WEHI team granted almost $13 million for parasite fight

07/11/05

The Commonwealth Government, through the NHMRC, has announced Program Grants of $100 million for medical research. Congratulations to the team led by WEHI's Professor Alan Cowman, which has attracted the largest single grant in Australia: $12,940,270.

The team will carry out research into how parasites cause malaria and leishmaniasis in humans; how parasites recognise a human body; how they invade it; how the body responds; and what can be done by drugs or vaccines to disrupt the infection process. The team will also investigate the parasites' chemical composition and metabolic pathways to identify drug targets.

Professor Cowman comments, "The ultimate objective is to develop drugs or vaccines that can either prevent infection with these parasites or to reduce the severity of illness caused if infection does occur."

Other members of the team from WEHI are Dr Brendan Crabb, Dr Emanuela Handman, Dr Louis Schofield and Professor Terry Speed; and from The University of Melbourne, Professor Graham Brown, Dr Malcolm McConville and Associate Professor Geoffrey McFadden.

Source: Eurekalert & others

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