SPIRITUS: (4-14) A Monthly update from the Respiratory Technology team at the WIMR.

April 2014.jpg

This is our April 2014 update of news from the Respitech group at the WIMR.

This month the group have been busy hosting guests, traveling interstate to present and participate in a number of events and preparing for the ISAM 2014 conference. Early on in the month, Prof Carsten Ehrhardt (on sabbatical from Trinity college Dublin) gave a presentation to the Institute. Carsten's sabbatical was relatively short as he left us at the end of April, however we now have a number of established collaborations in the area of nasal and pulmonary cell biology which we will continue to work in partnership over the coming years

Early on in the month, a press release regarding formulation development for the Orbital device, by the RespiTech team and Pharmaxis drew attention of local media and resulted in Paul undertaking a number of radio interviews with national broadcasters (you can learn more here).

RespiTech at TSANZ 2014

Members of the Team traveled to the Thoracic Society of Australia and New Zealand (TSANZ) annual meeting in Adelaide where Mehra, Paul and Dany gave three separate talks. Mehra talked about drug transport and the impact of diet on asthma, Paul gave a presentation on advances in treating ventilator associated pneumonia and Daniela gave a podium on repurposing drugs for treating respiratory diseases. The following week, the team were at the annual Drug Delivery Australia meeting in Melbourne (this year linked with the 5th FIP Pharmaceutical Sciences World Congress), where Dany gave a presentation on treating TB by inhalation and how the Orbital device may be the answer.

Also this month, both Paul and Daniela attended the 30th Rebecca Cooper dinner and awards ceremony in Sydney, where Paul collected a Rebecca Cooper Medical Research Grant for the Woolcock Team (Burgess, Oliver, Young) entitled 'Using electric cell-substrate impedance to explore the regulation of angiogenesis in asthma'

As always we welcome and say goodbye to guests and RespiTech Team members. In addition to Carsten's departure, we also say farewell to Wilco. Wilco has made fantastic progress over the past 9 months on 2 projects. One focused on enhancing uptake of poorly soluble drugs in the lung and on treating pulmonary haemorrhage. Wilco is now current travelling around New Zealand before returning to the Netherlands. You can follow Wilco's adventure as we post them on our Facebook page. We wish you well for your future career and you are always welcome back. We also welcome Sumit Arora. Sumit is a PhD student form India that has been awarded a prestigious Endeavour Scholarship to spend time at the Woolcock for 4 months. His work will focus on inhalable anti-fungals.

We would like to congratulate members of the team for recent publications. This month the group have had 4 papers accepted in a number of Journals. Firstly, the group have had a paper accepted in 'Pharm. Res.' with colleagues at Monash University. The paper titled 'Spray characteristics of solution based pressurised metered dose inhalers: effects of formulation and co-flow conditions' uses high-speed schlieren to derive time-resolved velocity, penetration and spreading angle measurements in pMDI spray plumes. The second research paper accepted this month was authored by Alaa Tulbah. The paper accepted in 'AAPS PharmSci Tech' describes 'Novel Simvastatin Inhalation Formulation and Characterisation' for the treatment of hyper-mucosal secretion in bronchiectasis. Additionally, two Review papers were accepted this month. Mehra and YY were corresponding authors on a paper entitled 'Across the pulmonary epithelial barrier: integration of physicochemical properties and human cell models to study pulmonary drug formulations' accepted in 'Pharmacology and Therapeutics, while Wing and Judy were the first two authors on a review entitled 'Recent advances in curcumin nano-formulation for cancer therapy' accepted in 'Expert Opinion on Drug Delivery'. Well done all!

Lastly, April saw the team announce the opening of registration and abstract submission for the 2014 ISAM-Woolcock Conference to be held in Sydney. You can find out more information at the following link (http://woolcock.org.au/isam2014)