Executive Dean's Lecture

Executive Dean's Lecture

Event Name Executive Dean's Lecture
Start Date 29 Jun 2018 12:00 pm
End Date 29 Jun 2018 1:00 pm
Duration 1 hour

Executive Dean's Lecture Series: Professor Kathryn North AM. 

PDF of Professor North's presentation.

Genomics and the Brave New World of Personalised Medicine:  A Global and Local Perspective

Kathryn North AM

Director, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute

David Danks Professor of Child Health Research, University of Melbourne

Genomics is already having a huge impact on our ability to diagnose and understand of a range of disorders, and to target therapies to the individual. However, effective integration of this “disruptive technology” into everyday clinical practice will require a “whole-of-system” approach that builds on existing expertise. In Australia, we also need to overcome the “state/federal divide” in the funding of genetic testing to develop a cohesive national approach that is cost effective and provides equitable access.

Australian Genomics is an NHMRC-funded national collaborative network committed to implementing genomic medicine within Australia and providing evidence to inform policy and practice. Australian Genomics comprises over 80 partner organisations including the diagnostic pathology and clinical genetics services of all Australian States and Territories, along with the major research and academic institutions and peak professional bodies. Australian Genomics has four major work programs oriented around different challenges to integrating genomic medicine into Australian health care. These comprise a national diagnostic and research network; a federated data infrastructure; a focus on regulatory, economic policy and examination of the barriers to implementation; and an education, ethics and workforce focus. Our clinical programs are currently piloting genomic medicine for patients with rare diseases or cancers across multiple Flagships. Each Flagship project is examining the clinical utility of a variety of genomic sequencing technologies and using the resulting data to support data sharing and inform the regulatory, ethical, economic, policy and workforce infrastructure required to integrate genomics as a key part of the Australian health system.

Australian Genomics is also a leading member and driver project of the Global Alliance for Genomics and Health, an organisation of over 500 of the world’s leading biomedical research institutions, healthcare providers, information technology and life science companies, funders of research, and disease and patient advocacy organisations. The Global Alliance aims to accelerate the world-wide effort to responsibly aggregate, analyse and share large amounts of genomic and clinical information to advance the understanding, diagnosis, and treatment for cancer, inherited diseases, infectious diseases, and drug responses.

Speaker profile

Professor Kathryn North AM is the Director of the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute and the David Danks Professor of Child Health Research at the University of Melbourne.

Professor North is trained as a physician, neurologist and clinical geneticist and was awarded a doctorate for research in neurogenetics. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Harvard Genetics Program.

Professor North is a national and international leader in Genomic medicine.  In 2014, she was appointed as Vice Chair of the Global Alliance for Genomics and Health – a collaborative network of over 500 organisations across over 45 countries funded by the NIH and the Wellcome Trust. Commencing in 2016, she leads an NHMRC-funded national network of over 80 institutions -  the Australian Genomics Health Alliance.

Professor North has received a number of awards including the GSK Australia Award for Research Excellence (2011), the Ramaciotti Medal  for Excellence in Biomedical Research (2012) and Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for service to medicine in the field of neuromuscular and neurogenetics research (2012). She chairs the NHMRC Research Committee and International Advisory Board of the Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health (UK) and is a member of the Board of the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre.

Need more information?

Contact AIHI on 02 9850 2400 or email aihi@mq.edu.au

Content owner: Australian Institute of Health Innovation Last updated: 23 May 2018 11:49am

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