Over $17m to support world leading medical research at Monash

A project to commercialise the world’s first fully implantable artificial heart and research into rare cancers and diseases such as silicosis are among Monash University projects sharing in more than $17 million from the latest Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) grants.

The federally-funded MRFF is designed to deliver better and more advanced health care for all Australians. It supports researchers to make the next big medical discovery that has the potential to improve health outcomes for patients and entire communities.

Monash is leading nine projects that received funding in the latest round of grants, which are focused on some of the most pressing medical research issues of the time.

Monash University President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Margaret Gardner AC said the MRFF funding supported Monash researchers in their work to improve outcomes for patients and communities locally and globally.

“We welcome this funding commitment to help progress world-leading research projects by Monash academics and their collaborators, and converting them into measurable health benefits,” Professor Gardner said.

Provost and Senior Vice-President, Professor Marc Parlange, said the outcomes demonstrated the remarkable scope of Monash University’s leadership in biomedical innovation.

“Monash is recognised internationally for delivering transformative impact in health research. Today’s announcement from Australia’s Medical Research Future Fund enhances that reputation even further.”

“My warmest congratulations to our Monash researchers who have been awarded funding.”

The projects under the latest MRFF grants round are: 

Commercialising the world’s first fully implantable artificial heart

Professor David Kaye and Dr Shaun Gregory are part of a multidisciplinary team across Medicine and Engineering.

The protective effect of maternal immunisation on obstetric outcomes: characterising the underlying mechanisms and impact on newborn immune function

Associate Professor Michelle Giles, infectious diseases physician specialising in infections in pregnancy and maternal immunisation.

Emerging techniques for earlier diagnosis and assessment of severity and progression of artificial stone silicosis

Emeritus Professor Malcolm Sim AM, head of the Monash Centre for Occupational and Environmental Health in the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, and Professor Meng Law, from the Department of Neuroscience in the Central Clinical School.

Benchmarking for healthy stores in remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities 

Associate Professor Julie Brimblecombe’s research is focused on providing evidence to address inequities in food supply and food access for remote Indigenous communities.

Optimising the delivery of antenatal interventions in public healthcare: Improving equity, access and engagement for better maternal and neonatal health outcomes

Dr Cheryce Harrison, Senior Research Fellow and co-lead of the Healthy Lifestyle Stream at the Monash Centre for Health Research and Implementation.

INTERCEPT (Investigating Novel Therapy to target Early Relapse and Clonal Evolution as Pre-emptive Therapy in acute myeloid leukemia): a multi-arm, precision-based, recursive, platform trial 

Adjunct Associate Professor Andrew Wei, Australian Centre for Blood Diseases at Monash University.

Addressing unmet needs for patients with blood cancers: Immunoglobulin or antibiotics to prevent infection in the RATIONALISE clinical trial

Professor Erica Wood, from Monash Public Health and Preventive Medicine Head of the Transfusion Research Unit at DEPM and an NHMRC Leadership Fellow. Professor Orla Morrissey from Monash Central Clinical School and Burnet Institute.

Third Degree Burn Wound Closure using Engineered Skin- Phase I Clinical Trial 

Dr Heather Cleland, Director, Skin Bioengineering Laboratory, Monash University.

Preventing bones loss and restoring sexual function in women with premature ovarian insufficiency; a randomised controlled trial

Professor Sue Davis, National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia Senior Principal Research Fellow, Professor of Women’s Health in the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences

Potential of the NLRP3 inflammasome as a biomarker and therapeutic target in silicosis 

Adjunct Associate Professor Michelle Tate, Hudson Institute – Centre for Innate Immunity and Infectious Disease.

MOTIVATE C: The Methodical evaluation and Optimisation of Targeted IncentiVes for Accessing Treatment of Early stage hepatitis C

Associate Professor Joseph Doyle from the Monash Central Clinical School, Dr Alisa Pedrana from the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, with the University of Sydney.

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