AMPCONTROL PARTNERS WITH WHITELEY IN $5.6M CHRONIC WOUNDS RESEARCH GRANT
• Whiteley Corporation, University of Newcastle, Western Sydney University, and Ampcontrol granted Australian Government Cooperative Research Centres Projects (CRC-P) Program
• Grant to fund industry-lead medical research to solve chronic wound issues, which cost the healthcare system $3.5 billion annually in Australia alone
• $5.6M project to create better patient outcomes, decrease the cost of healthcare, sustain cuttingedge MedTech innovation, and boost jobs in Australian manufacturing
Ampcontrol is partnering with Whiteley Corporation in chronic wounds research after receiving a grant in Round 13 of the Australian Government's Cooperative Research Centres Projects (CRC-P) program which totals $5.6 million over three years.
On 19 January 2023, Minister for Industry and Science, Hon Ed Husic MP, announced $44 million in grants for Australian companies to support 19 collaborative research projects. Cooperative Research Centres Projects support companies working to commercialise cutting-edge ideas in collaboration with researchers and innovators.
Effective management of chronic wounds requires a combination of treatments that include wound debridement, an anti-biofilm treatment, wound mapping, and a deeper tissue perception of bacterial engagement beyond the wound surface, which cannot typically be seen.
This project brings together a collaborative team made up of Whiteley Corporation, ResTech - a joint venture between Ampcontrol and the University of Newcastle - and Western Sydney University to create a singular approach to wound care.
"This work will be of major medical impact worldwide. Chronic wounds start with a minor skin injury that doesn't heal but progresses to a problem costing $3.5 billion in Australia alone," said Associate Professor Greg Whiteley, Executive Chairman of Whiteley Corporation.
"We are thrilled to be a partner in this industry-led medical research collaboration with the Whiteley Corporation, University of Newcastle, and Western Sydney University. The funding enables industry innovators, researchers, students, and end-users to work together to deliver real outcomes for our community and economy," said Ampcontrol Managing Director & CEO Rod Henderson.
The CRC-P grants are awarded through a competitive, merit-based selection process, assessed by an independent committee of industry experts. The CRC-P grants support industry-led research projects, offering matched funding of between $100,000 and $3 million. Grants are for a period of up to three years.
Professor Slade Jensen, from the Western Sydney University's School of Medicine and the Ingham Institute for Applied Medical Research (IIAMR), said "Once established, mature biofilms become recalcitrant to standard therapeutics. However, bacteria within biofilms are not visible to the naked eye. This project provides a rationale for the use of novel strategies to affect microbial biofilms and wound healing directly and indirectly".
Professor Zee Upton, Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Innovation for the University of Newcastle, said, "Our researchers are renowned for finding new ways to help people live better, healthier lives; we also have a strong track record of working with industry partners to turn innovative ideas into realworld solutions".
The strength of industry partnership collaboration was evident at the height of the COVID pandemic when, working with clinicians at John Hunter Hospital, ResTech and Ampcontrol designed and built a fully functional emergency ventilator prototype for NSW Health in less than 18 days. Following clinical trials, the NSW Government selected the prototype to move into pre-production, which Ampcontrol rapidly manufactured in the Hunter region.
"We have shown what can be achieved here in Australia when strong partnerships exist between government, university, and industry. We have proven strength in local manufacturing capability and a highly skilled workforce ready for the next generation of product innovation", adds Mr. Henderson.