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Leader in Rotavirus research recognised with national award

Institute News
Friday, October 8, 2021 - 3:18pm

Murdoch Children’s Research Institute’s (MCRI) Professor Julie Bines, has been recognised as a 2021 Australian Museum Eureka Prize winner for her work in leading the development of RV3-BB, a vaccine that can prevent rotavirus gastroenteritis from birth, potentially saving thousands of young lives. 

Professor Bines’ work on RV3-BB, is making it a safe, effective and affordable newborn rotavirus vaccine; particularly accessible to those in developing countries, where the standard vaccines offered to Australian infants and children can be cost-prohibitive. 

“Rotavirus continues to be a major cause of death in young children and infants around the world, particularly in the poorest countries of Africa and Asia,” said Professor Bines. 

“We’re working with emerging country vaccine manufacturers to produce a safe, effective and affordable vaccine, that has the potential to save many thousands of lives and prevent suffering in many more. 

“This award is a wonderful acknowledgement of the efforts by many over the last four decades – including inspiring clinicians such as Graeme Barnes, Don Cameron, Yati Soenarto, Jim Buttery and Margie Danchin, and Scientists such as Ruth Bishop, Ian Holmes and Carl Kirkwood, and the many, many others who have contributed directly or indirectly to this body of work.” 

In addition to leading the RV3 Rotavirus Vaccine Program at MCRI, Professor Bines is the Victor and Loti Smorgon Professor in the Department of Paediatrics at the University of Melbourne. She is a paediatric gastroenterologist and Head of Clinical Nutrition and Intestinal Rehabilitation at The Royal Children's Hospital. 

The Australian Museum Eureka Prizes are awarded annually, to recognise individuals and organisations who have contributed to science and the understanding of science in Australia.