H1N1 medical research projects fast-tracked

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Summary media release information

08 July 2009
Media Release
Contact for further information: 
Minister Roxon’s office Tel 02 6277 7220 Carolyn Norrie, Tel 02 6217 9342 Mob 0422 008 512 Email carolyn.norrie@nhmrc.gov.au
Today approval and funding was given to 41 Australian medical research projects that will help ensure the Australian Government’s response to the evolving threat of H1N1 is based on the most up-to-date information available. The research will help the Government tailor its response to the spread and nature of the disease, and better equip the Government to help those most at risk from the disease.

$7 million has been provided for these projects from the Government’s peak health and medical research agency, the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC).

The projects cover research from the laboratory to the bedside, from patients to community health, with an emphasis on rapid results to benefit Australians and the rest of the world. The successful applicants are based throughout Australia.

Some of the research to be supported includes:

  • understanding why some people get more severe flu than others;
  • strategies for containment in rural, remote and Indigenous communities
  • improving the detection of swine flu;
  • the best strategies for anti viral use;
  • the prospects for swine flu to interact with other flu strains; and
  • risks to children in hospitals.

NHMRC has fast-tracked a robust international peer review of applications for medical research grants to identify the critical projects that would best shed more light on H1N1.

The peer review process, which can typically take many months, was completed in little more than a week thanks to the involvement of highly-experienced researchers not only in Australia but also from countries including Singapore, New Zealand and the United States.

The quick, collaborative international response seeks to take advantage of the current Australian flu season to learn much more about the virus. The results will be shared internationally, and will be particularly valuable for those countries who are currently preparing for their coming flu season.

Researchers will report their findings at a symposium in December 2009 attended by the Chief Medical Officers of Australia and each state and territory, as well as public health experts.

Media Contact

Minister Roxon’s office: Tel 02 6277 7220

NHMRC: Carolyn Norrie, Tel 02 6217 9342 Mob 0422 008 512

email carolyn.norrie@nhmrc.gov.au

Successful H1N1 grant applications

App ID
Chief Investigator
Administering Institution
State Recommended Budget
585530 Dr Lisa Marie Alleva Trialling agents that could limit influenza disease and improve resistance to secondary infections Australian National University ACT $159,903
585531 A/Prof Paul Kelly Establishing a Rapid Alert System for Severe Respiratory Illness in Adults: The FluCAN Surveillance system Australian National University ACT $268,991
585533 Dr Kamalini Lokuge Surveillance for H1N1 influenza 09 and evaluation of the impact of control measures in prisoner populations Australian National University ACT $58,765
585534 A/Prof Leslee Roberts Transmission dynamics of H1N1 variant in households and schools Australian National University ACT $97,923
585536 Prof Niels Becker Improving Response by Monitoring Incidence and Assessing Seasonality and Specific Interventions Australian National University ACT $125,550
587801 Prof Chris Del Mar Physical interventions to interrupt or reduce the spread of respiratory viruses: an updated systematic review Bond University Qld $83,014
594875 Dr Tony Velkov The structure and receptor binding properties of the 2009 swine influenza pandemic Hemagglutinin Deakin University Vic $179,500
595625 Dr Jennifer McKimm-Breshkin Impact of resistance mutations on sensitivity of A(H1N1) swine flu neuraminidase (NA) to current and novel NA-inhibitors CSIRO Vic $116,742
595996 Prof David Gordon Development of recombinant GPI-anchored haemagglutinin of swine influenza H1N1 for serological and immunological studies Flinders University SA $191,000
601034 Prof Richard Speare Feasible containment strategies for swine influenza H1N1 in rural and remote Indigenous Communities James Cook University Qld $457,750
603750 Prof Suzanne Crowe Immune responses to 2009 H1N1 to assist public health response Burnet Institute Vic $184,712
603752 A/Prof Rosemary Ffrench A centralised facility for immunological monitoring of human H1N1 immunity post infection or vaccination Burnet Institute Vic $184,395
603753 A/Prof Margaret Hellard The epidemiology, transmission and impact of new influenza a (H1N1) on the Victorian community in 2009. Burnet Institute Vic $152,335
604925 A/Prof Heath Kelly Estimating the protective effect of seasonal influenza vaccine against medically attended ILI due to novel influenza A (H1N1) Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory Vic $156,125
604931 Mr Aeron Hurt The role of NA inhibitor treatment and prophylaxis in reducing disease severity and spread of A(H1N1) swine origin virus WHO Collaborating Centre for Reference and Research on Influenza Vic $252,812
604934 Dr Caroline Marshall Do frontline healthcare workers have increased risk of contracting influenza H1N1? A prevalance and risk factor study The University of Melbourne Vic $220,000
604982 A/Prof Heath Kelly Laboratory confirmed novel influenza A(H1N1) and seasonal influenza, Victoria 2009: comparison of the clinical spectrum of disease Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory Vic $55,645
606975 Prof Anthony Harris Impact of an influenza epidemic on the Australian economy Monash University Vic $117,750
606976 Prof Paul Herzog Development of a signature for early responses to influenza strains that determine /correlate with severity of infection, vaccine response and changes in virulence. Monash University Vic $313,063
614290 Prof Gerard FitzGerald Emergency Department impact and patient profile of H1N1 Influenza 09 outbreak in Australia: A national survey Queensland University of Technology Qld $106,136
620240 Prof Michael Parker Swine influenza: Molecular basis of potential resistance to neuraminidase inhibitors St. Vincent’s Institute of Medical Research Vic $97,250
626867 Dr Helen Marshall Evaluating community understanding of and participation in strategies to prevent the spread of H1N1 University of Adelaide SA $185,922
628010 Prof Warwick Blood Public and media understandings of A/H1N1 within a risk communication environment University of Canberra ACT $107,340
628962 Prof Anne Kavanagh H1N1-related Victorian school closures: quarantine compliance and impact of parents’ precarious employment The University of Melbourne Vic $276,974
628965 Dr Katherine Kedzierska Understanding the extent of cross-reactive T cell immunity between H1N1 09 and seasonal influenza strains The University of Melbourne Vic $186,808
628967 Prof Terry Nolan Immunity to novel H1N1 influenza prior to and after immunization with seasonal TIV in children aged 6 months to 9 years The University of Melbourne Vic $59,521
628970 Dr John Stambas Identification of determinants associated with pathogenicity of Swine-Origin 2009 A (H1N1) influenza virus The University of Melbourne Vic $127,250
628974 Dr James McCaw Determining optimal strategies for use of antiviral agents in the 2009/10 A(H1N1) swl influenza epidemic in Australia The University of Melbourne Vic $75,250
628975 Prof David Jackson Is Pam2Cys the new anti-viral against influenza A virus? The University of Melbourne Vic $143,250
628976 A/Prof Joseph Torresi Swine influenza: epidemiology and virology of the Victorian epidemic The University of Melbourne Vic $414,724
628977 Prof John Mathews Models for influenza virulence to explain changes over time and place, including the differences between 1918-19 and 2009 The University of Melbourne Vic $80,250
628980 Dr Lorena Brown Ability of H1N1/09 and seasonal influenza vaccines to reduce symptoms and halt spread of H1N1/09 infection in ferrets The University of Melbourne Vic $290,500
628988 A/Prof Louis Irving Utility of POC predictive blood biomarkers in triage and management of high risk populations The University of Melbourne Vic $191,500
630779 Dr James Wood Optimal use of vaccine to mitigate a second wave of H1N1 2009 influenza in Australia University of New South Wales NSW $78,050
630785 Prof William Rawlinson Novel swine-origin influenza H1N1 09 Quality Assurance University of New South Wales NSW $144,725
630787 Prof Raina MacIntyre Efficacy of face masks against H1N1 swine influenza University of New South Wales NSW $337,563
631098 Prof David Durrheim Australian public’s H1N1 knowledge, risk perception, containment measure adoption and willingness to be vaccinated University of Newcastle NSW $60,896
631720 Prof Mark Kendall Nanopatch immunisation against pandemic Novel A (H1N1) influenza virus 09: potent immunity at a reduced dose The University of Queensland Qld $179,472
633027 Dr Bin Wang Real-time and quantitative monitoring of the emergence of oseltamivir resistance during the current influenza pandemic University of Sydney NSW $183,500
633028 Prof Elizabeth Elliott Characterisation of H1N1 Influenza 09 in hospitalised children using Paediatric Active Enhanced Diseases Surveillance University of Sydney NSW $118,513
633032 Prof Robert Booy An Unblinded randomized study of influenza A/H1N1 09 resistance to oseltamivir and zanamivir National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance of Vaccine Preventable Diseases NSW $149,460
TOTAL >>> $6,970,829