ACU and OBI to establish joint biotech centre

Monday, 19 December 2011

Monday 19 December 2011: Australian Catholic University (ACU) and the O’Brien Institute (OBI) today signed an agreement to establish the joint Centre for Regenerative Wound Healing.

The O’Brien Institute was established more than 40 years ago to promote research and training in microsurgery. It has since made headlines with operations such as Australia’s first hand transplant, the reattachment of a woman's face and the growing of a new ear.

The new Centre, based at St Vincent’s Hospital in Fitzroy, Melbourne, will focus on research, new technologies and health care initiatives in the areas of wound healing and tissue engineering.

Head of the O’Brien Institute, Professor Wayne Morrison, said the joint venture would help put Australia at the forefront of bringing tissue engineering to the clinic. 

“The presence of ACU allied health professionals and students at St Vincent’s Hospital align perfectly with OBI’s role of translating their research into clinical applications,” he said.

Professor Thomas Martin, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) at ACU, said the agreement would also provide both higher education career pathways and unique research training opportunities for nursing and other allied health students and professionals.

“ACU has a proud and long-standing tradition of excellence in the health sciences and it is our great honour to be affiliated with the O’Brien Institute through this new venture,” he said.

“OBI is the largest surgical Institute dedicated to the advancement of microsurgical reconstruction and research in the world, and with synergies created through the powerful combination of intellectual effort, academic rigour and the applied experience of medical, biomedical and allied health research specialists, I am certain that we will see great things from our new joint Centre that will benefit the global community.”