Organising Committee

Prof. Andrea O'Connor

Prof. Andrea O’Connor, University of Melbourne

Professor Andrea O’Connor, PhD, FIChemE is the Shanahan Chair in Frontier Medical Solutions and a Redmond Barry Distinguished Professor at the University of Melbourne and the Aikenhead Centre for Medical Discovery. She leads the Tissue Engineering Group in the Department of Biomedical Engineering and her research focuses on design, synthesis and fabrication of biomaterials, porous materials and antimicrobial nanomaterials. She is particularly interested in strategies for scale-up of tissue engineering including vascularisation, and design of antimicrobial materials for medical implants. She collaborates with clinicians, scientists, hospitals, medical research institutes and medical device companies to improve existing products, develop new devices, and solve clinical problems.


Prof. Neil Cameron

Prof. Neil Cameron, Monash University

Prof. Neil Cameron is Head of the Department of Materials Science & Engineering at Monash University and is also the Monash Warwick Alliance Professor of Polymer Materials. Previously, he was a Professor in the Department of Chemistry at Durham University (UK), where he started as an Assistant Professor in 1997. He has a BSc and PhD from the University of Strathclyde (UK). His research is focused on the preparation of novel polymeric materials, with particular emphasis on scaffolds for 3D in vitro cell culture and tissue engineering, self-assembling polypeptides, peptide-synthetic polymer hybrids and sugar-containing polymers (glycopolymers).  His research has led to the publication of >170 papers and he has given >160 invited lectures at conferences and colloquia.  He was awarded a DTI SMART Award (2001), the Macro Group UK Young Researcher’s Medal (2003), an ICI Strategic Fund Award (2004), a Durham University Christopherson/Knott Fellowship (2008) and he was a member of the team that won the RSC’s Rita and John Cornforth award (2011).  He serves on the Editorial Advisory Board of the journals Polymer Chemistry and Polymer and is currently an Associate Editor for PLOS One. He is a member of the International Advisory Committee for the European Biomaterials Congress. He was Chairman of the Macro Group UK from 2013-2016.

Dr. Brooke Farrugia

Dr Brooke Farrugia, University of Melbourne

Dr Brooke Farrugia has a multifaceted research background including biomaterial development and characterisation, wound healing, including in vitro models, molecular biology and glycobiology. Dr Farrugia’s research interests lie in the fields of biomaterials and tissue engineering, through the development and characterisation of biomaterials and analysis of how they interact with various biological environments.

Dr. Amy Gelmi

Dr Amy Gelmi. RMIT University

Amy Gelmi is a Vice Chancellor’s Research Fellow at RMIT University since 2018 where she has established a multi-disciplinary research group focused on external stimulus of adult stem cells for personalised tissue engineering. Dr Gelmi’s work spans dynamic biomaterials, material design, nanoscale characterisation, and advanced fabrication. The Gelmi Group focuses on investigating intracellular changes in stem cells using advanced bio atomic force microscopy, creating custom fabricated cell culture devices, and developing an optimised approach to using external stimuli to drive targeted stem cell differentiation.

Dr Gelmi received her PhD in organic conductive polymer biomaterials with Prof. Gordon Wallace’s Intelligent Polymer Research Institute at the University of Wollongong. She then joined the Biosensors and Bioelectronics Centre at Linköping University (2012) to research electroactive scaffolds for cardiac patch applications, before joining Prof. Molly Stevens’ lab at Imperial College London with a Horizon 2020 Marie Sklodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship studying stem cell response to electrical stimulation (2015).


Ms Veronica Glattauer

Ms Veronica Glattauer, CSIRO

Veronica Glattauer is a Team Leader in the Biomedical Program at CSIRO in the Manufacturing Business unit. She graduated from La Trobe University with a Bachelor of Biological Sciences with Honours in Biochemistry. Subsequently, she received a Postgraduate Diploma in Computer Science from Monash University. Her expertise spans knowledge in the area of biomaterial science and engineering. Her research project activities have involved a large number of commercially driven partnerships with Australian and overseas companies. Glattauer’s research contributions have been awarded with 2 team CSIRO Research Medals. She is Executive Officer of the Australasian Society for Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering (ASBTE). In 2020 elected as Fellow, Biomaterials Science & Engineering (FBSE) by the International Union of Societies for Biomaterials Science & Engineering. 

Dr. Daniel Heath

Dr. Daniel Heath, University of Melbourne 

Daniel Heath received his PhD in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering in 2010 from The Ohio State University where he worked on the development of novel biomaterials for small diameter vascular graft applications.  He then held postdoctoral positions at the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART) Centre and at MIT where he focused on developing micropatterned cell culture substrates for in situ and high throughput clonal analysis of rare cell populations.  He began as a Lecturer at University of Melbourne in 2014 where he has continued to focus on themes related to cardiovascular biomaterials and mesenchymal stromal cells.   He is currently a Senior Lecturer of Biomedical Engineering, an ARC Future Fellow, and Assistant Dean International Partnerships.  

Dr. Khoon Lim

Dr Khoon Lim, University of Otago

Dr Khoon Lim is a Research Associate Professor at the University of Otago Christchurch and currently leads the Light Activated Biomaterials research group. His research focuses on light-activated hydrogel biomaterials for regenerative medicine, including 3D bioprinting and delivery of bioactive molecules. He has published >50 high impact journal publications and has successfully raised a total of >NZD$ 4Million research grant funding, including the prestigious Emerging Researcher First Grant ($150K), Sir Charles Hercus Health Research Fellowship ($500K), HRC Project Grant ($750K), from the Health Research Council of New Zealand, and a MARSDEN Fast Start Grant ($300K) from the Royal Society of New Zealand. His research has also generated intellectual property leading to commercialization of hydrogel-based bioinks licensed to a US-based company, as well as establishment of multiple commercial contracts. He has previously won a number of awards such as the Australasian Society for Biomaterials & Tissue Engineering (ASBTE) Emerging Investigator Award, University of Otago Early Career Award for Distinction in Research, as well as the International Society for Biofabrication Young Investigator Award. He is currently the Vice President of ASBTE, as well as a council member of the New Zealand Association of Scientists.

Dr. Jelena Rnjak-Kovacina

Dr. Jelena Rnjak-Kovacina, University of New South Wales

Dr Jelena Rnjak-Kovacina is a Senior Lecturer and the National Heart Foundation Future Leader Fellow leading a multidisciplinary, highly collaborative group at the Graduate School of Biomedical Engineering, UNSW Sydney in Australia.

Her research interests are at the interface of biology and engineering, focusing on the development of biomimetic materials that direct cellular interactions for enhanced vascularisation and for the treatment of cardiovascular disease. In particular, she develops novel silk-based biomaterials and investigates how biomaterial properties translate to biological outcomes.

She completed her doctoral degree in Anthony Weiss’ lab at the University of Sydney and her postdoctoral training in David Kaplan’s group at Tufts University in Boston. She joined UNSW in 2014 where her research has been supported by funding from the Australian Research Council, the National Heart Foundation and the National Health & Medical Research Council.

She is actively involved in the Australasian MedTech sector and is passionate about science communication.