International Award for WAIMR Researcher
July 19th, 2012
Associate Professor Kevin Pfleger.
WAIMR researcher, Associate Professor Kevin Pfleger, has received a prestigious international award for outstanding accomplishments in Endocrine Research, the study of our hormone systems.
The Early Investigator's Award Supported by Amgen was presented at Endo 2012, the 94th annual meeting of the Endocrine Society, held in Houston, Texas and attended by 7500 scientists from around the world. Associate Professor Pfleger also presented his research at the conference as an invited symposium speaker.
"It was an honour to be invited to present a symposium at this major international meeting, an honour that is usually reserved for those at the top of the field for the last 30 years. To then be recognised with the award as well is simply incredible," he said.
A/Professor Pfleger's laboratory investigates how hormones work at the molecular and cellular level, by monitoring what happens when hormones specifically interact with proteins on our cells called 'receptors'.
These proteins include G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), a particularly important family of receptors that signal through guanine nucleotide-binding proteins, or G proteins for short.
The research by A/Professor Pfleger's team, based at WAIMR in Nedlands, has already made a significant contribution to the understanding of protein interactions and GPCRs. His research could lead to new discoveries that reduce the side effects of pharmaceuticals.
"We are interested in how receptors interact with other proteins, including other types of receptor, to change how they work. We still know remarkably little about how our bodies function at the molecular level, but every year, amazing discoveries are made - it is a very exciting time to be doing medical research".
A/Professor Pfleger is an Australian Research Council Future Fellow, Head of Molecular Endocrinology-GPCRs at WAIMR and Chief Scientific Officer of Dimerix Bioscience, a spin-out company from The University of Western Australia. He has won numerous Australian science awards, including Western Australian Young Scientist of the Year 2009, NHMRC Ten of the Best Research Projects 2010, and the 2011 Australian Museum 3M Eureka Prize for Emerging Leader in Science.
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