight and Obesity, as well as research links with our NHMRC Program and Capacity Building Grant partners at the University of Queensland.

Cancer genes, environment and behaviour program: Professor Bruce Armstrong (2002-2008)

Professor Bruce Armstrong

Professor Bruce Armstrong heads the Cancer genes, environment and behaviour program, funded by Sydney Medical School Foundation. The program aims to increase knowledge of the interacting contributions that genetic, environmental and behavioural factors make to risk and outcomes of cancer through epidemiological studies of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, cutaneous melanoma, acute lymphocytic leukaemia and breast cancer.

These studies will add new knowledge to present evidence that environmental and behavioural risk factors are important in the occurrence and the outcome of cancer, and will identify common genetic variants that influence cancer occurrence and outcomes and modify the impact of the environmental risk factors. Given the important role that immune function is thought to play in determining whether clinical cancer develops from an initiated cell and whether related cancer recurs and progresses, the results of our work with variants of immune function genes are likely to be of substantial significance, both in understanding the mechanisms of cancer development and progression and in guiding development of preventive and therapeutic interventions

Chronic wounds: Professor Christopher Jackson (2007-2008)

Professor Chris Jackson

Chronic leg ulcers are a major public health burden associated with high direct health care costs and substantial negative impact on the quality of life of patients and carers. Despite recent advances in wound care many ulcers still fail to heal.

Associate Professor Jackson's team were the first to prove that activated protein C (APC), a naturally occurring anti-clotting agent, promotes cutaneous wound healing. In addition they have resolved the mechanisms underlying APC's actions in wound healing and completed a small open labelled pilot clinical trial on patients suffering chronic wounds using a topical APC. This trial has showed positive results with all patients either completely healing or showing significant improvement in healing. The team is currently completing additional trials to further evaluate APC over the next 30 months.

Osteoporosis in the ageing: Associate Professor Gustavo Duque (2007-2008)

Associate Professor Gustavo Duque

With the support of Sydney Medical School Foundation in 2008, Associate Professor Duque implemented the Ageing Bone Research Program at Nepean Clinical School. The program included three elements; basic sciences, translational research, and clinical trials.

The focus of the program is to determine the changes that happen during the ageing process in bone, including the identification of the potential link between ageing and senile osteoporosis as well as the identification of potential therapeutic approaches for senile osteoporosis.