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2016/17 Collaborations

This year we have been successful, along with external partners, in new grant applications totalling $10.5 million (over the lifetime of the grants). A large proportion of the funding has been awarded to two significant partnerships, each of which has built on past, smaller collaborations with one or more of the partners.

The first is an Industrial Transformation Training Centre, funded by the Australian Research Council (ARC). This centre is one of only six industrial transformation centres announced nationally across a range of industries, and is one of only two in the health sector. The centre, known as the Centre for Biopharmaceutical Innovation (CBI), aims to transform Australia’s growing biopharmaceutical industry by training industry-ready postgraduates and post-doctoral fellows.

Research at the CBI will focus on developing and manufacturing new biologically based therapies and training a cohort of specialist scientists in industry relevant research.

The Centre will be based at the University of Queensland, integrating industry partners CSL, (Australia’s largest biotechnology company), Patheon Biologics ( a major international Contract Manufacturing Organisation, and Australia’s first large contract manufacturer of biopharmaceuticals), GE Healthcare (a supplier of high tech equipment and instrumentation), and the Blood Service. The Centre has received funding of $4.3 million from the ARC over five years.

The Blood Service will also be part of a new National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Centre of Research Excellence, known as APPRISE (Australian Partnership for Preparedness Research on Infectious Disease Emergencies). The partnership brings together experts in “four pillars” of clinical research, public health, laboratory research and culturally and linguistically diverse communities to co-ordinate a strategic, collaborative national approach to infectious disease preparedness. These areas are supported by cross-disciplinary involvement of specialists in ethics, data management, education and training, and leadership and integration.

There are ten participating institutions in the partnership, including universities throughout Australia, the Kirby Institute, the Menzies School of Health Research and the Blood Service.

APPRISE has a total budget over five years of over $4.9 million.