VectorLab at Chris O’Brien Lifehouse Australia
VectorLAB at Chris O’Brien Lifehouse is a diverse team of specialist scientists and clinicians working to translate advances in science and technology to help people with cancer. The team was formed over a decade ago when Prof David McKenzie from The University of Sydney and A/Prof Natalka Suchowerska then from the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital recognised their common interest in bringing the benefits of emerging ideas and technologies to the practice of medicine. This collaboration was originally nurtured by a team of radiation oncologists and has achieved several firsts over the last two decades.
The diverse nature of VectorLAB is a unique asset to Chris O’Brien Lifehouse where leading specialist scientists and clinicians from a range of universities and hospitals are brought together into projects to form the most effective team to address urgent clinical problems.
The dominant health challenge of 2020 has been the COVID-19 Pandemic. VectorLAB is helping to overcome it by developing a new way to reducing microbial and viral activity. They are able to do this work with the help of an NHMRC New Ideas Grant awarded in 2019, when their project was recognised by the Marshal and Warren Award for the most innovative research in 2019. This work, in collaboration with Prof Mark Willcox from the University of New South Wales provides early indications that it will have a role to play in the battle against COVID-19 and also reduce the risk of hospital-acquired infections in general. VectorLAB being at the Hospital-University interface is perfectly positioned to progress such research to benefit the community and especially the patients.