First round of MedTech and pharma industry fellows announced

A group of 20 Australian researchers will take a step towards commercialising their work with $10,000 fellowships for placement in the pharmaceutical or medical device industry.

The Bridge and BridgeTech Industry Fellowship REDI Program involves placements of up to six months with partner companies and technology incubators to enhance understanding and skills.

The fellowship recipients will advance commercialisation of research in areas including cancer, cardiac disease, autoimmune disease, infection, dentistry, antimicrobial properties of implants and tissue regeneration.

Each of the researchers has completed either the Bridge or BridgeTech program, to enable more medicines and medical devices to reach the market.

Fellowship recipients from the Bridge Program are:

  • Dr Sarah Jones, Monash University
  • Dr William Jorgensen, the University of Sydney
  • Dr Chia-Chi Chien, Ominiwell Pty Ltd
  • Associate Professor Lionel Hebbard, James Cook University
  • Dr Frances Byrne, the University of New South Wales
  • Dr Eliana Marino, Monash University
  • Dr Bevyn Jarrott, FelCan Pharma
  • Dr Rodney Cusack, QUT
  • Dr Amee George, Australian National University
  • Sang-kyu Kim, MecRx

Fellowship recipients from the BridgeTech Program are:

  • Dr Andrea Coda, the University of Newcastle
  • Dr Marie-Luise Wille, QUT
  • Dr Elke Hacker, QUT
  • Dr Robert Johnston OrthoDx
  • Owen Zheng, Morrison Oriental
  • Dr Rajesh Kuppusamy, the University of New South Wales
  • Dr Bruce Backman, Primus Science
  • Dr Griselda Calabrese, QUT
  • Dr Omar Zuaiter, Dentroid Technologies
  • Brian Hill, Laughing Mind

The selection committee that chose the recipients comprised eight expert consortium members from both fields, who play a key role in either the Bridge or BridgeTech program consortia.

Bridge and BridgeTech Director, QUT Professor Lyn Griffiths, indicated that the program graduates now number over 450.

“It’s wonderful to see the commercialisation advances that are being achieved by the Bridge and BridgeTech alumni,” Professor Griffiths said.

“So far, participants across both programs have been involved in a total of 26 patents, 26 start-ups, 30 research and development contracts, 24 clinical trials, and 6 new product launches.

“The new fellowships provide another valuable professional development opportunity for our Bridge and BridgeTech alumni and participants.”

The fellowships are provided through the $32 million MTPConnect Researcher Exchange and Development within Industry (REDI) initiative to drive med tech and pharmaceutical sector skills development and workforce growth. REDI is funded through the Australian Government’s Medical Research Future Fund.

Professor Griffiths was recently awarded the Medical Technology Association of Australia Outstanding Achievement Award and Life Sciences Queensland Women of Influence Award, recognising her work in research commercialisation through the BridgeTech and Bridge Programs.

The BridgeTech Program will open applications for its fourth cohort on December 7 through the website.

The Bridge Program will open applications for its fifth cohort in early 2021 through the website.

For more information, email

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *