Organising Committee

Professor Renuka Visvanathan
Associate Professor Solomon Yu
Dr Ivanka Hendrix
Dr Natalie Luscombe


Professor Renuka Visvanathan

Professor Renuka Visvanathan has an international reputation in the research area of nutritional frailty. She is especially interested in the provision of quality health care to prevent the impact of frailty (e.g. falls and fracture) as well as improve the wellbeing, function and quality of life of frail, older people and consumers with dementia.

Professor Visvanathan is Clinical Director of the Aged & Extended Care Services at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (& Basil Hetzel Institute), Central Adelaide Local Health Network,  Director of the Adelaide Geriatrics Training and Research with Aged Care (G-TRAC) Centre, in an innovative partnership project between the University of Adelaide and Resthaven Inc (an aged care organisation) and project lead for the NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence in Frailty and Healthy Ageing. She is also Associate Investigator with the University of Adelaide School of Medicine's NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence Translating Nutritional Science to Good Health based at the Royal Adelaide Hospital.


Associate Professor Solomon Yu (PhD, FRACP, MBBS)

Associate Professor Yu is currently a senior consultant geriatrician and Deputy Director of Aged and Extended Care Services (AECS) at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Central Adelaide Local Health Network. He is also a clinician researcher and completed his PhD study on the topic of “Sarcopenia in Older People”  The focus of his study looks at developing a tool for detecting sarcopenia at an early stage, so that preventive intervention can be introduced before detrimental effects set in. 

Associate Professor Yu is Associate Investigator with the University of Adelaide School of Medicine’s NHMRC Centre Research Excellence Frailty Trans-Disciplinary Research To Achieve Healthy Ageing based at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital campus and Basil Hetzel Institute (Basil Hetzel Institute). As a Clinical Associate Professor, he is also working in the Geriatrics Training and Research with Aged Care (G-TRAC) Centre in Adelaide.

Associate Professor Yu is also the Deputy Director of Training at AECS, and is involved in coordinating specialist geriatric training at The Queen Elizabeth. He is actively involved in the work of accreditation in various areas of medicine. Within the Royal Australasian College of Physician (RACP), he is currently the lead in site accreditation for Geriatric Medicine nationally. He is also a member of Accreditation Working Group established by RACP to improve on the training standards across RACP. He has also been invited by South Australian Institute of Medical Education and Training (SA IMET) to review standards of training for junior doctors in several hospitals within SA health. He is a current member of the Geriatric Medicine Education and Training (GMET) subcommittee of the Australian and New Zealand Society of Geriatric Medicine (ANZSGM) and holds a lead role in site accreditation.


Dr Ivanka Hendrix

Dr Ivanka Hendrix graduated from the faculty of Pharmacy, The University of Utrecht, The Netherlands in 1998. Following her graduation, she conducted a PhD with the University of Adelaide in the departments of physiology and biochemistry which she completed in 2004. Ivanka is also a certified geriatric pharmacist. In 2006, she obtained her registration to work as a pharmacist in Australia and since this time, she has been working as a clinical pharmacist in a number of SA public hospitals. Most recently, Ivanka has been working at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital as the senior clinical pharmacist of the Older Persons Mental Health Unit and the clinical educator of the Pharmacy Department.

Ivanka has a strong interest in teaching and has been involved in teaching of medical and pharmacy students throughout her career. Currently, she is teaching applied pharmacology to postgraduate nursing students at the School of Nursing. Ivanka recently joined the Centre for Research Excellence Frailty Trans-Disciplinary Research to Achieve Healthy Aging to pursue her research interest in the Quality Use of Medications in Older Australians where she is working to ensure the safe and effective use of medications in this vulnerable population.


 

Dr Natalie Luscombe

Natalie (B.Sc. and PhD in Nutrition and Disease, 2003) is a CSIRO Research Scientist and an Adjunct Senior Lecturer at The University of Adelaide. She has over 14 years of experience in designing clinical trials determining the acute and longer-term effects of different dietary patterns, particularly those that are higher in protein and unsaturated fat, on cardio-metabolic risk in obesity and Type 2 Diabetes.  A major focus of her research has been in understanding the role that gut mechanisms play in the regulation of energy intake and glycaemia in response to protein, in young and older adults. More recently she has been conducting research to understand determinants of nutritional status, quality of life and various biomarkers of health in populations ranging from active to frail adults aged 65 years and older living in community and low-to-moderate care residential, settings. 

Natalie has authored 53 peer-reviewed papers/reviews, 2 book chapters, and numerous industry reports, and has received several awards in recognition of the novelty and impact of her work.


Scientific Committee

Professor Renuka Visvanathan
Associate Professor Solomon Yu
Professor Gustavo Duque
Professor Rob Daly
Professor Ian Cameron
Professor Ian Chapman
Associate Professor Debra Waters
Ms Rita Kinsella


Professor Gustavo Duque

Professor Gustavo Duque MD, PhD, FRACP is a geriatrician and a clinical and biomedical researcher with special interest in the mechanisms and treatment of osteoporosis, sarcopenia and frailty in older persons.

His initial training included Internal Medicine at Javeriana University (Colombia) and Geriatric Medicine, which he completed at McGill University in Montreal (Canada). Subsequently, he obtained his PhD at McGill University in 2003 with a thesis entitled ‘Molecular Changes of the Aging Osteoblast’ under the supervision of Dr. Richard Kremer. He is also Macy Scholar in Medical Education from Harvard University.

Between 2003 and November 2007, he joined the faculty at McGill University Medical School as a member of the Division of Geriatric Medicine and as Researcher at the Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research. In November 2007, he moved to Australia to join the Faculty as Associate Professor and Head of the Division of Geriatric Medicine and Director of the Musculoskeletal Ageing Research Program at Sydney Medical School Nepean -University of Sydney. In 2012, he was promoted to Professor of Medicine at the University of Sydney. In 2015, Professor Duque moved to Melbourne to assume new positions as Chair of Medicine and Director of the Australian Institute for Musculoskeletal Science (AIMSS) at the University of Melbourne, and as Staff Specialist at Western Health. 

With more than 100 peer-reviewed publications, Prof. Duque's major research interests include the elucidation of the mechanisms and potential new treatments for age-related bone loss, osteoporosis, sarcopenia and frailty. He is also looking at the effect of vitamin D, exercise and proteins on bone and muscle mass. He is the Director of the Fracture Care and Prevention Program at Western Health. As part of this Program, Prof. Duque recently implemented a Falls and Fractures clinic at Sunshine Hospital where patients are assessed for falls and fractures risk in a comprehensive manner.   


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Professor Rob Daly

Professor Robin Daly has over 20 years of experience in conducting human clinical, public health and translational intervention trials to evaluate the role of exercise and nutrition for preventing and managing common chronic diseases such as osteoporosis, sarcopenia, falls, type 2 diabetes and prostate cancer as well as cognitive related disorders. He is also interested in health issues related to vitamin D deficiency (and treatment), dietary protein and chronic low-grade systemic inflammation, and the translation of evidence-based research into practice. He has been an active contributor nationally and internationally to clinical guidelines in the area of exercise, calcium and vitamin D for osteoporosis and fracture prevention. He is a fellow of Sports Medicine Australia, a member of the Medical and Scientific Advisory Committee of Osteoporosis Australia and a council member of the Australian and New Zealand Bone and Mineral Society. He is also the founder of the ‘Osteo-cise: Strong Bones for Life’ community-based osteoporosis prevention exercise program.


Professor Ian Cameron

Ian Cameron is a Consultant Physician in Rehabilitation Medicine and has the Chair in Rehabilitation Medicine, Sydney Medical School, at the University of Sydney. He is a clinician researcher and holds a National Health and Medical Research Council Practitioner Fellowship.

Current research themes are injury, rehabilitation and disability; specifically disability and health in older people, musculoskeletal injury in compensable settings, and catastrophic injury (associated with severe long-term disability).

Ian is the Head of the John Walsh Centre for Rehabilitation Research which is located in the Kolling Institute at Sydney Medical School Northern, University of Sydney. This Unit has a focus on injury-related disability and rehabilitation. It conducts clinical, epidemiological and implementation research. It has interdisciplinary staffing and also provides educational programs.

Concurrent with his academic position Ian holds Senior Staff Specialist positions at Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Hospital and Southern NSW Local Health District.

Ian is Associate Editor of the Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine and Section Editor of BMC Geriatrics. He has a number of educational roles in the Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine (Royal Australasian College of Physicians) and the University of Sydney Medical Program.

Ian has been a member of Grant Review Panels of the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council, and the New Zealand Health Research Council, over a number of years. He is a Board member of disability studies organisation.

A further role is providing expert advice to Australian and State Governments, other semi-government organisations including the NSW State Insurance Regulatory Agency and the NSW Lifetime Care and Support Authority and NSW WorkCover, Area Health Services and other organisations. This advice relates to injury management, rehabilitation programs, and health services for older people and people with disabilities.


Professor Ian Chapman

Professor Chapman is an endocrinologist working mainly at the Royal Adelaide Hospital. He has a research interest in the endocrinology of ageing (particularly growth hormone and androgens), and undernutrition in older people. His group has also recently established a research program on obesity and its treatment in older people.

He has an international reputation for his clinical research related to undernutrition in older people, including sarcopaenia. He has received NHMRC project grant funding in this area and is a chief investigator in the University of Adelaide CRE in Translating Nutritional Science to Good Health (2012-7).

He has published many papers and chapters on undernutrition in older people, and has been a plenary speaker on this topic at a number of national and international meetings. He has extensive experience in clinical research training/mentoring of honours and PhD students, and post-doctoral researchers. 


Associate Professor Debra Waters

Associate Professor Waters is the Director of Gerontology Research at the University of Otago in Dunedin New Zealand. This is a joint appointment between the Department of Medicine and School of Physiotherapy. She is also the Director of the University of Otago Collaboration of Ageing Research Excellence (CARE) research theme; Deputy-Director of the Ageing Well National Science Challenge and Vice President of the New Zealand Association of Gerontology.

She began research on sarcopenia and sarcopenic-obesity in the 1990 as the co-director of the New Mexico Ageing Process study in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She immigrated to New Zealand in 2005 and since then has been involved with testing safe and effective life-style interventions for frail obese elders, effective community-based interventions for pre-frail older adults, and peer-led models of community falls prevention.


 

Ms Rita Kinsella (Scientific Secretary)

Rita Kinsella, is the Clinical Research Manager at the Australian Institute for Musculoskeletal Science (AIMSS). She spends most of her time working at AIMSS as well as at St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne where she works as a Research Physiotherapist. She is currently working towards her PhD, her thesis involving conservative interventions in rotator cuff tendinopathy. At AIMSS, Rita manages and coordinates the investigator initiated projects undertaken through AIMSS and its many collaborations.