Boden Institute expands its research into human nutrition

3 December 2010

An increased research scope and recognition of one of the University of Sydney's most generous benefactors will be reflected in the official naming of the Boden Institute of Obesity, Nutrition, Exercise & Eating Disorders this week.

The name change will recognise the enormous contribution of the late Dr Alexander Boden AO, who established Australia's first chair in human nutrition at the University of Sydney in 1976. It will also identify the addition of eating disorders as a primary concern of the Institute.

Until recently the University's greatest benefactor, Dr Boden was among the first to recognise the threat of over-nutrition in developed countries, and his vision was to "expand research into human nutrition. Diseases such as coronary artery disease, obesity and diabetes might all result from faulty nutrition and these diseases are prevalent in Australia." This acknowledgement of the importance of the field was a vital starting point in understanding what remain today as some of Australia's greatest health risks.

"The University of Sydney is heavily indebted to Dr Boden's remarkable vision and generosity," says Director of the Institute, Professor Ian Caterson. "As a passionate and involved philanthropist and a successful professional, he made an inestimable impact on science, especially human nutrition, throughout Australia and the world."

The new name also recognises the adoption of eating disorders into the scope of the institute, which allows academics to collaborate on broader aspects of research and practice and will attract greater funding for the issue.

A joint initiative of the Faculties of Health Sciences, Medicine and Science, the Boden Institute unites key researchers in the areas of obesity, eating disorders, nutrition, physical activity and metabolic health.

These internationally-renowned experts concentrate on research, clinical intervention and practice, public health programs, and policy formation and implementation.

"The Boden Institute of Obesity, Nutrition, Exercise & Eating Disorders is committed to combating and preventing obesity and lifestyle-related chronic disease. Collectively, we have the broadest approach in and expertise for treatment and prevention of these conditions in Australia," says Professor Caterson.

The Institute will be officially named by Her Excellency Professor Marie Bashir AC CVO, Chancellor of the University and Governor of New South Wales at a ceremony at the University's Medical Health Foundation Building Auditorium next Monday 6 December. The ceremony will also include presentations by The Hon Carmel Tebbutt, Deputy Premier and NSW Minister for Health; Dr Michael Spence, Vice-Chancellor of the University; Dr Diana Thomas, representative of the Boden family; and Professor Caterson, Director of the Boden Institute.

Experts in the Boden Institute include:

Media enquiries: Katie Szittner, 9351 2261,