Griffith CFS researcher named a GC Woman in Business

This year’s Gold Coast Women in Business Innovation Award 2014 has been taken out by Professor Sonya Marshall-Gradisnik from Griffith’s National Centre for Neuroimmunology and Emerging Diseases (NCNED).

The Gold Coast Women in Business Awards provide a platform to honour outstanding and successful businesswomen and industry achievers. The awards encourage ambition, empower confidence and inspire new female leaders now and into the future.

The Innovation category recognises the achievements of female entrepreneurs developing innovation in their chosen field or organisation.

Outstanding research

Professor Marshall-Gradisnik was chosen for her outstanding research into Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS).

Otherwise known as Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME), CFS is a highly debilitatingdisorder characterised by profound fatigue, muscle and joint pain, cerebral symptoms of

impaired memory and concentration, impaired cardiovascular function, gut disorder andsensory dysfunction such as noise intolerance and balance disturbance. Many cases cancontinue for months or years. It is believed to affect around 460,000 Australians.

In July this year, the NCNED launched a new CFS/ME specialised clinic and smartphoneapp, both aimed to help patients manage their illness and improve health outcomes.

The clinic is now working in conjunction with patients’ existing GPs to provideindividualised care to patients.

“It is wonderful to receive this awardas it recognises how Griffith University encourages researchers to be creative and think outside the box with delivering outcomes that are beneficial to the community,” said Professor Marshall-Gradisnik.

Development and Alumni Manager for the Griffith Health Group Gillian Rumpf said: “Professor Sonya Marshall-Gradisnik is a most worthy applicant for this prestigious award.

“Her dedication and commitment to her research within the NCNED is destined to change the circumstances for many people afflicted with ME/CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome). She is a world leading figure in her field and her research is respected and regarded as the most significant evidence for immunological and genetic changes for the development of CFS.

“Sonya leads a dynamic group of young researchers who assist her. Her innovative yet disciplined approach inspires and contributes to the valuable education of all in her team.

“She leads by example and engages in her mission to provide the best clinical care and the very best research activity at all times.”