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A vital tool to study virus evolution in the test tube

Variants of viruses, such as that causing COVID-19, can now be quickly studied in the laboratory, even before they emerge in nature and become a major public health challenge.


Discovery gives hope of detecting and preventing the spread of prostate cancer

New research by The University of Queensland and QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute has revealed how lowering cholesterol could potentially prevent or help stop the spread of prostate cancer.


New theory could mean the light at the end of the tunnel for people with endometriosis

Around 1 in 9 Australian women will suffer from endometriosis at some point in their life. With Endometriosis, tissue similar to the lining of the uterus (the endometrium) grows in other parts of the body, often causing severe symptoms that puts life on hold during a woman’s period. Typically treatment focuses on pain management using medication or hormone therapy, and often laparoscopic surgery to remove scarring and adhesions on the reproductive organs, bladder, bowel and other affected organs. There is no currently cure. Now a new theory has been developed by researchers at Canada’s Simon Fraser University (SFU) that suggests a previously overlooked hormone, testosterone, has a critical role in the development of endometriosis. Their research could have direct impacts on diagnosis and treatment of the disease, signalling hope for women worldwide.


Australian research comes closer to a universal flu vaccine for Indigenous people across the world

Australian researchers say they have taken an "important step forward" in developing a universal T cell-based influenza vaccine that would be more effective for Indigenous people worldwide.


Queensland researchers develop direct-acting antiviral to treat COVID-19

A team of Australian and US scientists from Menzies Health Institute Queensland (MHIQ) at Griffith University and from US research institute City of Hope, has developed an experimental direct-acting antiviral therapy to treat COVID-19. Lead researcher Professor Nigel McMillan from MHIQ said: "It causes the genome to be destroyed and the virus can't grow anymore. So we inject the nanoparticles and they go and find the virus and destroy it just like a heat-seeking missile."


Jab-free dengue immunity could be just a click away

A dengue virus vaccine candidate has passed an important milestone, with promising results in animal model testing providing hope to the 390 million people infected every year. The University of Queensland-developed vaccine candidate, applied to the skin via the high-density microarray patch (HD-MAP), has produced a protective immune response in dengue-infected mice.


New Qld study - More nurses lead to fewer patient deaths and readmissions, shorter hospital stays, and savings

A study across 55 Queensland hospitals suggests that a recent state policy to introduce a minimum ratio of one nurse to four patients for day shifts has successfully improved patient care, with a 7% drop in the chance of death and readmission, and 3% reduction in length of stay for every one less patient a nurse has on their workload.


New Australian pregnancy physical activity guidelines recommended

A set of physical activity for pregnancy guidelines, developed by The University of Queensland and CQUniversity, was released by the Australian Government Department of Health on Mother's Day.


Replacing IV infusion sets in hospital patients weekly does not increase infection risk

Australian researchers hope to save significant time, money and resources in hospital wards, with findings from a new University of Queensland-led study published in The Lancet.


Long COVID/Post-Acute COVID-19 Syndrome (PACS) a punch

A significant proportion of patients who recovered from acute COVID-19 illness are now reporting post-acute COVID-19 syndrome (PACS), a lingering ailment also known as “long COVID” or “post-COVID syndrome”. Patients with post-acute COVID-19 syndrome generally experience COVID-like symptoms lasting weeks after their acute COVID-19 illness. Symptoms include fatigue, joint pain, chest pain, palpitations, shortness of breath, as well as some neurologic and psychiatric manifestations including anxiety, headache, loss of taste or smell, and cognitive impairment (i.e. “brain fog”). These symptoms are vague and difficult to quantify, making unbiased study of this syndrome a challenge.