Australian Cancer Foundation Wing

  • Research Institute: Royal Adelaide Hospital

  • Amount granted: $1 million

  • Year granted: 1994

ACRF provided a $1 million grant to the Hanson Centre for Cancer Research at the Royal Adelaide Hospital to allow the centre to extend its space and continue further cancer research programs.

The extensions, known as the Australian Cancer Foundation Wing, were officially opened in August 1995. The grant also enabled the Hanson Centre to recruit two outstanding researchers from overseas, whilst assisting in the advancement of research.

The Hanson Centre is focusing on techniques using protein chemistry and protein engineering to make antagonists to chemokines, substances that are known to be responsible for the trafficking of cells including cancer cells.

Achievements

  • The attraction of cancer researchers with international reputations to work at the Institute.
  • Identified two new tumour suppressor genes that code for molecules that prevent the uncontrolled division and growth of normal breast cells. By understanding how these genes function understanding was gained as to how the normal cells develop into breast cancer. This work was done in conjunction with the identification of new molecular targets for anti-cancer drugs.
  • Research on chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML) is a major focus at the Hanson Institute of Cancer Research seeking to maximise the effectiveness of new treatments in the face of the body’s own resistance to these treatments.
  • Investigation of novel immune stimulating drugs, such as imatinib, that specifically targets the causative defect in CML. In 2003 the group identified several gene mutations that made the leukaemic cells resistant to imatinib and this allowed the identification of patients most likely to relapse when the imatinib treatment is applied.
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