Centenary Research Fellowship
In 2003, the Faculty of Science established a Centenary Research Fellowship to celebrate the centenary of the Faculty. The Fellowship provides a two year appointment to an outstanding early career researcher to conduct research within one of the departments of the Faculty.
Centenary Research Fellow 2013
Congratulations to Dr. Brandon Menzies for being the Faculty of Science Centenary Research Fellow 2013.
Brandon is an alumnus of the Department of Zoology at the University of Melbourne. Having completed a Bachelor of Science degree at Monash University (2002), Brandon then undertook his Honours Thesis at the University of Melbourne and stayed in the Department of Zoology to complete his PhD (2008) focussing on the endocrine control of growth in marsupials. His first postdoctoral appointment took him overseas to the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research in Berlin, Germany to work with renowned wildlife veterinarian Thomas Hildebrandt.
In 2009 Brandon was awarded the prestigious, internationally competitive Alexander van Humboldt Fellowship, during which he used museum specimens to understand the genetic history of the extinct Tasmanian tiger. The results of this research received press coverage in the US, UK and Australia.
Brandon is now welcomed back to the Department of Zoology to collaborate with Prof David Gardner, Prof Marilyn Renfree and Assoc. Prof Laura Parry on his Centenary Fellowship project entitled “Life in the pouch: A Window into Development”. This research will investigate the affects of changing nutrition in the developing pouch young of tammar wallabies, and inform current understanding of the developmental origins of health and disease, and particularly the underlying causes of obesity.
Brandon explains that marsupials hold the key to understanding the role of nutrition in early development because their young progress through equivalent developmental stages to the human fetus external to the mother, often in a pouch as opposed to the womb, allowing direct access to the young during critical windows in development when the brain is growing and being programmed.
Brandon will take advantage of the largest tammar wallaby research colony in the world, managed by Professor Renfree and the Department of Zoology, to complete this project.
The Faculty welcomes the return of Dr. Menzies and wishes him every success with his research project.