New health research hub to improve patient care and build health workforce in Victoria’s northern corridor


RMIT University and Northern Health have partnered to establish a Clinical Translation Research Partnership.

Researchers and clinical staff will work together to speed up the translation of innovative diagnostic and therapeutic approaches from the laboratory bench to real-world applications, ultimately benefiting the patients of Northern Health and beyond.

The Clinical Translational Research Partnership will initially focus on research to help patients with cancer, blood disorders and chronic diseases, leveraging RMIT and Northern Health’s strengths in imaging, spectroscopy, immunology and pharmacology.

It will be home to clinical trials, particularly in cancer and nanoparticle diagnostic research, that aim to contribute to breakthrough discoveries, improved patient outcomes, and collaborations with the pharmaceutical industry to bring new treatments, therapies and diagnostics to patients.

The partnership also provides an avenue for workforce development, nurturing a highly skilled talent pool of students capable of driving healthcare innovation. This will help meet the unique workforce needs in the Northern suburbs and target the growing demands in the research and healthcare sectors.

Master’s and PhD positions will be offered to support the partnered research and build the next generation of skilled health researchers.

Northern Health’s catchment includes three of Victoria’s six growth areas and its population is expected to grow over 74 per cent (more than 290,000 people) by 2036.

It is a diverse community, born in more than 230 countries, who speak over 150 different languages and with over 105 different religions or beliefs.

The Clinical Translational Research Partnership will help to meet the needs of this growing population while inspiring the next generation of healthcare workers and driving health research to improve outcomes for future patients.

RMIT University and Northern Health Clinical Translation Research Partnership launchFrom left to right: Professor Catherine Itsiopoulos, Siva Sivarajah, Professor Ian Burnett, Bronwyn Halfpenny MP and Associate Professor Prahlad Ho.

Professor Catherine Itsiopoulos, Associate Deputy Vice Chancellor Bundoora Health Precinct, highlighted the importance of training the healthcare practitioners of the future and equipping them to deliver targeted innovative healthcare.

“Our Clinical Research Translation Partnership will connect clinicians, researchers and academic leaders to ideate and solve healthcare priorities for diverse communities in Melbourne’s north.

“This partnership provides real opportunities to leverage collaboration. We are excited to be enabling immediate translation of evidence-based research in diagnostics, therapeutics and clinical practice focused on cancer, immunology and chronic disease for better patient outcomes.”

Associate Professor Prahlad Ho, Chair, Research Executive Committee at Northern Health, spoke to improving access to quality healthcare for people living north of Melbourne.

“Our Clinical Translational Research Partnership is critical to improve research capabilities across northern Melbourne, including delivery of innovative clinical trial capabilities as well as novel biomarkers in our multicultural population.

“Northern Health’s partnership with RMIT will allow a pipeline for the rapid and effective translation of key technological advances into clinical use.”

/RMIT University News Release. View in full here.