Thursday, 18 April 2024

Australia’s first purpose-built facility to deliver human challenge trials opens in Melbourne

27 March 2024 | News

A first of its kind in the southern hemisphere enabling rapid research translation

Australia’s first clinical trial facility specifically commissioned to deliver human challenge trials, Doherty Clinical Trials, was launched recently in East Melbourne by Ben Carroll, Minister for Medical Research and Professor Sharon Lewin AO, Director of the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity (Doherty Institute).

As a not-for-profit registered charity and subsidiary of the University of Melbourne, Doherty Clinical Trials has been established by the Doherty Institute to accelerate the development of novel medicines and vaccines through bespoke early phase clinical trials solutions, including human challenge trials.

The current 25-bed facility is located in the former Peter Mac building in East Melbourne. In the future it will be housed in the Australian Institute for Infectious Disease (AIID), alongside Foundation Partners the Doherty Institute, the University of Melbourne and the Burnet Institute.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Medical Research Ben Carroll said this project builds on the Government's record-breaking investment in medical research and further solidifies Victoria's standing as a world-leader in health sciences.

While human challenge trials have been used to develop new medicines and vaccines globally for decades, this purpose-built facility is the first of its kind in the southern hemisphere, and will build capabilities right in Victoria enabling rapid research translation.

Upcoming human challenge trials will include influenza, Streptococcus pyogenes (Strep A), gonorrhoea and malaria. These studies will be conducted in partnership with Australian and global research teams.


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