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SOLD OUT – BioBriefing – Medicinal Cannabis: From Black Market To Bedside

July 19, 2018 @ 4:00 pm - 6:30 pm AEST

The objective of this event is to highlight specific issues for the medicinal cannabis sector in Australia, with a particular focus on Victoria. We would like to give the audience a view of the sector across the whole continuum of legalisation, research and patient access. In view of the recent publication of the Victorian government’s Industry Development Plan – Victorian Medicinal Cannabis Industry, we consider this event to be a terrific opportunity to bring together government, academia and industry to canvas issues that are important to the Australian medicinal cannabis industry.

Date: Thursday 19th July
Time: 3.45pm registration, presentation & discussion 4.00pm – 5:25pm, followed by networking until 6.30pm
Venue: Davies Collison Cave, Level 15, 1 Nicholson Street

BioMelbourne Network Members: $65
Non Members: $130
(Prices include GST.)

To check if your organisation is a member, click here


  • Margot Johnson; Director, Office of Medicinal Cannabis, Department of Health and Human Services (VIC)
  • Professor German Spangenberg, Deputy Secretary, Agriculture Research, Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources
  • Elisabetta Faenza, CEO and Co-Founder, LeafCann
  • Professor Paul Amminger, Professorial Research Fellow, Orygen/ Dr Jacqui Waterkeyn, Regulatory Representative, Orygen

See below for speaker biographies

This event is kindly hosted and supported by Davies Collison Cave

Cancellation Policy:
A full refund is given up to 7 days prior to the event
No refunds within 7 days of the event

Bio: Margot Johnson; Director, Office of Medicinal Cannabis, Department of Health and Human Services (VIC)

Margot started her career as a lawyer and regulator prosecuting for state government regulatory agencies, and over the past 25 years has worked across a diverse range of industry regulators in the fields of consumer affairs, gambling and alcohol regulation, transport and health.

Margot commenced in her current role, as the Director of the Office of Medicinal Cannabis within the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services, in August 2016.

Bio: Prof German Spangenberg, FTSE PSM| Deputy Secretary, Agriculture Research, Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources

After completing a MSc (Agricultural Sciences) at the University of Uruguay, Uruguay and PhD from the University of Heidelberg and Max-Planck-Institute of Cell Biology in Heidelberg, Germany, Professor Spangenberg undertook postdoctoral research at the Max-Planck-Institute of Cell Biology and the Institute of Plant Sciences at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zuerich, Switzerland.

Professor Spangenberg held positions as Assistant Professor and Associate Professor at the ETH Zuerich where he obtained his DSc in AgriBiotechnology, before joining Agriculture Victoria in Melbourne, Australia where he held positions as Director, Plant Biotechnology Centre; Research Director, Plant Genetics & Genomics, Executive Director of Biosciences Research for Agriculture Victoria, Chief Scientist of the Molecular Plant Breeding Cooperative Research Centre and Chief Scientist of the Dairy Futures Cooperative Research Centre.
Professor Spangenberg is Deputy Secretary, Agriculture Research for Agriculture Victoria; Professor (Plant Genetics & Genomics) and Head of School of Applied Systems Biology with La Trobe University; and Director of AgriBio, Centre for AgriBioscience.

Professor Spangenberg is also Director and Chief Scientific Officer of the agricultural biotechnology company Phytogene Pty Ltd.

He was elected Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering in 2007 and was the recipient of the Australian Thinker of Year 2006 Award. He is Past President of the International Association for Plant Biotechnology.

On Australia Day 2017, Professor Spangenberg was awarded the Public Service Medal for outstanding public service through scientific research programs in the agricultural sector in Victoria.

Bio: Elisabetta Faenza, CEO and Co-Founder, LeafCann

Elisabetta is an expert in relationship management, optimising individual, organisational and societal outcomes, facilitating collaboration and fundraising through win-win relationships. As Co-Founder of LeafCann Group, Elisabetta has driven the organisation’s strategic positioning as an industry think tank. With her core team Elisabetta has expertly laid the groundwork for product development, acquiring critical extraction infrastructure, and developing patenting, licensing and certification pathways. This has positioned LeafCann as a future operational centre of excellence for the emergent Medicinal Cannabis sector in Australasia.

Elisabetta is a Clinical Hypnotherapist and consultant hypnotherapist to medical and allied health practices including; pain management specialists, physiotherapists, and dentists. Elisabetta has extensive experience as a strategic planner and relationship manager for transnationals and NGOs in the health and environmental agriculture sectors. Her experience in project planning, strategic partnerships and fundraising has allowed her to identify key strategic partners and negotiate joint venture agreements both nationally and internationally

Bio: Professor Paul Amminger, Professorial Research Fellow, MD, PhD (Habil), FRANZCP

Paul Amminger is a Professorial Research Fellow at Orygen and also Professor of Youth Mental Health at the Centre for Youth Mental Health, The University of Melbourne.

His research spans traditional high-risk research in schizophrenia to cutting-edge intervention studies in the onset phase of psychosis and affective disorders.

Paul has pioneered indicated prevention using omega-3 fatty acids in young people at ultra high risk of developing psychosis. This research has been has been called a landmark study for early intervention in psychosis.
Over the past 15 years, he has conducted research and led clinical and research teams at Vienna’s Medical University and Orygen, with a focus on translating research into practice.

Bio: Dr Jacqui Waterkeyn, Associate Director, Sponsor Operations, Orygen, The National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health

Dr Jacqui Waterkeyn has over 25 years’ experience in therapeutic product development within the Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology Industries, including Regulatory Affairs and clinical development globally. Jacqui is also currently Head, Clinical Operations at Neuroscience Trials Australia a niche CRO based in Melbourne.

Jacqui was one of the founding staff members of Nucleus Network, Centre for Clinical Studies, a leading Phase I unit also based in Melbourne having established and operated 2 Phase I Units co-located within the precincts of two major teaching hospitals, The Alfred and the Austin. Prior to that she held roles in Regulatory Affairs at CSL in Melbourne and Argus Biomedical in Perth.

Jacqui is also a visiting specialist lecturer in Regulation of Therapeutic Goods at the University of Melbourne for the School of Biosciences. She received her PhD in Parasitology from the University of Melbourne, Department of Veterinary Science with post-doctoral training at the Walter & Eliza Hall Institute in Melbourne having received an NHMRC Peter Doherty Fellowship and won numerous awards for outstanding student contribution in the tertiary education sector.


July 19, 2018
4:00 pm - 6:30 pm
Event Category:


BioMelbourne Network
+61 3 9667 8181


Davies Collison Cave
Level 15
1 Nicholson St, VIC 3000 Australia
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