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Research News
Rapid genomic testing will soon be available to critically unwell Australian babies and children with suspected genetic conditions, as part of four new national genomic research studies launched by Australian Genomics . From next month, the Acute Care Genomics study will enrol infants and children with suspected genetic conditions from intensive care units across much of the country. The study aims to provide genomic test results in as little as five days to quickly pinpoint the cause of the child’s condition and inform their clinical care. Rapid genomic testing is currently only available at a handful of centres worldwide, and the study will be the first to pioneer a national approach to rapid rare disease diagnosis. The Acute Care Genomics study is co-led by A/Prof Zornitza Stark, A/Prof Marcel Dinger, and Dr. Sebastian Lunke. A/Prof Zornitza Stark is a clinical geneticist at Victorian Clinical Genetics Services (a wholly owned not-for-profit...
Research News
A report released today by the Australian Council of Learned Academies (ACOLA) says that precision medicine has the potential to transform Australia’s health care system. Precision medicine combines knowledge of a person’s unique genetic makeup, protein levels, and their environment to allow accurate disease prevention and treatment tailored to individual needs. To date, the main focus has been in well-supported clinical areas, such as cancer, and ‘rare’ single-gene disorders which are a cause of intellectual and physical disability in children. However, The future of precision medicine in Australia report says that opportunities to improve health outcomes for complex disorders, such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease are equally exciting. “With careful planning, advances in precision medicine and the technologies that support it will offer great value for the health of all Australians. Precision medicine is the personalised medicine of the future,” said the chair of the ACOLA expert working group, Professor...
Research News
Researchers have confirmed positive evidence which could potentially give hope to some parents struggling with colic, or excessive crying in newborns. Babies who cry or fuss a lot and can’t be settled are often described as having ‘colic’. We don’t know what causes colic, but we do know it can be hard to handle. The condition, which affects one in five families, is burdensome and is associated with maternal depression, child abuse such as Shaken Baby Syndrome, and early breastfeeding cessation. Up until now, there has been no effective treatment for colic. A new international study led by the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI), in collaboration with 11 other institutions around the world, found the probiotic Lactobacillus reuteri has the potential to provide some reduction in crying in exclusively breastfed babies less than three months old. Researchers found compared to a placebo, the probiotic group was two times more likely...
Institute News
Managing allergies isn’t always easy, particularly at Christmas time when there’s so many Christmas goodies to devour! Thanks to our world-leading allergy research, we’ve put together the ultimate guide for you to enjoy an allergy free Christmas.
Stroke guidelines
Research News
Doctors from the Royal Children’s Hospital and the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute have led the development of Australia’s first ever clinical guidelines that will improve the diagnosis and acute management of children that suffer a stroke. Approximately 300 babies and children are diagnosed with a stroke in Australia each year. More than half of the children that survive have long term disabilities that they carry for their lifetime at great cost to themselves, their families and the healthcare system. These guidelines that have been endorsed by The Stroke Foundation and the Australian and New Zealand Child Neurology Society, will speed up diagnosis when time is critical, to minimise brain injury and improve recovery. A/Prof Mark Mackay, Paediatric Neurologist, Director of the Royal Children’s Stroke Program and researcher with the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, chaired the Australian Childhood Stroke Advisory Committee (ACSAC), which included specialists representing each of Australia’s tertiary paediatric...