Monash to leverage MRFF funds in AMR fight

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Monash University has a new project that aims to use a range of new technologies to help address one of the world's most serious health issues, antimicrobial resistance.

The university welcomed $3.4 million from the federal government's Medical Research Future Fund for a team of its researchers. 

"With the focus on superbugs during World Antimicrobial Resistance Awareness Week (November 18-24), the innovative project will integrate genomics, electronic healthcare data and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to address antimicrobial resistance in the healthcare system," said Monash in a statement.

It said the research will be mainly based at The Alfred. It will also create a tracking and response system that is designed to lead to earlier detection of superbugs, personalised treatment for patients and prevention of outbreaks. 

"SuberbugAi has the potential to save patient lives, prevent superbug spread, and improve healthcare quality, resource use and costs," it said.

According to lead researcher Professor Anton Peleg, “This combination of transformative technologies in medicine provides us with a unique opportunity to develop the future of healthcare – a smart, learning healthcare system that leverages the tens of thousands of data points per patient and infecting pathogens to help predict treatment responses and patient outcomes.

“This project will push the boundaries of what can be achieved in healthcare and how new technologies can be applied to understand how superbugs infect humans and the way they are transmitted within a hospital system.”