Fifty grants worth more than $30 million have been awarded to UNSW in the latest round of funding from the National Health and Medical Research Council - the University's best ever result.

The number of grants comprises almost a quarter of the total funding allocated to all NSW universities.

The Australia-wide grants from the prestigious funding body, totalling $561.4 million, were announced today by the Prime Minister, John Howard.

One of the largest sums, a $5.8 million Program Grant, was awarded to a team led by Scientia Professor Gordon Parker at the School of Psychiatry and the Black Dog Institute, for its work on the causes of mood disorders, their differentiation, diagnosis and management.

"We were the first team of mental health researchers in the country to be awarded a Program Grant and this is now the third such award. We are very pleased and privileged to have our work recognised by the NHMRC," Professor Parker says.

Dean of UNSW's Medical Faculty, Professor Peter Smith, says it's a great result for UNSW.

"This is the best NHMRC result ever for the University and we are delighted with the contribution the University's making to medical research in Australia.

"We are particularly delighted that the work of Professor Gordon Parker and his colleagues in the School of Psychiatry and the Black Dog Institute has been awarded the Program Grant recognising their status as the leaders in mental health research in Australia."

Other project grants to begin in 2008 include:

Associate Professor Wendy Jessup from the Centre for Vascular Research; Dr Jane Butler from the School of Medical Sciences; Professor Mark Dadds from the School of Psychology; and the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre's Associate Professors Maree Teesson and Louisa Degenhardt have all been awarded Research Fellowships.

Professor Andrew Carr from St Vincent's Clinical School and Professors Andrew Lloyd and William Rawlinson from the School of Medical Sciences have won Practitioner Fellowships.

For more information, go to the NH&MRC website