Scientist Dr Adèle Richart, whose critical research aims to stop the progression of heart failure in people who suffer an acute heart attack, particularly vulnerable groups such as people with type 2 diabetes, is the recipient of the Institute’s Alice Baker and Eleanor Shaw Gender Equity Fellowship for 2019–2020.
The fellowship is assisting with vital research that could benefit millions of Australians.
It is estimated that almost half a million Australians had an acute heart attack in 2014–15 and more than 100,000 people are suffering from heart failure. Further fuelling this issue, heart disease is the most important complication of type 2 diabetes.
It is an issue very close to Dr Richart, after she witnessed a friend with type 2 diabetes suffer a heart attack and, with little treatment options available, the onset of heart failure. Now she is determined to stop the health decline of people who suffer a severe heart attack.
She witnessed a friend with type 2 diabetes suffer a heart attack and, with little treatment options available, the onset of heart failure. Now Adele is determined to stop the health decline of people who suffer a severe heart attack.
Dr Richart’s research is investigating the use of treatments which could be administered to people immediately following a heart attack to reduce the size of the injury to the heart and improve heart function. This is particularly important for people with type 2 diabetes who have a higher risk of secondary complications after heart attack, including heart failure and a second fatal heart attack.
It is potentially lifesaving work and thanks to this generous fellowship, Dr Richart is able to pursue this research more independently and help overcome career disruptions that are faced by many early to mid-career female scientists.
The Gender Equity Fellowship was introduced to assist the advancement of women in science whilst counteracting some of the barriers they face in the course of their scientific careers. In Dr Richart’s case, an international move to pursue her research career.
Dr Richart completed her PhD at University Paris-Descartes in France. In 2014, she was awarded a competitive French fellowship to move to the Baker Institute to join the Metabolic and Vascular Physiology laboratory.
She is also an active member of the Baker Institute’s Gender Equity and Diversity Committee and outside of the research lab, Dr Richart loves exercising and travelling.