Murdoch Children's Research Institute (MCRI) is pleased to announce that three of its researchers have been awarded funding from Medical Research Future Fund's Rapid Applied Research Translation (RART) grant scheme through the Melbourne Academic Centre for Health (MACH).

Professor Vicki Anderson and Professor Dinah Reddihough were among those awarded new investigator-led project funding.

Prof Anderson's project aims to halve the rate of children with persisting symptoms following child concussion, through a personalised medicine intervention.

"Despite being an increasing public health concern and a 40 percent rate of debilitating, persisting post-concussive symptoms (PCS), current knowledge regarding child and adolescent concussion is inadequate to direct effective, timely, low cost treatment. To date, clinical management has failed to recognise the vastly different needs of the individual child," she said.

Prof Reddihough is leading a research project that will develop a state-wide approach to preventing hip dislocation for young people with cerebral palsy. Hip displacement is a serious complication of cerebral palsy, occurring in 85 percent of non-ambulant children.

"Hip displacement is a serious complication of cerebral palsy (CP), occurring in 85 percent of non-ambulant children. It develops insidiously. If detected early, treatment is effective. If not, hip dislocation occurs, causing intractable pain, reduced function and quality of life extending across the lifespan. There is no effective treatment for hip dislocation," she said.

To learn more about their projects, visit: 

Professor Harriet Hiscock received funding for her translational research project that is exploring how to improve the care of children with frequent asthma admissions by working with hospitals, GPs and families.

"Asthma is the most common chronic childhood illness and accounts for most paediatric hospital admissions. Approximately one in five Australian children are re-admitted to hospital after their first admission. To prevent frequent, costly admissions, we need to understand factors in a child's care journey associated with re-admissions," she said.

More information about Prof Hiscock's work can be found here:

The aims of the RART funding scheme are to:

  • improve patient experience by improving care pathways and service connections;
  • reduce unwarranted variation in healthcare and patient outcomes;
  • improve the health of certain at-risk groups in Australia, such as Indigenous Australians and
  • support innovative clinical trials.

The MACH offered these two funding opportunities to MACH partner-affiliated researchers (in the form of project grants and research fellowships) to support translational research projects that will produce tangible outcomes of value to the health system within a short period.