A COOGEE resident contributing to an emerging field of cancer therapy says he wants to continue his research overseas once he completes his PhD.
Anthony Buzzai, a third year PhD student at the Telethon Kids Institute, is adding to a growing wave of research into therapies that unleash the power of the body’s immune system to fight cancer.
“This is a new and exciting field of cancer treatment,” Mr Buzzai said.
His focus has been on a protein called interferon alpha, which is produced in re- sponse to infection.
Humans are known to produce 13 sub-types of the protein but just one has been investigated as a potential cancer treatment.
Mr Buzzai has examined five of the remaining sub-types, hoping it will lead to targeted forms of immunotherapy for cancer patients.
A recent presentation of his work scored him one of two research prizes awarded each year by the Department of Health during the Australian Society for Medical Research Week in WA.
Mr Buzzai, who was drawn to his current field of research after attending seminars while completing his honours at Murdoch University, used the prize money from his award win to attend an international immunology conference in Melbourne.
He said he was driven by the potential to help people and the enjoyment he gets out of researching, with his thirst for knowledge likely to see him head away from Australia in the future.
“I hope to continue my research into cancer immunotherapies overseas after I have completed my PhD,” he said.
Supervisor Jason Waithman expected Mr Buzzai would have a bright future.