Iris Bartula

Dr Iris Bartula is a Senior Lecturer at University of Sydney.  She is a head of psychosocial research at Melanoma Institute Australia (MIA), where she is leading the Support and Survivorship research theme.  Dr Bartula is passionate about improving quality of life of melanoma patients, as well as integrating psychosocial support into a routine medical practice.  To this end, she is leading the research at MIA that will: (1) create and disseminate knowledge; (2) translate the evidence; and (3) increase the capacity of psychological research at MIA. 

Dr Bartula obtained Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) degree in 2003 from University of Sydney.  She then practiced as a psychologist in a large state government department until 2011, when she returned to university to obtain her postgraduate degree.   Dr Bartula completed Doctorate of Clinical Psychology / Masters of Philosophy at Macquarie University in 2015.  Her research focused on the assessment of sexual dysfunction in women diagnosed with breast cancer.  She was awarded Australian Psychological Society Clinical Psychologists Student Prize in 2016.  

Research Interests

Dr Bartula is passionate about researching issues affecting people diagnosed with melanoma across their cancer journey – from diagnosis, treatment, survivorship, palliative care and end of life.  In particular, her research interests include:

  • Assessment of psychosocial functioning and quality of life
  • Interventions targeting distress and psychological disorders
  • Assessment and interventions implementation into routine practice
  • Addressing the needs of oncology professionals
  • Assessing quality of life impacts of medical treatments

Role in the Centre of Research Excellence in Melanoma

Dr Bartula is a collaborator in the CRE Core 3: Psychosocial care and survivorship.

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Gough

Karla Gough

BA (Hons) PhD

Associate Professor Gough is a Senior Research Fellow in the Department of Cancer Experiences, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, and honorary Principal Fellow in the Department of Nursing, University of Melbourne.

Research Interests

Karla took up her position at Peter Mac while completing her doctoral research in Psychological Methodology, Design and Analysis. As part of her role, she provides methodological and statistical input to multiple groups within the Peter Mac and Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre member institutions. Karla has been involved in all stages of the research process including the preparation of grant applications, study protocols, ethics proposals and all forms of dissemination. She also has a major teaching role. Currently, Karla is a co-investigator on multiple competitively funded projects; most involve interdisciplinary collaborations with nurses, doctors, allied health professionals and, most importantly, consumer and carer advocates. Her main areas of interest are care pathways and delivery systems across the continuum of cancer care; and quality measurement and reporting systems, including the capture and integration of patient-reported data 

Her main areas of interest are care pathways and delivery systems across the continuum of cancer care; and quality measurement and reporting systems, including the capture and integration of patient-reported data

Role

In the Centre of Research Excellence in Melanoma, Dr Karla Gough,  will be involved in both Core 3:  Psychosocial care and survivorship.

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Alex Menzies

BSc(Med) MBBS (Hons) FRACP PhD

Associate Professor Menzies is a Medical Oncologist and of Melanoma Medical Oncology at Melanoma Institute Australia (MIA), The University of Sydney, and Royal North Shore and Mater Hospitals.

Research Interests

He completed his PhD in 2015 for research exploring the biology of BRAF-mutant melanoma and biomarkers of response and resistance to targeted therapy. His main research interests are clinical trials of new systemic therapies for metastatic melanoma and biomarkers of response and resistance to systemic therapy. He was the first-ranked fellow awarded a Cancer Institute New South Wales Early Career Fellowship in 2015, with second CINSW ECF awarded in 2018. He has an impressive track record for clinical and translational research for this early stage in his career. Since 2009 he has been an investigator on over 70 sponsored and investigator-led Phase I to III clinical trials of systemic therapies in melanoma, has over 70 publications with over 2000 citations since 2013, and has been on steering committees and been an invited speaker at several international research meetings.

Role

In the Centre of Research Excellence in Melanoma Associate Professor Menzies will be working on Core 2,  the clinical application of bio-markers.

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Frances Rapport

PhD, MPhil, BA (HONS), Cert. Ed., FRSA

Professor Rapport is Professor of Health Implementation Science at Macquarie University, Honorary Professor of Qualitative Health Research (Swansea University, UK) and Stream Lead for the Implementation Science Stream at the Australian Institute for Health Innovation, Centre for Healthcare Resilience and Implementation Science, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia.

Research Interests

Professor Rapport is a leading health services researcher with an international reputation for work examining the determinants of ill-health using qualitative research methods in clinical trials and observatory studies. Her current research promotes the uptake of findings into routine healthcare contexts, ensuring the rigorous use of mixed-methods across chronic conditions. Highlights from current research include: assessment of service use for complex epilepsy in NSW (publications in BMJ Open and Epilepsy and Behavior); patient behaviour and perceptions of risk in breast cancer (publications in Qualitative Health Research and Handbook of Research Methods in Health and Social Sciences) and patient-reported outcomes of Ulcerative Colitis drug use (publications in Lancet G&H and Health Technology Assessment). She has received research funding of over $11.9 million dollars, held Visiting Professorships at Harvard and Texas Universities, is currently a Visiting Professor at Bournemouth, AbdulAziz, and Tromsø Universities, and an Advisory Board member at the SAX Institute Australia.

Professor Rapport reviews for the NHMRC and NIHR England and has sat on the NIHR England Research Committee Board, NIHR Health Services Research Specialty Group (Welsh Representative), Welsh Assembly Government Health Award Committee, and HSR Ireland. Professor Rapport has more than 100 publications and 150 conference presentations.

Role

In the Centre of Research Excellence in Melanoma, Professor Rapport will work across cores, but primarily CRE Cores 1 & 2: Leading the development of qualitative and mixed-method studies to enhance skill-mix in implementation science and supporting the management of an Implementation Science researcher at the CRE.

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Helen Schmid

MPH

Helen has a background in general and midwifery nursing and a Masters in Public Health from the University of Sydney. She has previously worked in Boston and New York on clinical trials, before joining the melanoma research group at Westmead in 1996 with Professor Graham Mann.

Her main role involves management of projects and coordination to the Melanoma Research Program of the Westmead Institute for Medical Research (WIMR), business operations support to the Program at WIMR, liaison with external research and business partners of the Program within Australia and internationally.

Role

Helen will oversee the coordination of the Centre of Research Excellence in Melanoma Project.

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Andrea Smith

PhD, MPH, BSc(Hons)

 

Dr Andrea Smith is a Research Fellow at the Centre for Healthcare Resilience and Implementation Science, Australian Institute of Health Innovation, Macquarie University.

 

Research Interests

Andrea has a background in public health, difficult-to-change health behaviours such as smoking, and qualitative health research. She completed her PhD in smoking cessation at the School of Public Health, University of Sydney in early 2018. During her PhD she worked on a number of cancer-related projects, primarily in tobacco control, for organisations such as Cancer Council NSW and Cancer Institute NSW. She is interested in using implementation science to build on and enhance the Centre of Research Excellence’s demonstrated capability for successful translation of research into the field.

 

Role

In the Centre of Research Excellence Melanoma, Dr Andrea Smith, as an early career researcher, will work across all cores. Andrea’s role will be to study the systems and structures across the CRE, with the aim of supporting the CRE to improve how and where best practice melanoma care is delivered in Australia.

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Caroline Watts

BA (Hons), MPH, PhD

Dr Caroline Watts is a Research Fellow in Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention Research Group in the Sydney School of Public Health University of Sydney and an investigator at the Melanoma Institute Australia (MIA). She also holds a Research Fellow position in the Surveillance,Evaluation and Research Program at the Kirby Institute, Universtiy of NSW.

Research Interests

Caroline has a background in health economics and epidemiology. At the University of Sydney she has been conducting economic evaluation with the aim of improving the management of individuals at very high risk of melanoma and is interested in using an implementation science framework to investigate issues around the provision of sentinel lymph node biopsy. Her research interests at the Kirby Institute also involve conducting economic evaluations of public health programs.

Role

In the Centre of Research Excellence in Melanoma, Dr Caroline Watts,  as an early career researcher, will be involved in both Core 1 'Prevention and individuals at high risk of melanoma' and Core 4 'Health Economics, Implementation, Policy'.

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James Wilmott

PhD

Dr Wilmott is the Research leader of the Long/Scolyer Melanoma Translational Research Group, Charles Perkins Center and The University of Sydney.

Research Interests

Dr Wilmott is an Early Career Research Fellow (NHMRC & CINSW 2015-2019) with extensive experience in combining genomic data with phenotypic and drug response data, with over 61 publications since 2012 and over 2,190 citations (Scopus Author ID: 31067595400). Dr Wilmott has extensive experience in biomarker discovery with first author publications in Clinical Cancer Research, Molecular Cancer Therapeutics and >8 other first author publications on the area. His recent work has focused on melanoma genomics via the The Cancer Genome Atlas (publication in Cell 2015), member of the steering committee of the International Cancer Genome Consortium Melanoma Project and joint first author publication in Nature on the landscape of melanoma genomics.

Dr Wilmott supervises a thriving lab that focusses on the genomic and immune interface with to understand their synergy in the control of melanoma and in response to systemic therapies.

Role

In the Centre of Research Excellence in Melanoma, Dr Wilmott will be involved in Core 2 in Genomics, the discovery and application of bio-markers.

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