Response to Australian of the Year announcement

26th January 2017 – London, UK: Following the announcement that Professor Alan Mackay-Sim has been named Australian of the Year we have seen some confusion in recent media reporting.

We feel it is important to clarify that he was not part of the scientific team responsible for the pioneering work that led to restored mobility to Polish man Darek Fidyka. This research was led by Professor Geoffrey Raisman and his team at UCL Institute of Neurology, London, and the clinical application by Dr. Pawel Tabakow through the Wroclaw Walk Again Project in Poland.

A full list of individuals can be found in the 2014 Cell Transplantation paper here:

We congratulate Professor Alan Mackay-Sim on his Australian of the Year award and great contribution to the advancement of scientific research.


Notes to Editors

About nsif

nsif is a charity devoted solely to research into treatment for spinal cord injury.

It was set up by David Nicholls, worldwide director of food and beverage at Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, in 2005.

David founded nsif after his son Daniel was paralysed from the neck down after diving into a wave on Bondi Beach while on his gap year in December 2003, aged just 18.

We fund a research team, led by Professor Geoffrey Raisman, Professor Ying Li at the UCL Institute of Neurology. This research is co-funded by nsif and the UK Stem Cell Foundation.

We fund this work’s clinical application by Dr. Tabakow through the Walk Again Project at University Clinical Hospital, Wroclaw in Poland.

Despite the significant medical breakthrough featured on the BBC One’s Panorama programme in 2014 and again on the BBC news March 2016, much research still needs to be conducted in this area. We need to raise considerable further money to continue to fund this research for the next three years.

Media Contacts
For media enquiries please contact:
Liz Adams


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