On the cutting edge of healthcare discovery

Public invited to presentation by Matai Medical Research Institute.

Public invited to presentation by Matai Medical Research Institute.

EAST COAST MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY: Matai Medical Research Institute director of research Dr Samantha Holdsworth will outline in a free public presentation on Friday the Gisborne Hospital-based research centre’s world-leading work in medical imaging, mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) and heart disease. Picture by Paul Rickard

The East Coast is poised to be at the forefront of traumatic brain injury and heart disease research, says Auckland University Professor of Anatomy and Centre for Brain Research director Sir Richard Faull.

The public is invited to hear what it is about, who is involved and inclusive learning and career opportunities for this region’s young people at a public presentation in Gisborne on Friday.

Matai Medical Research Institute director of research Dr Samantha Holdsworth will outline the Gisborne-based medical imaging research centre’s focus on mild traumatic brain injury and heart disease.

Sir Richard will talk about brain research and bringing this research to the people.

“The East Coast community will lead transformational healthcare and provide pathways for others to follow,” he says.

“This initiative (Matai institute) will inspire a change to healthcare discovery in Aotearoa.”

At the institute’s launch in May, Dr Holdsworth said Matai wanted to improve health and education status, and provide high-tech job opportunities in the Gisborne region while becoming a global research centre of excellence.

Through the development of advanced MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) technology, Matai aims to identify bio-markers in concussion and mild traumatic brain injury.

“This is a move beyond primary industry. We can make the most of innovative people in Gisborne. With our network and local talent we can grow and make a big difference.”

Dr Holdsworth is a medical physicist, senior lecturer with Auckland University’s department of anatomy and medical imaging and principal investigator at the Centre for Brain Research.

Originally from Te Karaka, her passion is to bring her experience as a senior researcher at Stanford University, California — where she made breakthroughs in MRI technologies — back to Gisborne.

Other speakers will include Ngati Porou Hauora chairman Teepa Wawatai, who will talk about Te Rangawairua o Paratene Ngata Research Centre’s initiatives and collaborations; and Auckland University’s Department of Anatomy and Medical Imaging Associate Professor and Institute of Environmental Science and Research chief scientist Brett Cowan, who will talk about heart imaging advances and commercialisation.

Heart Foundation medical director, New Zealand Cardiac Network clinical leader and Hauora Tairawhiti cardiologist Dr Gerry Devlin will talk about heart health in Tairawhiti.

Matai research collaborator and University of Otago post-doctoral research fellow Dr Cassidy Hameora Moeke will talk about earlier risk assessments for heart problems.

Dr Patrick McHugh will talk about community-based research initiatives.

Matai chief operating officer Leigh Potter will explain what Matai means to her after 20 years in frontline healthcare.

Matai trustee and Turanga Health chief executive Reweti Ropiha will also speak at the presentation.

  • The Matai institute’s public presentation will be held at the Lawson Field Theatre on Friday. Drinks and nibbles will be available from 5.30pm and the one-hour presentation will start at 6pm. Attendance is free but seats are limited. For bookings email j.lepper@matai.org.nz or phone 027 379 0170.




The East Coast is poised to be at the forefront of traumatic brain injury and heart disease research, says Auckland University Professor of Anatomy and Centre for Brain Research director Sir Richard Faull.

The public is invited to hear what it is about, who is involved and inclusive learning and career opportunities for this region’s young people at a public presentation in Gisborne on Friday.

Matai Medical Research Institute director of research Dr Samantha Holdsworth will outline the Gisborne-based medical imaging research centre’s focus on mild traumatic brain injury and heart disease.

Sir Richard will talk about brain research and bringing this research to the people.

“The East Coast community will lead transformational healthcare and provide pathways for others to follow,” he says.

“This initiative (Matai institute) will inspire a change to healthcare discovery in Aotearoa.”

At the institute’s launch in May, Dr Holdsworth said Matai wanted to improve health and education status, and provide high-tech job opportunities in the Gisborne region while becoming a global research centre of excellence.

Through the development of advanced MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) technology, Matai aims to identify bio-markers in concussion and mild traumatic brain injury.

“This is a move beyond primary industry. We can make the most of innovative people in Gisborne. With our network and local talent we can grow and make a big difference.”

Dr Holdsworth is a medical physicist, senior lecturer with Auckland University’s department of anatomy and medical imaging and principal investigator at the Centre for Brain Research.

Originally from Te Karaka, her passion is to bring her experience as a senior researcher at Stanford University, California — where she made breakthroughs in MRI technologies — back to Gisborne.

Other speakers will include Ngati Porou Hauora chairman Teepa Wawatai, who will talk about Te Rangawairua o Paratene Ngata Research Centre’s initiatives and collaborations; and Auckland University’s Department of Anatomy and Medical Imaging Associate Professor and Institute of Environmental Science and Research chief scientist Brett Cowan, who will talk about heart imaging advances and commercialisation.

Heart Foundation medical director, New Zealand Cardiac Network clinical leader and Hauora Tairawhiti cardiologist Dr Gerry Devlin will talk about heart health in Tairawhiti.

Matai research collaborator and University of Otago post-doctoral research fellow Dr Cassidy Hameora Moeke will talk about earlier risk assessments for heart problems.

Dr Patrick McHugh will talk about community-based research initiatives.

Matai chief operating officer Leigh Potter will explain what Matai means to her after 20 years in frontline healthcare.

Matai trustee and Turanga Health chief executive Reweti Ropiha will also speak at the presentation.

  • The Matai institute’s public presentation will be held at the Lawson Field Theatre on Friday. Drinks and nibbles will be available from 5.30pm and the one-hour presentation will start at 6pm. Attendance is free but seats are limited. For bookings email j.lepper@matai.org.nz or phone 027 379 0170.




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