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Professor Vera Ignjatovic
Professor Ignjatovic is the Group Leader of Haematology Research at Murdoch Children's Research Institute. She leads a highly productive, internationally competitive research laboratory in the field of paediatric thrombosis and haemostasis (aka kids' blood).
Vera's team is acknowledged as being at the forefront of paediatric haemostasis research internationally, as well as being the only team focusing on this field nationally. Professor Ignjatovic has strong collaborations with other national and international cross-disciplinary teams.
Professor Ignjatovic pioneered the world-first studies of the effect, pharmacokinetics and strategies for monitoring of anticoagulants in children. She established the first age-specific reference ranges for coagulation proteins in Australian neonates and children. This data was converted into 5000 cards distributed to haematology laboratories worldwide and clinical guidelines adopted nationally and internationally. Other studies have resulted in the incorporation of point-of-care monitors into home monitoring of Warfarin therapy at the Royal Children's Hospital (RCH).
Vera is the co-chair of the International Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH) Plasma Coagulation Inhibitors Scientific Committee and serves as an editor for journals Thrombosis and Haemostasis and Thrombosis Research.
Vera's research efforts also include the use of proteomic studies in the paediatric setting, where she established for the first time the concept of "ageing of the plasma proteome", and subsequently the concept of Developmental Proteomics. She is also the co-founder and Chair of the Pediatric Proteome (PediOme) initiative established to support and facilitate studies of proteomics in the paediatric setting, a part of the Human Proteome Organisation (HUPO) and co-chair of the Plasma Proteome Project HUPO initiative.
Vera is an advocate for diversity, inclusion and gender equality, and is a member of the Women in Science Parkville Precinct (WiSPP) committee.
- Professorial fellow, Department of Paediatrics, The University of Melbourne
- Clinical Scientist Funding Award – Human Proteome Organisation, 2014
- Scientific Visits to Europe Award – Australian Academy of Science, 2010
- Young Investigator Award – International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis, 2009
- Clinical Fellowship Award – Sanofi Aventis/International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis, 2007
- Young Investigator Award - International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis, 2007
- Travelling Fellowship – Royal Children's Hospital, 2003
- Travel Fellowship - Haematology Society of Australia and New Zealand, 2003
- Travelling Fellowship - Paediatric Research Society of Australia and New Zealand, 2003
Professor Ignjatovic's research focuses on the concept known as Developmental Haemostasis, which describes that the blood clotting (haemostatic) system develops (matures) with age. It is specifically the differences in the haemostatic system between newborns and children as compared to adults that are thought to provide an added level of protection to younger populations from bleeding and clotting events.
Her research focuses on investigating the age-specific structure-function relationships of haemostatic proteins and how these contribute to interaction of haemostatic proteins with clinically relevant medicines such as heparin. The major aims being to improve understanding and treatment of blood clotting disorders in children; to better understand, use and monitor anticoagulation therapy in children, as well as to understand why the younger infants and children are less prone to spontaneous bleeding and clotting events, which will in turn advance our ability to protect adults from such events and to develop effective treatment strategies.
In 2008 Prof Ignjatovic added proteomics to her research portfolio, with particular emphasis on investigations of age-specific differences in the plasma and platelet proteomes and how these differences contribute to the process of ageing. She has for the first time described the concept of "Ageing of the plasma proteome" and pioneered studies focusing on changes in plasma proteome in the setting of cardiac surgery.
She aims to continue to place Australia at the forefront of paediatric thrombosis and haemostasis, translating research outcomes into practice and improving the health of individuals worldwide.
- Personalised Anticoagulation
- Blood clot formation and structure
- Platelet phenotype and function
- Structural differences in Antithrombin
- Bleeding and Thrombotic outcomes post-FONTAN surgery
Karlaftis V, Sritharan G, Attard C, Monagle P, Ignjatovic V. Beta (ß)-Antithrombin Activity in Children and Adults: Implications for heparin therapy in infants and children. Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis. 2014;12(7):1141-1144.
Monagle P, Attard C, Karlaftis V, Ignjatovic V. Personalised anticoagulation approach to improve the prevention and treatment of thrombosis. Thrombosis Research. 2014;134(1): 204-206.
Attard C, van der Straaten T, Karlaftis V, Monagle P, Ignjatovic V. Developmental haemostasis: age-specific differences in the quantity of haemostatic proteins. Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis . 2013;11(10):1850-4.
Yip C, Ignjatovic V, Attard C, Monagle P, Linden M. First report of elevated monocyte-platelet aggregates in healthy children. PLoS ONE . 2013;8(6):e67416.
Hepponstall M, Ignjatovic V, Binos S, Monagle P, Jones B, Cheung M.H.H, d'Udekem Y, Konstantinov I.E. Remote Ischemic Preconditioning Modifies Plasma Proteome in Humans. PLoS ONE. 2012;7(11): e48284.
Attard C, Monagle P, Kubitza D, Ignjatovic V. The in vitro anticoagulant effect of Rivaroxaban in children. Thrombosis Research. 2012;130(5):804-7.
Ignjatovic V, Kenet G, Monagle P. Developmental Haemostasis: Recommendations for laboratories reporting paediatric samples. Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis. 2012;10(2)298-300.
Ignjatovic V, Lai C, Summerhayes R, Mathesius U, Tawfilis S, Perugini MA, Monagle P. Age-related differences in plasma proteins: how plasma proteins change from neonates to adults. PLoS ONE. 2011;6(2): e17213.
Ignjatovic V, Ilhan A, Monagle P. Evidence for age-related differences in human fibrinogen. Blood Coagulation and Fibrinolysis. 2011;22(2): 110–7.
Ignjatovic V, Straka E, Summerhayes R, Monagle P. Age-specific differences in binding of heparin to plasma proteins. Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis. 2010;8(6):1290-1294.