19/11/2019 - 09:42

The benefits of close proximity

19/11/2019 - 09:42

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WHEN the U.S Department of Defence wanted a trial of a new drug that could possibly benefit their soldiers in the field, they did a global search for somewhere that offered quality drug trials and had expert eye doctors and researchers. 

WHEN the U.S Department of Defence wanted a trial of a new drug that could possibly benefit their soldiers in the field, they did a global search for somewhere that offered quality drug trials and had expert eye doctors and researchers. 

Where they landed was Perth. Linear Clinical Research and the Lions Eye Institute (LEI) met the brief. 

Both are internationally recognised and they operate out of adjacent buildings, even sharing some research facilities within the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research.

It’s a QEII hospital campus success story.

Linear, which runs first-in-human drug and new treatment trials for some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies is on the same campus as the LEI, the Harry Perkins Institute, a major teaching hospital, the state’s children’s hospital, the Telethon Kids Institute (TKI), the Ralph Sarich Neuroscience Research Institute, state pathology laboratories and numerous other health services. 

Co-location means the major diseases affecting children and adults are researched and treated on one large campus.

Such a comprehensive health campus attracts international medical experts and leading researchers to our shores. 

Both the TKI and the Harry Perkins Institute often acknowledge the benefits of being able to attract to Perth some of the world’s best. 

A case in point is the new single cell sequencing centre for research on advanced cancer that will officially open next year. 

TKI and the Harry Perkins Institute will jointly house multi-million dollar equipment that will analyse patient tumours and contribute to individualised treatment plans.

Melanoma is another example. WA’s approach to this deadly disease, which now has very good treatment outcomes for some, but not all patients, delivers the best options for patients by expediting the advice process and coordinating treatment plans. 

The WA Kirkbride Melanoma Advisory Service at the Harry Perkins Institute brings together dermatologists, plastic surgeons, researchers, pathologists and oncologists to give coordinated advice to GPs and their patients. 

Early next year a world expert in Melanoma is moving to Perth from Sweden, partly lured by this successful model that brings together all the specialists and links patient cases to research.

Professor Jonas Nilsson is taking up the inaugural Chair in Melanoma. 

He is currently the Director of the Sahlgrenska Cancer Center in Gothenburg, Sweden and he will bring to Perth three experts who will be a part of a new laboratory at Harry Perkins. 

His team focuses on altering immune cells outside a patient’s body so the enhanced immune cells can be reintroduced in large numbers.

It’s a right time, right place story. Perth’s high standard of research and range of facilities helped seal the deal for this Swedish expert. 

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