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Every week, I sit in the clinical infectious disease meetings at Barwon Health. Every 3-4 weeks, there is a 'bad customer' described that has one or more infected implants, usually in their Hips, caused by biofilms. These can lead to secondary problems with heart valves becoming infected as well. Sometimes these patients cannot undergo revision surgery or have failed such treatments. So are left with no hips. This is usually due to the failure of all currently available antibiotic therapies.

I then return to my fresh faced Undergrad Medical Biotech Class at Deakin University and wonder if they will have the same opportunities as their grandparents and great grandparents have now to get implants to improve their quality of life in old age. Given the rising tide of antibiotic resistant bacteria caused by poor drug stewardship in Medicine and Agriculture, this is increasingly unlikely.

Big Pharma is not very interested in developing new antibiotics due to rapid evolution of resistance to their very expensively produced drugs. So it is now left to academic researchers in Microbiology, like myself, to attempt to develop new treatments.

Please help us to do this by pledging your support.... WON'T SOME ONE THINK OF THE HIPSTERS?

Some Of My Previous Work

I have worked and published peer reviewed articles here and here with chemists at Deakin and Monash, testing novel antimicrobial compounds to be used to make 'Smart Paint' to protect metal from microbial-induced corrosion in the marine environment. We have decided to turn our attention to medical implant infections and have teamed up with the Clinical Infectious Disease Specialists and Orthopedic Surgeons at Barwon Health to set up this project to give it 'Lab Bench to Hospital Bedside' relevance and hope to Identify novel antimicrobial compounds to treat superbug bacterial infections.


How The Funds Will Be Used

To set up an in vitro R&D pipeline (consisting planktonic bacteria models, bacterial biofilm models, tissue culture models) to test novel antimicrobial agents (supplied Collaborators at Deakin and Monash) using glow in the dark (bioluminescent) bacteria and clinical isolates obtained from collaborators at Barwon Health and RMIT. Once set up, it can be used as a high through put model to assess the efficacy and toxicity of novel antimicrobial compounds before further testing.

Project Costs:

$1852.40 to purchase bacteria and life time licence to use Xen29 Bioluminescent bacteria from Caliper Life Sciences
$3660 to purchase 6 x Film Tracer Live/Dead Kits for visualising biofilms
$2000 to buy High resolution confocal microscope time from Bio21 for imaging and assessing biofilms
$2000 to provide chemicals for the production of novel antimicrobials
$1500 Tissue Culture reagents to grow Saos2 and Primary Osetoblasts cells to test compounds for toxicity
$750 to provide Sterile Tissue Culture Plastics & glassware (96 well, 12 well plates, coverslips on which to grow biofilms)

= $11,762.40 total needed to achieve project aims

The Challenges

The challenges are to collect the clinical samples from patients as well as produce novel antimicrobial compounds that are effective against superbugs but at the same time not toxic to bone forming cells that are needed to have bone grafting and healing of new implants.
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on 18th Jun 2014 at 10:41pm. The payment portal is closed now.
A$20 +A cardboard beer mat with the Hips4hipster logo...to help keep your jam jar drinking vessels steady on your milk crate coffee table
19 Chosen | 181 AvailableEst. delivery is August 2014
A$40 +Beer mat plus a ceramic skull, made by Tasmanian Ceramic Artist Kim Foale, made via imprints from detritus retrieved from the stomachs of dead albatrosses sent to her from Marine Scientist Dr Jennifer Lavers.
43 Chosen | 57 AvailableEst. delivery is November 2014
A$75 +Beer Mat, Albatross stomach ceramic skull AND Hips4hipster logo Frisbee....for all your Ultimate Frisbee needs. The flying disk will be made from 100% eco-friendly recycled and biodegradable plastic.
12 Chosen | 88 AvailableEst. delivery is November 2014
A$120 +Beer mat, Ceramic Skull, Eco-Frisbee and a 'Superbug' pertri-dish Christmas tree decoration by Artist Michele Banks ( @artologica )
11 Chosen | 89 AvailableEst. delivery is November 2014
A$400 +All of the previous rewards PLUS a unique piece of Ceramic Art by Kim Foale...inspired by our 'glow in the dark' Superbugs and Biofilms
5 Chosen | 1 AvailableEst. delivery is November 2014