Our researchers and academic staff bring together a wide range of skills, experience and expertise and have access to world-class facilities.


Institute for Health and Sport researchers have access to a wide range of specialist research facilities.

The Altitude Hotel simulates an altitude of up to 3500 metres and can be extended to higher altitudes. The experience lowers the oxygen levels from the normal 20.9% typically down to 15.5%.

Our research is investigating the impacts of reduced oxygen on a range of physiological indicators. In particular, the hotel is used to investigate the impacts of chronic lung disease and investigate the impacts of simulated altitude on performance of endurance and team sport athletes.

The hotel has space for up to 16 participants to live for an extended time. Facilities include a kitchen and communal area, bathroom, TV/DVD/internet, lockable cupboards, air conditioning.

The Altitude Hotel is at our Footscray Park Campus, Ballarat Road, Footscray.

The Interprofessional Clinic is purpose-built and provides health services and clinical training for students across our health discipline courses at Victoria University.

Located in Wyndham, the clinic is a health and community facility that provides both services to the community and interprofessional learning for VU health science students. It develops collaborative health practitioners who can work together effectively to provide interprofessional care or services while developing their discipline-specific professional identities. The clinic is committed to a client-centred approach and to ethical practice where the client lies at the centre of health service provision, enabling them to maximise their opportunities to access the services they require.

Victoria University also works with key stakeholders and the community to share our understanding of the health needs of Wyndham. This ensures we support and provide integrated health services that are individualised, responsive and complementary to existing health and community services. Consumer partnership involves clients and carers participating in decision-making about their own care, while being involved in the ongoing planning design, delivery and evaluation of the clinic’s health services.

The built pedagogy of the Interprofessional Clinic is designed around interprofessional (IP) pods, each pod includes a client assessment/debrief room. In addition to the unique IP pods, interprofessional practice at the clinic is extended through a range of spaces, including a commercial kitchen for teaching and community use, consultation and treatment rooms, videoconferencing and meeting rooms, amenities and change rooms, as well as an exercise assessment and rehabilitation area.


223 Heaths Road
Werribee Campus, VIC, 3030

VU's facilities at the St Albans Campus allow our Institute research staff and students to conduct research into important issues affecting the health of individuals and the community.

The research groups focus on world-class research and development, translating innovation in experimental medicine into positive health outcomes for the community. Many of our researchers enjoy international reputations for excellence. Through partnerships and collaborations, the work of our dynamic and enthusiastic research community benefits the whole university, as well as industry and the community.

The Institute for Health and Sport and Victoria University continues to be at the forefront of sport science research and knowledge exchange with the Western Bulldogs. Our jointly appointed staff and students are located at the VU Whitten Oval, the Bulldogs home ground. Our partnership with the Western Bulldogs is one of the longest between an AFL club and a university and VU is a major sponsor of their AFL, VFL and AFLW teams.

The Institute for Health and Sport have a substantially enhanced sport science research and knowledge exchange program with the Western Bulldogs. The program builds upon the existing level of sport science engagement. The enhanced program develops new knowledge and synthesises existing knowledge to inform coaching programs and improve the on-field football performance of the Western Bulldogs AFL, AFLW and VFL teams.

Our biomedical research facilities (basic and applied research and animal facility) at the recently renovated labs at Werribee Campus is part of a modern technology precinct. They allow our researchers to make major contributions to local and international scientific communities.

The Western Centre for Health Research and Education (WCHRE) is an innovative and sustainable teaching, training and research precinct in Western Melbourne. It comprises a three-way partnership between Western Health, Victoria University (VU) and The University of Melbourne and is located at the Western Health Sunshine campus.

The Centre aims to make a major contribution to the future health of the Victorian community. The work of the precinct will realise significant benefits for the social and economic development of Victoria based on excellence in research, a high-calibre workforce and solid infrastructure support.

WCHRE also incorporates the Australian Institute for Musculoskeletal Science (AIMSS). AIMSS is a national reference centre for research into bone, muscle and ageing, with a focus on conditions related to chronic disease and ageing such as osteoporosis, sarcopenia and osteosarcopenia. AIMSS promotes disease prevention and evidence-based interventions, including exercise and nutrition.

Facilities & resources

WCHRE’s state-of-the art teaching and research facilities include an auditorium, lecture theatre, tutorial teaching spaces, learning commons and an atrium for conferences and meetings.

The simulation area comprises operating theatre, intensive care unit and a four-bed ward.

A clinical trials area includes:

  • consulting rooms
  • gait and balance gym
  • falls and fracture clinic
  • bone and muscle imaging (DXA and pQCT)
  • metabolic testing.

Researchers also have access to a certified Physical Containment Level 2 (PC2) lab for genetic modification work. The PC2 labs allow the safe containment and study of micro-organisms that pose a moderate, but treatable, risk to humans.

Research facilities in the PC2 lab include:

  • cell culture
  • radiations room
  • confocal microscope
  • histology and live cell imaging
  • flow cytometer and flow sorter
  • Seahorse XF24 analyser
  • gene and protein analysis
  • electrophysiology and organ bath experiments.


Sunshine Hospital
176 Furlong Road
St Albans, VIC, 3021

Our people

The Institute for Health and Sport comprises over 100 research-only and academic staff along with over 200 PhD students. These researchers work across the Footscray Park, St Albans Campus, Sunshine Hospital, Werribee and Victoria University-Whitten Oval campuses and embedded across industries around Victoria.

Executive Director

Deputy Directors, Research Training

Clinical & Community Health & Wellbeing Program Leaders

Mechanisms & Interventions in Health & Disease Program Leaders

Sport Performance & Business Program Leaders

Healthy & Inclusive Communities Program Leaders

Pro Vice-Chancellor, Research Partnerships

The Institute has over 100 researchers, some of whom are research-only and some of whom are academic staff of the university whose research aligns with the institute.

The research-only staff in the institute are listed by family name.

Senior Research Fellows

Postdoctoral Research Fellows & Research Officers

  • Dr Jeremy Alexander, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr James Broatch, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Timothy Buszard, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Olivia Cant, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Nikeisha Caruana, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Neil Collier, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Narges Dargahi, Research Officer
  • Dr Sarah Dash, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Alireza Esmaeili, Research Officer, Injury Prediction
  • Dr Jack Feehan, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Elliott Flowers, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Sarah Fraser, Research Officer
  • Dr Alessandro Garofolini, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Jozo Grgic, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Jade Haycraft, Research Fellow
  • Dr Patrice Jones, Research Officer
  • Dr Azadeh Kian, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Jujiao Kuang, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Paul Larkin, Research Fellow
  • Dr Matthew Lee, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Samuel McIntosh, List and Recruiting Analyst
  • Dr Namitha Mohandas, Research Officer
  • Dr Alba Moreno, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Aurelie Pankowiak, Research Officer
  • Dr Michaela Pascoe, Senior Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Imogen Rehm, Research Fellow
  • Dr Amber Rowell, Sport Scientist
  • Cassandra Smith, Research Officer
  • Dr Bart Spencer, Data Scientist
  • Dr Alice Sweeting, Sport Scientist & Research Fellow
  • Dr Alexander Tacey, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
  • Dr Cara Timpani, Research Officer
  • Dr Kristina Vingrys, Research Fellow.

The academic staff in the institute are listed alphabetically by family name.






  • Amanda Rea, Executive Officer
    Phone: +61 3 9919 2685, email: [email protected]
  • Dominique Lanuto, Senior Administrative Officer
  • Emma Macintosh, Administrative Officer
    Phone: +61 3 9919 5790, email: [email protected].

A large number of research assistants also work in the Institute, supporting our staff and students.

The Institute for Health and Sport Early Career Researcher Association was formed in 2020. It represents IHES early-career research staff that are employed as a postdoctoral fellow, a research officer, an equivalent position with an industry partner or a teaching and research staff member.

We currently have approximately over 30 members, spread across the research programs of the Institute.

Our aims are to:

  • upskill postdoctoral researchers to promote career development and develop future leaders
  • create new projects, form collaborations within our group and beyond to build opportunities, exchange knowledge and advance science
  • create a presence for postdoctoral researchers to communicate science
  • provide ongoing feedback to Institute management regarding the needs of postdoctoral researchers for career progression
  • promote the mental health of postdoctoral researchers by increasing our social connection to each other and to the community, including creating positive interactions and social events.

Our committee members

Our members

On November 25, 2021, the Institute for Health and Sport launched a Mentoring Program for Early Career Researchers (ECRs). The Program is led by:

The Program aims to provide tailored support for our postdoctoral researchers (specifically, ECRs within IHES) to promote career development and develop future leaders. It runs for 12 months at a time, with meetings occurring once a month (minimum once every 2 months).

The Program has been positively received with more than 35 mentors and mentees (2021-22) spread across the research programs of IHES.

If you would like further information about the IHES ECR Mentoring Program, or to enquire about the next intake of participants (approximately second half of 2022), please contact Dr Julia Gilmartin-Thomas by emailing [email protected].