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  • 14 Dec 2020 2:02 PM | Valerie Orton (Administrator)

    Women currently working in the healthcare sector have a final opportunity to register their interest in a scholarship worth up to AUD$5,000 to support participation in an accredited leadership development program.

    Funding must be apportioned promptly, and it is unsure when these grants will be available again. Find out more and register your interest by completing the Expression of Interest form prior to 5pm on Monday, 14 December 2020.

  • 9 Dec 2020 12:45 PM | Valerie Orton (Administrator)

    In an article in Malaghan Institute of Medical Research website, New Zealand’s first clinical trial of CAR T-cell therapy, a revolutionary new approach to fighting cancer, is getting underway after receiving final regulatory approval.

     The phase I safety trial, called ENABLE, is part the of the Malaghan Institute’s research and development of a new version of CAR T-cell technology, in partnership with Wellington Zhaotai Therapies Limited. The trial will involve up to 12 participants with certain types of relapsed and refractory B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma who have exhausted other treatment options.

    Malaghan Institute Clinical Director Dr Robert Weinkove says the production of CAR T-cells is a major step in the development of the Institute’s cell therapy capabilities.

     “Chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapies are being offered to treat certain types of B-cell lymphoma (lymph node cancer) in countries such as Australia and the UK. For this early phase safety trial of a new type of CAR T-cell therapy, we’ll be manufacturing the cells in the dedicated cell therapy suite at the Malaghan Institute in Wellington. 

    “Because the safety and effectiveness are not yet known, this will be a small trial for a limited number of participants. Nonetheless, this is a very exciting milestone, and we hope the experience and knowledge we gain from the ENABLE trial will help more New Zealanders benefit from CAR T-cell therapies in the future.”

    Dr Weinkove says the trial will not be the right option for everyone, and it is important that patients speak with their specialist about their treatment options. “Referrals for the trial can only be accepted from haematologists or oncologists, who will be advised of the criteria and how to refer.”

    Dr Weinkove says the trial is taking place at a single centre, to allow close monitoring of participants, but referrals from other hospitals will be considered. “With support from Leukaemia & Blood Cancer New Zealand, we hope to be able to provide travel and accommodation support for participants from outside our region.”

    For the rest of the article, click here

  • 4 Dec 2020 2:22 PM | Valerie Orton (Administrator)

    Julian Grabek is one of HSANZ / LF's PhD recipients for 2021, and is showing his research skills already.   His work is on Identifying subclones in early phase MPN that drive progression and leukaemic transformation 

    Project summary 

    Myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN) are clonal haematological disorders of stem cells. These stem cells undergo a mutation that drives an overproduction of blood cells.  MPNs include

    • primary myelofibrosis (bone marrow transformation into fibrotic tissue leading to bone marrow failure).

    Throughout the course of the disease the stem cells are driven by specific mutations (JAK2, CALR and MPL) but over time additional genetic mutations are acquired leading to progression of the disease to either secondary myelofibrosis and bone marrow failure or acute myeloid leukaemia. These outcomes have limited treatment options and have a poor prognosis.

    High risk stem cells with the potential to develop into leukaemia can be identified early in the disease but are often a “needle in a haystack” when compared to the rest of the MPN stem cells.  By using cutting edge single cell technology Dr Grabek will separate each individual cell of the MPN stem cells. Through a combination of mutational analysis by novel nanopore technology and assessment of downstream gene signalling he will be able to determine the early stages of leukaemia development in these disorders. In future, he hopes to establish which treatments have the potential to arrest these early changes and prevent transformation to leukaemia.

    for the article on the LF website, click here

  • 1 Dec 2020 9:13 AM | Valerie Orton (Administrator)

    HSANZ Member, Professor John Seymour, Director of Clinical Haematology at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and Royal Melbourne Hospital, has been named as among the most influential in the world in the annual Highly Cited Researchers 2020 list

    The list identifies scientists who have published papers ranking in the top 1% by citations by peers in their field over the past ten years. Among the 6,400 Highly Cited Researchers across 21 fields of the sciences there are 482 named in the clinical sciences section and 199 in immunology research.

    See this article in the limbic for full story 

  • 19 Nov 2020 1:10 PM | Valerie Orton (Administrator)

    HSANZ is pleased to be invited again to partner the American Society of Hematology for the Highlights of ASH series which will be taking place virtually in March 2021. All Members of HSANZ will be entitled to a discounted registration.

    ASH is excited to share additional information in the coming weeks, but the regional meetings originally scheduled to take place in North America (January), the Mediterranean (February), Asia-Pacific (March), and Latin America (April) will be offered as as a collective virtual experience in March 2021. More information about the program and registration will be available in early 2021.

    Meanwhile, here is the 2021 Highlights of ASH website.  As soon as we know more, we will post it here.

  • 10 Nov 2020 4:47 PM | Valerie Orton (Administrator)

    LF has put together a page on our PhD Scholarship recipients.  We thought you might like to see it too.

    Click here

  • 4 Nov 2020 10:18 AM | Valerie Orton (Administrator)

    HSANZ were pleased to be a signatory to the National Strategic Action Plan for Blood Cancer coordinated by the Leukaemia Foundation.

    Blood cancers are one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers in Australia today and one of the biggest causes of cancer death.

    The National Strategic Action Plan for Blood Cancer is a blueprint to coordinate and accelerate national efforts to improve survival and quality of life for people diagnosed with blood cancer and to support their carers and families.

    It identifies four major priorities:

    • Empower patients and their families
    • Accelerate research
    • Enable access to novel and specialised therapies
    • Achieve best practice.

    The National Action Plan was commissioned by the Australian Government and launched by the health Minister in September 2020.

  • 27 Oct 2020 10:18 AM | Valerie Orton (Administrator)

    Announcement of Scholarship and Award recipients

    At the recent HSANZ Education Day and AGM, President Leanne Berkahn and Vice President Steven Lane announced a number of awards.

    Congratulations firstly to three new Life Members of HSANZ:

    Linda Campbell from Melbourne

    Kathryn Crosier from Nelson, New Zealand and

    Paul Vincent from Sydney

    Congratulations to Scholarship and Fellowship awardees 

    Leukaemia Foundation PhD Scholarship recipients:

    Basit Salik - QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute

    Julian Grabek - QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute

    HSANZ New Investigator Clinical Fellowship

    Katherine Creeper

    Allison Barraclough

    The Society wishes to thank Janssen for their contribution to these scholarships

    Albert Baikie Medal and award 

    Danielle Oh 

  • 20 Oct 2020 10:40 AM | Valerie Orton (Administrator)

    The Centre for Blood Transplant and Cell Therapies (CBTCT) brings together the largest allogeneic stem cell transplant units in Australia with a focus on identifying transplant and cell therapy strategies to reduce graft versus host disease and improve patient and disease outcomes after transplant.

    In this webinar series, investigators from the CBTCT will review major topics in stem cell transplantation and cell therapy, highlighting how the activities of the CBTCT are addressing current challenges in stem cell transplantation.

    The final seminar of the 2020 CBTCT webinar series features Professor David Curtis reviewing the significance and potential management approaches to minimal residual disease in the peri-allogeneic blood transplant setting, followed by Professor David Ritchie highlighting the importance of the cellular therapies laboratory with the emergence of commercially available chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapies.


    Professor David Curtis – The Alfred Hospital and Monash University

    Professor David Ritchie – Royal Melbourne Hospital and the University of Melbourne

    When: Monday 26 October 2020, 12pm AEDT

    Link to webinar:

    Link to CBTCT website for all webinar recordings:

    Link for information flyer
  • 7 Oct 2020 1:23 PM | Valerie Orton (Administrator)

    ALLG October Virtual Scientific Meeting

    12 - 16 October 2020

    This is a fully packed five-day event for the Haematology Community – NOT your traditional ‘ALLG clinical trials’ meeting.

    The sessions are diverse with updates in the following streams:  Clinical Practice, How to Treat, Improving Practice and Process in research flow, Educational, Training, Research and Technology updates.

    Speakers are local key leaders, International clinicians, and medical and scientific leaders from industry.

    The SAC are leading x8 disease specific plenary sessions -  by Peter Mollee, Jake Shortt, Nada Hamad, Eliza Hawkes, Tara Cochrane, David Ross, David Yeung, Zoe McQuilten, Stephen Mulligan and Andrew Wei.

    If you are involved in the trial program the Working Party Leaders are conducting smaller research discussion meetings – check your meeting rosters!

    In addition, sessions the membership has indicated they would like to hear more about

    1. Rural/Regional/Teletrials update – Kate Burbury, Jock Simpson and Georgina Hodges.
    2. A NEW classical haematology session lead by Jeff Szer in which we will explore new ideas for research in this space
    3. A COVID Vaccine session as the Thursday evening event. We have been fortunate to have some leading Australians agree to present; Zoe McQuilten, Damian Purcell and Paul Young.

    The associate member event is a half day educational session with key members speaking and will be very high-quality education. Andrew Spencer, IngSoo Tiong, Chun Fong, and Naranie Shanmuganathan.

    The half day  clinical trial operations update for associate members will be an update on key clinical trial processes.

    Next week's sessions includes:

    1. What’s New in Haematology.  Jake Shortt leads a team of x8 members presentations.
    2. Blood Cancer Forum – Partnerships presentations from Andrew Roberts and community Foundations. Great way for members to keep up with the Foundations that support patients services, and hear about Foundation grant programs for 2021.
    3. Welcome new members and congratulations to our 10, 20, 30-year members by Rob Weinkove, an entertaining presentation to create good member vibes!

    HSANZ have a half day Education day on Tuesday 13 October, with the delivery of the Baikie Symposium and the Pitney Fellow address led by HSANZ President Leanne Berkahn and Vice President Steven Lane

    HSANZ has conducted a process to call for abstracts and successful abstracts will be presented.

    Support your colleagues and come along to this important event. This is a big deal in the professional haematologist's career, so join-in and cheer them on!

    Our opening session Monday 8am – 10am features Peter Mollee, Jake Shortt and Tracey Gerber.

    We have Katie Allen MP as a guest speaker and we also have John Seymour and Carrie Hillyard presenting as the National Blood Cancer Taskforce Co-Chairs.

    International speakers!

    This program includes a broad range of expert international presenters from all over the world. Some have provided recorded presentations but many are attending live …don’t’ miss this opportunity for engagement!

    Welcome to the Australia & New Zealand haematology community – Ajai Chari, Peter Borchmann, Gordon Cook, David Kurtz, and Konstanz Dohner

    To register now – please contact Lucy Chesterton 

     Click here for the program


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