Dr Willem (Joost) Lesterhuis, a researcher with the National Centre for Asbestos Related Diseases at the University of Western Australia was recently awarded a NHMRC Excellence Award for being the top ranked RD Wright Biomedical career development fellowship applicant.
He was also awarded the Bernie Banton Inaugural Fellowship for the most highly ranked NHMRC applicant working in mesothelioma (a cancer of the lining of the lungs caused by asbestos exposure) research.
The awards were presented to Joost at the annual National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Research Excellence Awards Dinner held in Canberra on 12 July.
Dr Lesterhuis’ research aims to boost people’s natural defences against mesothelioma and lung cancer by combining chemotherapy and immunotherapy to treat it.
“I’m extremely honoured to have won these Fellowships, which allow me to continue my research into mesothelioma.”
“Western Australia has the highest incidence of mesothelioma in the world, and unfortunately it’s a type of cancer that has great resistance to current treatment. I hope to one day be able to identify new effective drug combinations that fight the disease.”
“Ultimately I want to have a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of West Australians affected by this disease,” Dr Lesterhuis said.
NHMRC is Australia’s leading expert body which aims to promote the development and maintenance of individual and public health standards.
Photo caption: Dr Joost Lesterhuis receiving his award from Professor Ian Olver of the NHMRC Research Council. Photo: Irene Dowdy, NHMRC.
Professor Joost Lesterhuis (UWA School of Biomedical Sciences) (+61 8) 6151 0895
Emily Stone (UWA Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences) (+61 8) 6457 7365