New industry-research partnership accelerates Medtech innovation in Melbourne


Australian medical device company Signature Orthopaedics is partnering with leading Medtech researchers at the University of Melbourne and RMIT University.

The three-way strategic partnership connects research excellence in the fields of biomedical engineering, health, medicine, technology development and design with one of Australia’s most innovative Medtech enterprises.

Signature Orthopaedics CEO Declan Brazil said their focus would be collaborative R&D in specific areas of clinical and technological innovation.

“Together we will develop a clinical test bed for new materials, designs and methods in orthopaedic implants and devices, and connect our joint talent to amplify scientific and industry leadership across Australia’s growing Medtech sector,” he said.

“This partnership’s goal is to bring to market new and personalised medical implant technologies that can improve health outcomes and quality of life.”

Distinguished Professor Milan Brandt, Dr Declan Brazil and Professor Peter Lee signing the three-way partnership.Distinguished Professor Milan Brandt, Dr Declan Brazil and Professor Peter Lee signing the three-way partnership.

The partnership strengthens Melbourne’s position as an emerging hub for Medtech research, teaching, and commercialisation, as well as RMIT and the University of Melbourne’s roles as major players in the sector.

It also complements considerable investments by the two universities, plus the Victorian Government, into Medtech training and skills development.

Other joint initiatives to date include the Victorian Medtech Skills and Devices Hub and state-of-the-art facilities at the Aikenhead Centre for Medical Discovery, which will be Australia’s premier biomedical engineering research translation centre opening in 2025.

RMIT’s Distinguished Professor Milan Brandt, Technical Director of RMIT’s Advanced Manufacturing Precinct has a long history of collaboration with medical device manufacturers, including Signature Orthopaedics.

“This partnership not only brings the three organisations closer in terms of research opportunities in healthcare but also has the potential to generate new medical products and processes of significant benefit to patients locally and globally,” he said.

While the partners already have a strong track record of collaboration, the first projects under this new three-way partnership will be announced in coming months.

Dr Declan Brazil taking researchers on a tour of the signature orthopaedics manufacturing facility.Dr Declan Brazil taking researchers on a tour of the signature orthopaedics manufacturing facility.

Deputy Head of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Melbourne, Professor Peter Lee, said those projects would be exemplars for how university researchers and students can collaborate on research that directly impacts people’s lives.

“The advantages of working directly with implant manufacturers such as Signature Orthopaedics and with clinicians from hospitals at the early stages of the project are immense,” he said.

“It enables us to identify the project’s ‘pain points’ early and develop solutions to overcome them. Unlike the traditional idea of prototyping when technology is nearly finalised, this partnership will accelerate our research for clinical applications benefiting patients.”

Signature Orthopaedics – established in Sydney in 2009 by Dr Declan Brazil – is the only manufacturer of implantable orthopaedic devices in Australia.

Rapid growth in demand for their products has led to the establishment of additional manufacturing and distribution facilities in Europe and North America.

Signature Orthopaedics manufactures products under its own brand, as well as for other well-known brand devices including hip and knee joint replacements, spinal, osseointegration, osteosynthesis and soft tissue repair implants.

/RMIT University News Release. View in full here.