UNSW has won its largest number of project grants ever in the latest round of funding from the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC).

Fifty-one UNSW project grant applications were successful, attracting more than $23 million in federal funding - the largest dollar amount awarded by the NHMRC in such grants to the University.

The Australia-wide grants, totalling $357 million, were announced today by the Health Minister Nicola Roxon.

The 51 grants represent a 28 percent increase on last year, the highest increase within the Go8.

The largest UNSW grant, of $1.74 million, was awarded to a team led by Professor John Kaldor from UNSW's National Centre in HIV Epidemiology and Clinical Research. The team is involved in a clinical trial testing best practice aimed at reducing the high rates of sexually transmitted infection in remote Aboriginal communities.

The trial is being conducted in full collaboration with the Aboriginal Medical Service Alliance of the Northern Territory (AMSANT), the NT Government and the Menzies School in Darwin.

"Remote health service have worked hard over a number of years to reduce the level of bacterial STIs, but the results have been uneven. This trial will aim to see whether it's possible to systematically enhance the level of clinical service delivery to make a real difference," Professor Kaldor says.

Another team from UNSW was awarded over a million dollars to help develop new ways to help smokers give up the habit.

"The Quit in General Practice intervention is a flexible approach which involves teamwork between the general practice nurse, the patient's GP and the Quitline," says the team leader, Professor of General Practice Nick Zwar from the School of Public Health and Community Medicine.

"The support for quitting will be primarily provided by the practice nurse but can be adapted to meet the patient's needs and other commitments. The nurse will provide counselling and follow up and assist the patient with information about medicines to assist quitting.

Professor Zwar says that currently patients trying to quit commonly do not access professional help from their doctor, pharmacist or the Quitline but try quitting "cold turkey", but that many subsequently relapse.

Other project grants to begin next year include:

View the full list of NHMRC grants.

Contact: Susi Hamilton | 9385 1583 | susi.hamilton@unsw.edu.au