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Scientist of the Year

Congratulations to the 2021 South Australian Scientist of the Year finalists.

Professor Timothy Hughes

South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) / The University of Adelaide


Professor Timothy Hughes is a leading medical researcher at SAHMRI, the University of Adelaide and the Royal Adelaide Hospital. He has been a global leader in discoveries that have transformed chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML) from a fatal disease to a treatable and potentially curable condition.


Over the past two decades, Professor Hughes has made critical contributions to advances in CML management, including leading landmark studies that dramatically improved survival with kinase inhibitor therapy in CML. He also led global studies focusing on the role molecular monitoring plays in optimising response in CML, and directed trials of the breakthrough drug, asciminib, which is revolutionising CML treatment today. He pioneered and validated the concept that kinase inhibitor therapy for CML can and should be used with curative intent, rather than as chronic maintenance therapy.

Professor Hughes has received numerous awards, including the national GSK Award for Research Excellence in 2017 for outstanding achievement in the field of leukaemia research, the international Goldman Prize in 2017 for lifetime contributions to improving outcomes for CML patients, and the National Ramaciotti Award in 2019 for medical research excellence.


Professor Helen Marshall

The University of Adelaide


Professor Helen Marshall is an international leader in the field of vaccine preventable diseases, with a focus on meningococcal disease and prevention through vaccination.


As a strong public advocate for immunisation, she is passionate about the generation of real-world evidence to assess the safety and effectiveness of vaccines and immunisation programs to ensure the results of smaller efficacy and safety studies hold true in population programs. She also provided the first real world evidence of direct protection of meningoccocal B vaccines in adolescents – the largest meningococcal B vaccine herd immunity study in the world.


Professor Marshall’s research has informed the state funded meningococcal B vaccine program in South Australia, and meningococcal B vaccine programs around the world – life-saving immunisation programs that have offered excellent protection to children and averted disability.

Professor Shizhang Qiao

The University of Adelaide


Professor Shizhang Qiao’s transformative work in materials science for energy conversion and storage technologies successfully brings together materials engineering, physical chemistry, electrochemistry and quantum chemistry.


He was one of the first international scientists in energy research to seamlessly combine experimentation and theoretical computation by pioneering the ‘computation-guided material and catalyst design’ principle, which has significant implications for fundamental studies and practical application of electrocatalysis, photocatalysis and batteries.


Professor Qiao’s impact is reflected through his exceptional and sustained international profile, enviable publication and citation outputs, and multi-faceted research translation, including his status as a multi-year and highly cited researcher in materials science and chemistry.

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