Key international medicine prize awarded to University pharmacologist
Dr Rachel Codd, from the University of Sydney’s Discipline of Pharmacology was recently presented with the 2010 Sir Zelman Cowen Universities Fund Prize for Medical Research at a luncheon at Tattersall’s Club, Sydney.
The luncheon was attended by University Vice-Chancellor Dr Michael Spence and jointly hosted by the Sir Zelman Cowen Universities Fund and the NSW Friends of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The date coincided with a visit to Sydney by the recently appointed President of the Hebrew University, Professor Menachem Ben-Sasson, who also attended.
The occasion provided an opportunity for both University leaders to speak on the topic of the growing bilateral relationship between the two institutions and the value of the support afforded by the Sir Zelman Cowen Universities Fund in encouraging the growth of these relationships.
The Prize, an award of $10,000 and a medal crafted by renowned Melbourne sculptor, Michael Meszaros, were presented to Dr Codd by Dr Jerry Schwartz of The Schwartz Foundation, sponsor of the 2010 ward of the Prize.
Dr Codd was nominated for the development of a range of compounds that may be effective in treating iron overload disease and may also have application in neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, in which irregular iron levels have been implicated as contributing factors.
Speaking at the ceremony, Dr Codd thanked her team of fellow scientists and her nominator Professor Judy Black with whom Dr Codd’s association began through the University of Sydney’s Mentorship Scheme.
Dr Codd, indicated that though she had initially been sceptical about the scheme, she had found the support she received tremendously valuable to her work and has subsequently herself, as a mid-career scientist, become a mentor to very-early-career scientists.
In thanking the Fund for the award, Dr Codd also revealed that an added benefit of the award had been an expression of interest in her work from a major pharmaceutical company which had resulted from the exposure her work had received through the announcement of the award and its accompanying publicity.
Established to recognise the work of young scientists, the Prize is presented in alternate years at the University of Sydney and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. It is one of the many initiatives supported by the Sir Zelman Cowen Universities Fund to encourage cooperative work between the University of Sydney and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Since 1978 the Fund has distributed over $ 5 million in research funding.
The Fund currently supports two collaborative scientific projects between the two Universities, a program of student and academic exchange, the Fund Prize for Medical Research and the SZCUF Alzheimer's Disease Research Grant.
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