25 Sep A Message from ALHI Chair, Lusia Guthrie
It is with great pleasure that I welcome you to the Australian Lung Health Initiative (ALHI) website. It is a privilege to be tasked with helping to champion the ALHI collaborative effort, which brings so many industry leading innovators together. I am looking forward to the challenge of serving with several Go8 Universities and leading national research organisations.
As you know, ALHI was established to develop a pipeline of world-first lung scanners that are designed to meet the massive unmet need for patient groups such as the elderly and infirm, and ultimately, for paediatric and neonatal patients. Currently, no adequate lung assessment tool exists that can provide functional data for these patients, especially for young children and pre-term babies. Our goal is to change that.
Funded by Stage One of the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) Frontier Health and Medical Research Program, ALHI brings together world-leading Australian scientists, physicists, engineers, medical researchers, respiratory physiologists, data scientists and manufacturers whose vision is to deliver first-in-kind lung imaging devices that effectively use zero radiation to acquire lung images for diagnostic and monitoring applications and/or research purposes.
This will not only propel Australia to the forefront of lung science, but it will also create a new, local hi-tech industry opportunities in Australia.
Proof-of-Concept Studies Underway
ALHI partners are currently embarking on Stage One proof-of-concept studies, generating the data needed to support a detailed research and business plan for the implementation of Stage Two of the ALHI endeavour.
To set the necessary groundwork for the development of new and revolutionary medical imaging devices, ALHI is leveraging the existing Federal and State government support that recently created a world-leading imaging hub at the National Imaging and Fabrication (NIF) node of the South Australia Health & Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) in Adelaide. Funding support announced by the Hon David Pisoni MP, Minister for Skills and Innovation, Government of South Australia in the June 2019 SA state budget allowed the assembly at NIF, of 4Dx’s Permetium™ preclinical scanner, the first of its kind in the country, to be completed in August.
The Permetium™ was designed by 4Dx engineers for the preclinical application of 4Dx’s analytical lung imaging platform, XV Technology™, which is the core technology that ALHI will utilise in the design of its dedicated scanners. We sincerely thank the Federal and SA State governments for providing the funding that has allowed the creation of a world-class translational research ecosystem in Adelaide that will be an integral component of ALHI’s Stage One activities.
The first images using the scanner were acquired in early September and training of 4Dx-dedicated staff, based at SAHMRI, will take place through September.
Interim Board Constituted
While the research and development teams pursue their project work under direction from the Steering Committee, I am looking forward to working with the partners to establish the Board of Directors and lay the foundations that will take ALHI forward into Stage Two.
Earlier this month, we held our first board meeting in Melbourne. As we finalise additional nominations and appointments, I look forward to working with all the ALHI board members and partner organisations to establish a sound governance framework for this ground-breaking venture.
Together, we intend to make an unprecedented impact on lung health worldwide!