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Clinical Research Training Programs

NCCRED PhD Students

Liam Acheson

Liam is a PhD candidate at the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre at UNSW collaborating with NCCRED for his research focusing on methamphetamine withdrawal treatments. Liam is also working as a research officer for the Alcohol and Drug Service at St. Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney.

His program of research includes a systematic review and meta-analysis of pharmacological treatments of methamphetamine withdrawal (CRD42021224850), a world first clinical trial of lisdexamfetamine for the management of acute methamphetamine withdrawal (ACTRN12621000045819), novel investigation of sleep during stimulant withdrawal and broad investigation into how methamphetamine withdrawal symptoms are measured and managed. His supervisors are Prof Michael Farrell, Dr Krista Siefried, A/Prof Rebecca McKetin and Dr Nadine Ezard.

Prior to this he completed a Masters degree by research looking at trumpet player’s cardiopulmonary physiology and a Bachelors degree in classical music performance. Before entering the research world Liam was a professional tuba player, and still performs as a freelancer around Sydney.

Jack Freestone

Jack is a PHD student enrolled with the Kirby Institute at UNSW, he is supervised by A/Prof Garrett PrestageA/Prof Adam Bourne, Dr Krista Siefried, and Dr Mohamed Hammoud and is working in close collaboration with NCCRED across several research projects relevant to his PhD candidature. Jack is concurrently the Manager of AOD Research and Development Programs at ACON.

Jack’s PhD research comprises of two projects addressing substance use among sexuality and gender diverse communities. In partnership with NCCRED, Thorne Harbour Health and the Western Australian AIDS Council Jack is conducting a multiphase national research project investigating GHB use in LGBTQ communities. This research will focus on the experience of GHB overdose with a view to generating evidence informed and peer led prevention responses. Additionally, in his role at ACON Jack has co-developed a peer led brief intervention program addressing harms associated with sexualised drug use among gay and bisexual men, transgender women, and non-binary people. Throughout his PhD candidature, Jack will monitor and evaluate this program of work.

Prior to commencing his PhD, Jack worked as the Manager of Alcohol and Other Drug Programs at ACON. He has worked with LGBTQ communities across the fields of health promotion, service delivery and evaluation, community development and volunteer management for over seven years.