High Blood Pressure Research Council of Australia



HBPRCA Email Newsletter

December 2007


The final e-news for the year we saved until after the annual scientific meeting which was an outstanding success by all accounts.  Thanks must go to Jaye and as well to Athina (behind the scenes) for setting such a high standard.  The dinner was a real hoot and we have had many requests to keep the “dancing” for next year so I hope the new program secretaries (plural) are listening.  There is also a strong push for another karaoke night, which seems to becoming a feature of recent meetings.


To view photos of the Annual Scientific Meeting, please click here.



Have a great Christmas break and stay tuned for a new executive, new look web site, all happening next year.


With best wishes,


Associate Professor Geoffrey A Head



EXTRA EXTRA: New Executive elected in hotly contested 5 way split

In the recent season for voting we have been very careful not to let our own election overshadow the recent Federal election and alter the national balance of power. It was great that so many put their names forward and that there are clearly quite a few waiting in the wings. We are pleased to announce to members the results of the recent election for the executive of the HBPRCA for 2008-2010. As announced at the recent AGM the results were  

-          Ann Goodchild (NSW)

-          Brian Morris (NSW)

-          Bruce Neal (NSW)

-          Arduino Mangoni (SA)

-          Doug McKitrick (WA)

-          Louise Burrell (VIC)

-          Kate Denton (VIC)

-          Stephen Harrap (VIC)

-          Geoff Head (VIC)

-          Markus Schlaich (VIC)




PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE from Stephen Harrap

Mid-December is always a nice time of year, with the business of the Annual Scientific Meeting complete and the thought of the holidays ahead. And this year there is special pleasure reflecting on the ASM in Adelaide, which was truly a terrific meeting. With great international visitors and named lectures and the keen competition for the student and young investigator prizes, the standard was exceptional. The interdigitation with the ASCEPT meeting also working particularly well.

The success of the meeting was due in no small part to the hard work of our outgoing Program Secretary Jaye Chin-Dusting who, with the sterling assistance of Athina from Meetings First, put together a program to remember.

The meeting was also an important occasion, as on your behalf I signed with the President of the ISH Lars Lindholm, the Contract for the International Society of Hypertension Scientific Conference to be held in Sydney in 2012. The HBPRCA is the official host of the ISH meeting and we take responsibility for its success.

Talking of ISH, the abstract submissions for the ISH Conference in Berlin in June 2008 close on January 15 2008, so don’t miss the deadline. I’d also like to encourage all of you who are not yet members of the ISH, to join. The membership is not very expensive and brings with it subscription and electronic access to the Journal of Hypertension and of course substantial savings on the registration fee for the Berlin meeting, which is a combined ISH/ESH conference. You can find information on membership towards the end of this e-news.

We saw a changing of the guard among your Executive in Adelaide. We bid farewell to Jaye Chin-Dusting, Lindon Wing, Malcolm West and Karen Duggan, each of whom has made important contributions towards a wide range of achievements of the Executive over the last 3 years. On your behalf I’d like to thank them most sincerely for their dedication and hard work. We are delighted to welcome onto the Executive Ann Goodchild, Bruce Neal, Arduino Mangoni and Marcus Schlaich, who I am sure will help make sure that the Council continues to grow and enjoy further success.


Finally, may I wish you all a Very Happy Christmas and all the best for a Healthy and Prosperous New Year.



MEETING NEWS from Jaye Chin Dusting

When attending any conference (International or National) these days, I consider it worth the time when I can walk away with having heard a couple of outstanding plenaries and having gleaned a couple of new ideas for my own work.  By this criterion, the 29th Annual Scientific Meeting held in conjunction with the ASCEPT-SEAWP meeting at the Adelaide Hilton last week was for me (and I hope for most of you) an outstanding success.  The joint sessions on Oxidative Stress and Cardiovascular Genetics with ASCEPT-SEAWP saw international invite speakers the caliber of Stavros Selemedis (ASCEPT), our (my) own Greg Dusting, Julie Chan (Taiwan), Toru Nabika (Japan) and HBPRCA President Stephen Harrap mix it up with free oral communications from council members.  The Austin Doyle Lecturer Ian Fraser delivered the sort of talk that I wish I could wrap up and take home to all researchers, students and our external stakeholders.  It was an inspiring and generous presentation delivered with sincerity and what I marveled at most given Ian must be one of the most sought after speakers in the country – freshness.  “The little prick” deserves all the accolades received thus far.  Tien Wong, our Colin Johnston lecturer delivered a dynamic and accessible presentation on the “window to our circulation” and Guido Grassi, our most charming invited speaker from Milan delivered his RD Wright presentation on the neurogenic basis for hypertension with convincing flair.


This year we also had 3 “special lectures” where exceptions to the programme had been made for exceptional reasons.  These gave an intellectual and scientific depth and gravitas to the meeting, which this year, quite without prior deliberation became very much a meeting of research translation and clinical application.  The current president of ISH, Lars Lindholm “cut the crap and showed us his willy” by emphatically arguing that beta-blockers should no longer be first-line anti-hypertensive therapy, John Chalmers, presenting on behalf of many members of council revealed the findings of the ADVANCE trial (Lancet, 2007) and Paul Korner gave us a glimpse of the analytical prowess behind his book “Éssential Hypertension and Its Causes”.  I bought a copy for the lab when it was first released and can verify that we dip into it often as a guiding tool.


The quality of the meeting never let slip with the young investigators in particular giving the experienced a run for their money.  Tim Burton, BHS award winner impressed with his talk on the aldosterone response pathway.  Claudia McCarthy (Monash University), student oral prize winner, won the award to go to the British Hypertension Society in an outstanding session of student presentations, Rae Chi Huang (University of Western Australia) was a double gold medalist winning the early career scientist oral award as well as the Robert Vandongen award, Sonja Tesanovic (Monash University) won the Student Moderated poster prize and Angela Makris (Heart Research Institute) the Clinical Science prize.



Memorable moments included Daniel Talmont’s off the cuff presentation to our student body where he generously offered them his services as mentor into a career in industry, his tango on the dance floor with our Corporate Liaison Louise Burrell, Michael Stowasser playing split personalities to chair his own talk in the genetics session and Ian Puddey landing a one-two in response to Brian Morris’ criticisms of his paper.  It was a typically robust meeting, lightened with many moments of levity and collegiality.  In my capacity as Program Secretary, I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their wonderful support and participation these past 3 years and to wish the new Program Secretaries Kate Denton and Markus Schlaich all the very best in their future roles.





The exchange with the British Hypertension Society continues to be enormously successful, as seen from Jim Sharman’s report on his recent trip to the UK. Dr Tim Burton, the 2007 BHS winner, attended this years HBPRCA meeting and gave an excellent presentation and it was recognised that the results of his work has a huge significance as it supports the presence of an aldosterone negative feedback loop. Below is a brief profile introducing Dr Burton.  This year Claudia McCarthy from Monash University is the winner of the Student Oral Award and will be giving an invited presentation at the British Hypertension Society Annual Meeting at Queens College, Cambridge Monday 15th – Wednesday 17th September, 2008. Congratulations Claudia, I hope you have a great trip!


Trip Report HBPRCA Young Investigator Award 2006

Dr James Sharman, Medicine, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Queensland

I was very grateful to receive the early career award to attend The 2007 British Hypertension Society Annual Scientific Meeting at St John’s College, Cambridge.  Overall, the quality of the poster and oral presentations were of an exceptionally high standard, crossing many facets of hypertension research.  The British seem to be experts in the art of debating (gladiatorial style) and the (mostly) good natured verbal sparring at question times was particularly entertaining.  Of great value to me was the opportunity to get to know some of the top researchers in my field who had just previously been names on papers.  Being able to view their latest work was also highly beneficial.  The most significant aspect of the trip came from visits to the Clinical Pharmacology Unit at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, as well as the International Centre for Circulatory Health, at Imperial College, London.  These have resulted in exciting collaborative projects that are now underway.  In a nutshell, this was a terrific trip that has been of great professional benefit and I would like to reiterate my sincere gratitude for this opportunity made possible by the HBPRCA. 

Many thanks, Jim Sharman


British Hypertension Society – Young Investigator Award Speaker

Dr Tim Burton - Clinical Pharmacology Unit, University of Cambridge

I am currently working as a Specialist Registrar in Clinical Pharmacology and General Medicine at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge. I began my medical training in Cambridge in 1994, affiliated to Downing College, and achieved a First Class Degree in 1997. I then joined the MB PhD programme and completed three years of research, under the supervision of Dr. Douglas Ferguson, in the University Department of Pharmacology. After obtaining a PhD in 2001, I continued with my clinical education to complete the MB BChir in 2002.


Following the completion of house officer and senior house officer posts, in addition to passing examinations leading to Membership of the Royal College of Physicians of the UK, I commenced my current post as a Clinical Pharmacologist in Dec 2005. The first year of my Specialist Registrar training was largely dedicated to General Medicine commitments. However, over the last year I have had the opportunity to become active in research. The Department of Clinical Pharmacology, led by Professor Morris Brown, has a strong interest in hypertension research. It is well known that sodium absorption in the kidney, under the control of hormones such as aldosterone, is crucial to blood pressure regulation. The epithelial sodium channel, which formed the focus of my PhD research, is a key mediator in aldosterone induced sodium absorption. We have recently discovered that the epithelial Na+ channel is expressed in the adrenal gland and are investigating its role in aldosterone secretion. I recently presented this work at the British Hypertension Society and it is a great privilege to have the opportunity to speak at the High Blood Pressure Research Council of Australia.



MEMBERSHIP NEWS from Doug McKitrick

We thank everyone who has this year made an effort to encourage or support colleagues, staff or students to become members of the HBPRCA. The results have been outstanding. As announced at the Annual General Meeting, the number of applications for Ordinary membership in the HBPRCA for 2008 has risen slightly giving us a combined membership (all categories) of 287, slightly higher than last year.


Speaking of student memberships we remind all supervisors that student membership in the HBPRCA is free and is a requirement for student presenting authors at the Annual Scientific Meeting (ASM). A membership application form can be downloaded, completed by the applicant and signed by sponsoring members to complete the application process. And with the memory of the 2007 Adelaide meeting still fresh don't forget to encourage your colleagues - scientists, clinicians and health professionals - to consider joining the HBPRCA.




On behalf of the Council of the International Society of Hypertension (ISH) I would like to invite you to:


1.       nominate members for the ISH 2008 Awards;

2.       nominate members for Council;

3.       bid for the ISH Biennial Scientific Meeting in 2016.


Further information follows.


1.        ISH 2008 Awards – Call for Nominations

On the occasion of its 22nd Biennial Scientific Meeting, which will be held in Berlin, Germany from 14 – 19 June 2008, the ISH with the collaboration and generous support of corporate sponsors, is pleased to announce the availability of a certain number of awards.  Award sponsorship totals USD 130,000.


The ISH would like to call for nominations for the following awards:


·          AstraZeneca Award

·          Boehringer Ingelheim Developing World Award

·          Franz Volhard Award and Lectureship, supported by Bayer Schering Pharma AG

·          Pfizer Award x 2

·          The Robert Tigerstedt Award, supported by MSD

·          The Stevo Julius Award, supported by Novartis


The Austin Doyle Award, supported by Servier Australia, will be awarded in 2008. However, nominations are not required from members. The recipient will be judged to have submitted the best original presentation relevant to clinical medicine, at the ISH 2008 Scientific Meeting.


Before nominating a member, please view full information on criteria and eligibility of nomination in the Awards section of 

www.ish-world.com or contact the Secretariat (Email: secretariat@ish-world.com).




2.       COUNCIL - Call for Nominations

Five positions on the Scientific Council will become available at the next Scientific Meeting to be held in Berlin in June 2008.  The Society is now inviting nominations to fill these positions.


The term of office for ordinary members of the Scientific Council is four years; immediate re-election for a second four year term is possible. 


All nominations must be supported by any three members of the Society and should be accompanied by a letter of interest by the nominee in holding a position on the Council. 


Nominations should be RECEIVED BY the Secretariat NO LATER THAN FRIDAY 14 March 2008. Please address ALL CORRESPONDENCE to PROFESSOR AM HEAGERTY, ISH SECRETARY. (Email: tony.heagerty@manchester.ac.uk / secretariat@ish-world.com)




‘Election of Council. Council Members and Officers shall be elected as follows: At the time of the General Meeting of the Society the Society shall vote on membership of the Council for the succeeding four (4) years, giving due consideration to the recommendations of the Executive Committee. Any three members of the Society may nominate a candidate by writing to the Secretary of the Council not less than ninety days before the scheduled General Meeting of the SocietyImmediate re-election for a second 4 year term is possible, but members of the Council and Officers may serve not more than two consecutive four‑year terms.’


3.       2016 Biennial Scientific Meeting – Request for Proposals

The Council of the ISH would welcome bids from scientists, research groups or National Societies of Hypertension to host the ISH Biennial Scientific Meeting in 2016. 


Previous conferences have attracted more than 5,000 delegates and local organisers should be prepared to host a meeting of at least this size and to meet with the terms set by the Society. 


Please contact the Secretariat to receive a copy of the full bid requirements (Email: secretariat@ish-world.com).





We look forward to receiving your nominations for awards and Council for 2008 and bids for the 2016 meeting.


With best regards,

Lars H Lindholm

ISH President



TELEMETRY USERS GROUP NEWS: Notice of a 2008 Telemetry Workshop in Melbourne, December

This years Adelaide meeting was attended by Byron Chen who is the Data Sciences International representative for the region based in China. DSI have expressed interest in sponsoring another Telemetry Users Group Meeting adjacent to the Melbourne HBPRCA Meeting in 2008.  This has been welcomed by the HBPRCA Executive Committee at our recent meeting with the thought to extend the concept to include other compatible technologies for use in experimental animals.  At the moment we are at the very early planning and concept development phase (code for we have only recently thought of the idea). 


If any members would like to contribute to the organization or to the program they can contact Geoff Head using hbprca@meetingsfirst.com.au.


The likely date would be a half day workshop on the Wednesday the 3rd of December.




Members of the Council are invited to participate in a new working party on ambulatory blood pressure monitoring. The initiative stemming from discussions at the recent Adelaide scientific meeting has been stimulated by the desire to establish the scientific relationship between clinic blood pressure and ambulatory recordings for the Australian population. The study would be along the lines of the PAMELA study from Italy.  We would like to establish a working group from members of the council who have experience in ambulatory recording to oversee a multi-centre collection of data with a view to analyse and publish the findings by the end of 2008. We would expect to invite the National Heart Foundation to participate in this project as a joint partner.


At present we are developing the project and are calling for initial expressions of interest.


Contact: Karen Duggan, Suzie Mihailidou and Geoff Head at hbprca@meetingsfirst.com.au.




The 2nd Cardiovascular Control Conference will be held in Mahabalipuram, Tamil Nadu, India, 60 km south of Chennai on 9th to 12 December 2008.


Scientific themes include:

1)       Long-term blood pressure regulation (the relative importance of the brain and kidney in setting the level of blood pressure)

2)        Humoral-neural interactions in cardiovascular control (effects of circulating hormones and neuroendocrine systems on the sympathetic nervous system, renal function and cardiovascular control),

3)       Altered cardiovascular control in pathology (hypertension, heart failure, septic shock, myocardial infarction).



All those on the original email list will be informed when the web page is open for registrations, hopefully later this week. If you wish to be included on the email list please contact Clive May (clive.may@florey.edu.au).



HBPRCA Secretariat

Athina Patti at

Meetings First

t          61 3 9739 7697

f          61 3 9739 7076

e         hbprca@meetingsfirst.com.au

w         www.hbprca.com.au



HBPRCA would like to acknowledge the support of the following sponsors:










Western Pharmacological Society Meeting

27 – 31 January 2008

Kona Coast, Hawaii

Further information coming soon!


The International Conference on Fixed Combination in the Treatment of Hypertension and Dyslipidemia

7 – 10 February 2008

Budapest, Hungary

Click here for meeting website


2nd International Conference on Hypertension, Lipids, Diabetes and Stroke Prevention

6 – 8 March 2008

Prague, Czech Republic

Click here for meeting website


ISH 2008 – The 22nd Scientific Meeting of the International Society of Hypertension

14 – 19 June 2008

Click here for meeting website

13th International SHR Symposium

20 - 22 June 2008

Prague, Czech Republic
Click here for meeting website


Heart and Mind Psychogenic Cardiovascular Disease Conference

3 – 5 September 2008

Prato, Tuscany

Click here for meeting website


2nd International Symposium on Pheochromocytoma

17 – 20 September 2008
Queens College, Cambridge

Click here for meeting website


Annual Scientific Meeting of the British Hypertension Society
24 – 26 September 2008
Queen’s College, Cambridge

Click here for meeting website