Cancer hero to speak at Zonta
HE is medical research royalty, the first person to develop a vaccine for cancer and a former Australian of the Year and he is coming to Warwick this month.
In a guest speaking coup of epic proportions, Warwick’s Zonta group has organised for internationally-recognised cancer research scientist Professor Ian Frazer to be the drawcard at a local dinner on May 29.
The Brisbane-based researcher is president of the Australian Cancer Council and heads the national Cancer Research Foundation’s Medical Advisory Committee and is “delighted” to be invited to the Rose City.
For Mrs James the coup represents a unique chance to hear first-hand the latest directions for cancer research.
It also brings us eerily close to the cutting edge of scientific discovery.
“Most people know someone or have known someone with cancer,” Mrs James said.
“It is one of those insidious, terrible diseases that somehow impacts on us all.
“I think the chance to hear from someone working at the very forefront of scientific work, which will hopefully one day provide a cure for cancer, will be a huge drawcard for Warwick people.”
So how does a regional city on the western side of the range and 180km from Brisbane, but a world away from medical breakthroughs, lure arguably the nation’s most prominent cancer researcher?
“It’s a story that started a long time before Professor Frazer received any public accolades for his work,” Mrs James said.
“He was struggling to find funding for his research.
“Then Zonta stepped in and gave him funds so he could continue.”
It’s more than a decade later with a long string of professional awards to his name, but the renowned scientist hasn’t forgotten the organisation’s early support.
“Apparently Professor Frazer always says ‘yes’ to Zonta invitations and for that we are very appreciative,” Mrs James said.
“We did have to wait nine months, but we are confident it will be worth it.”
Professor Frazer will be guest speaker at Zonta and the combined service clubs annual dinner at the Abbey of the Roses on May 29.
Numbers are limited, but tickets are available to the general public from Style Shoes in Palmerin Street.
About Professor Ian Frazer...
HE was famous in the scientific community long before he was a household name, but these days most Australians know Ian Frazer.
The Scottish-born medical researcher shot to mainstream prominence in 2006 when he was named Queenslander and then Australian of the Year.
Renowned for his work creating a cervical cancer vaccine that has become a globally used medicine, his focus remains cancer research.
Today he is director of the Diamantina Institute for Cancer, Immunology and Metabolic Medicine, a research arm of the University of Queensland based at the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane.
He is also president of the Cancer Council of Australia and chairman of the Australian Cancer Research Foundation’s Medical Research Advisory Committee.
While his research, though potentially lifesaving, sounds intimidating, his interests are more regular: red wine and classical guitar.