Dunlop Senior Research Fellow

Activities of the Weary Dunlop Foundation Principal Research Fellow in Metabolic Medicine, 2019-2020


Diabetes and obesity are leading causes of cardiovascular disease.  With increasing age, the prevalence of diabetes
and obesity increases. Following a diagnosis of diabetes, after a period of more than 10 years, there is risk of development of complications and in particular the risk of development of kidney disease and cardiovascular disease. These metabolic diseases and their complications affect many Veterans and their families. Centre for Research and Education in Diabetes and Obesity (CREDO) at the Repatriation Hospital had a very productive and successful year in 2019-2020.  We achieved the following:

NHMRC Clinical Trials and Cohort Studies Grant $3.185million, CIA Ekinci

Centre for Research and Education in Diabetes and Obesity undertook >10 Drug trials and 7 investigator-initiated studies.

Centre for Research and Education in Diabetes and Obesity published over 30 papers in leading diabetes, obesity and metabolism international journals.

SUPERVISION and Mentoring:
Current PhD students: The following PhD students are currently supervised by myself in the department in the fields of diabetes and obesity: Dr Irina Churilov (Rehabilitation Physician), Dr Audrey Eer (Endocrinologist), Dr Ashani Lecamwasam (Nephrologist), Dr Geetha Theverakalam (Endocrinologist), Dr Neda Zafari, Dr Nicole Kong,  Miin Chan.  The following post doctorate research fellows are also working in our  department; Dr Priya Sumithran – Endocrinologist, Dr Sarah Price- Endocrinologist, Dr Niloufar Tourkamani- Endocrinologist. We have supervised 5 University of Melbourne Scholarly Selective Research students to completion in 2019 and 2020.

Dr Sara Baqar (Endocrinologist), Dr Jas-mine Seah (Endocrinologist) Victoria Ntouma, have submitted  their PhD theses.

PRESENTATIONS: The group presented > 30 times at leading national and international diabetes, obesity, endocrinology, metabolism Scientific Meetings. Some highlights include A/Prof Ekinci presenting at:

  • 2019 GBA International Summit on Endocrinology and Metabolism, Recent advances in our understanding of the pathogenesis and management of diabetic kidney disease, Guang Zhou, China
  • Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists Annual Scientific Meeting, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, May 2019
  • JDRF- Future Research Leaders Program, Australian Diabetes Congress, Sydney, 2019
  • SGLT2i DKA and perioperative recommendations, Australian Diabetes Congress, Sydney, 2019

MEDIA/COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION: Diabetes, renal function tied to pregnancy complications, Diabetes Pro Smart Brief, American Diabetes Association, 28 May, 2020

Invited by Hon Greg Hunt to parliament to discuss National Diabetes Forum, 26th of November 2019, Parliament House, Canberra

A/Prof Elif Ekinci MBBS FRACP PhD
Weary Dunlop Foundation Principal Research Fellow in Metabolic Medicine, University of Melbourne