Scientific Advisory Board

The members of the VPCC Scientific Advisory Board come from research, academic and clinical bodies in Australia and around the world. They use their significant expertise in paediatric cancer research to inform and guide the work of the VPCCC, alongside VPCC leadership.

Prof David Ashley

Prof David Ashley is a professor in the Departments of Neurosurgery, Pediatrics, Medicine, and Pathology at Duke University. Prof Ashley is the Director of The Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center at Duke, the largest brain tumor centre in North America. He is also the Rory David Deutsch Professor of Neuro-Oncology, the Director of Pediatric Neuro-Oncology and the Chief of the Preuss Laboratory.

His career in cancer research dates more than two decades. His peer-reviewed publication record focused on central nervous system tumours is diverse and includes laboratory-based cancer research, clinical trials, and public health and psycho-oncology research. His primary research focus is on the immunology, epigenetics, and genetics of brain tumors. His achievements in research have led to change in practice in the care of both children and adults with brain tumors. Dr Ashley is highly regarded for his work, as evidenced by numerous national grants, awards and invitations to plenary sessions and symposia of international standing.

Prof Chris Jones
Martha de Grootenhuis

Prof dr Martha Grootenhuis

Prof dr Martha Grootenhuis specialises in research into the psychosocial consequences of childhood cancer at the Prinses Maxima Centrum in the Netherlands. These include consequences such as medical traumatic stress, anxiety and depression, but also quality of life and fatigue. Her group focuses on the early recognition and treatment of these problems, using innovative web-based applications for screening and group interventions. Effectiveness research and implementation of interventions are part of the research program. Furthermore she is expert in the field of Patient Reported Outcomes (PROs) in clinical practice and developer of the KLIK PROM portal ( She is leading the PROM core facility in the Princes Maxima Hospital: supporting use, development and implementation of PROMs in both care and research (studies and trials).

More than 30 PhD-students have completed their qualifications under the supervision of Prof Grootenhuis and she is currently involved in 16 PhD-projects, collaborating with many different disciplines, She has over 270 publications on PubMed. She was associate editor for Supportive Care and Cancer, and consulting editor for Health Psychology and European Journal of Cancer. She is Chair of the Pediatric Psycho-Oncology Committee from the SIOP (International Society of Pediatric Oncology), member of the Pediatric PROMIS Committee, was founder and committee member Pediatric psychology Network Netherlands (PPN-NL]. In 2014, she was awarded the Wolter Goeman Prijs, by the National Association of Medical Psychology, for her outstanding achievements in pediatric psychology.

Prof Chris Jones

Professor Chris Jones heads the Glioma team at the London Institute of Cancer Research. His team is focussed on paediatric-type diffuse high-grade glioma (PDHGG), where they seek to identify the key events driving disease subtypes, and translating these findings to clinical trial, based upon robust preclinical data in appropriate model systems.

Prof Jones’s team has published widely on the genomics and epigenomics of PDHGG, and are taking key targets forward such as ACVR1, MAPK pathway alterations, and H3G34R/V mutations. His lab is part of the Centre for Evolution and Cancer, the Centre for Protein Degradation, and the Paediatric Oncology Experimental Medicine Centre at the ICR, and the CRUK Children’s Brain Tumour Centre of Excellence with the University of Cambridge. He is preclinical lead for the international CONNECT consortium, and steering committee member for the ITCC-Brain network in Europe, as well as biology lead of clinical trials such as HERBY and BIOMEDE (UK).

Prof Chris Jones
Grant McArthur

Prof Grant McArthur AO

Professor Grant McArthur AO is a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians and holds a Ph.D. in Medical Biology. He is the inaugural Executive Director of the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre; Lorenzo Galli Chair of Melanoma and Skin Cancers at the University of Melbourne; Head of the Molecular Oncology Laboratory; and a Senior Consultant Medical Oncologist at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.

Professor McArthur was the inaugural winner of the Translational Research Award of the Foundation Nelia et Amadeo Barletta, has held the Sir Edward Dunlop Clinical Cancer Research Fellowship of the Cancer Council of Victoria, was awarded the inaugural Martin Lackmann medal for translational research, received the Medical Oncology Group of Australia’s Novartis Oncology Cancer Achievement Award and has been the recipient of the prestigious Tom Reeve Award from the Clinical Oncology Society of Australia.

He has been a national and international study co-chair of a number of clinical trials of targeted therapies. His research interests include melanoma, clinical trials of targeted therapeutics, discovery of novel drug targets in cancer, targeting oncogenes, immunological effect of targeted therapies, personalised medicine, cell cycle control, metabolism and protein synthesis in cancer.

Prof Kimberley Stegmaier, MD

Professor Kimberly Stegmaier, MD, is Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and the Ted Williams Chair at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. She has advanced the application of genomics to drug and protein target discovery for leukemia. She is the Vice Chair for Pediatric Oncology Research, Co-director of the Pediatric Hematologic Malignancy Program, a pediatric oncologist at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Boston Children’s Hospital, and an Institute Member of the Broad Institute. She has served as a Council Member with the Society for Pediatric Research and as the Chair for the American Association for Cancer Research Pediatric Cancer Working Group.

Prof Stegmaier was the recipient of the Joanne Levy, MD, Memorial Award for Outstanding Achievement from the American Society of Hematology, a Stand Up to Cancer (SU2C) Innovative Research Grant, the E. Mead Johnson Award for Research in Pediatrics, and an NCI Outstanding Investigator Award. She was elected to the American Society of Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians. Prof Stegmaier received her undergraduate degree from Duke University where she graduated valedictorian, medical degree from Harvard Medical School, and trained in Pediatrics and Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at Boston Children’s Hospital and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.


Kimberley Stegmaier
Brandon Wainwright

Prof Brandon Wainwright AM

Professor Brandon Wainwright AM is Co-Director of the Children’s Brain Cancer Centre and leads a laboratory within the University of Queensland Diamantina Institute focused on understanding the genetic pathways behind medulloblastoma, a type of brain tumour that occurs predominantly in children. He is Chair of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) Australia, Chair of the Advisory Board of the Robinson Research Institute and Chair of the Board of the South Australian Immunogenomics Cancer Institute (SAIGENCI), and serves on the boards the Australian Genome Research Facility as well as several national and international scientific review committees, including the MRFF Brain Tumour Roadmap Committee.