Trial to determine effectiveness of COVID-19 prevention measure

A clinical trial has commenced to test the effectiveness of a low-dose regimen of the anti-malarial drug Chloroquine to prevent coronavirus illness.

The clinical trial is being funded by Defence and managed by the national Medical Countermeasures Initiative led by DMTC Limited. Experts with experience in clinical trials from DMTC are working alongside personnel at the trial site, the ADF Malaria and Infectious Diseases Institute.

The trial will focus on military healthcare and civilian healthcare workers at the frontline of the national response to COVID-19.

Chloroquine is a well-known drug that is already used around the world for the prevention and treatment of malaria as well as the treatment of some inflammatory and connective tissue diseases.

DMTC CEO Dr Mark Hodge urged caution in the race to provide answers to combating COVID-19.

“Clinical trials are essential to establish global benchmarks and ultimately to prove whether this drug, at these prescribed dose amounts, can prevent infection,” Dr Hodge said.

“Novel medications can take a long time to get through all the tests and approvals that are needed to confirm safety, quality and effectiveness. Re-purposing of an existing drug with a known safety profile has potential benefits in regard to expediting conclusive results.”

Because its safety profile is well understood, the trial can be undertaken rapidly to the high standards required by Australian and international pharmaceutical regulators. (more…)

Posted by Harry Baxter on May 1st, 2020 Tagged: , , , ,

Celebrating high achievers: Michael Candon & Harry Veivers

Industry Partnership Award – Winners: Harry Veivers and Dr Michael Candon

Dr Michael Candon from RMIT and Harry Veivers from the University of Queensland were announced as joint winners of the Industry Partnership award at the 2020 DMTC Annual Conference.

Dr Michael Candon from RMIT (left) and Mr Harry Veivers from UQ (right) with Thales Australia Chief Technology Officer Dr John Best

The honour was shared in recognition of the pair’s efforts on two different elements of a DMTC project with Thales Australia to design and produce next-generation soldier systems for Australian defence personnel.

Both Dr Candon and Mr Veivers would have met the age qualifier for the Early Career Research Award but the judges decided to consider them in this category as an acknowledgement of the significance of their contribution to Australian industrial capability.

The project consists of a series of parallel technical investigations to take advantage of breakthroughs in lightweighting, digitisation and advanced manufacturing.

Dr Candon’s work has achieved exceptional results, using complex modelling and machine-learning techniques to generate high-fidelity modelling and improve the speed and accuracy of simulated testing procedures.

PhD candidate Harry Veivers’ work is investigating new material for lightweighting and improved thermal management of small arms systems. This work has paved the way for the production of prototypes that are significantly lighter than existing fielded equipment.

Candidate materials and modified manufacturing processes must pass rigorous testing to demonstrate that weight reductions can be achieved without compromising performance, reliability and safety.

Posted by Harry Baxter on March 23rd, 2020

Celebrating high achievers: Project team delivering capability improvements

Capability Improvement Award – Winner: Sustainment of Emergent Materials team

This collaborative team (working under the auspices of DMTC Project Team 5.77) has worked extensively on the development of laser additive deposition (LAD) technology for the past 10 years and has achieved significant outcomes for commercial and Defence customers.

Smiles all-round for members of the team awarded the DMTC Capability Improvement Award for 2020

For defence customers, innovative approaches to, and adoption of new technologies for, sustainment of fleets is crucial, especially in light of the cost pressures associated with life cycle support on military platforms. Through this project and previous enabling research, DMTC has been an integral partner in helping to generate a sovereign industrial capability in Australia in laser repair technology. RUAG Australia has shown repeatedly that repairing components, rather than replacing them, enables Defence to achieve the desired structural performance rates and fleet availability results at a fraction of the cost, and in fractions of the time.

“RUAG Australia continues to be a top performer in innovation in Australia. Working together with DMTC has directly proven that this passionate pursuit of innovation and collaborative research and development ensures solid benefits for all stakeholders,” Neil Matthews, Chief Technical Advisor & Senior Manager Additive Technologies, RUAG Australia said.

This project has not only demonstrated the successful geometrical restoration of actual aircraft components, but also the viability of LAD technology for repair of Defence-grade materials. Researchers from RUAG, Swinburne and RMIT developed and supported the establishment of state-of-the-art sustainment and repair laser cladding facility at RUAG which is now fully operational through the funding of the Defence Capability and Technology Demonstrator (CTD) Program. The work carried out by research partners, RMIT and Swinburne, ensured that the restored Defence components meet certification, operational and design requirements.

Posted by Harry Baxter on March 23rd, 2020 Tagged: , , , , ,