SAHMRI. Inspired research, better health for all.
20 March, 2017

A game changer for imaging in South Australia


The South Australian Health and Medical Institute (SAHMRI) is thrilled to launch its partnership with Bellberry Limited to establish the Bellberry Molecular Imaging Program; a project that will allow the development of a series of diagnostic agents that will enhance SAHMRI’s ability to deliver improved healthcare, clinical trial capacity and translational health outcomes.

This partnership will deliver world-class research, which will both attract the pharmaceutical industry and retain the brightest scientists in the field to South Australia.

The importance of imaging

Imaging has become a powerful tool in SAHMRI’s research strategy. In particular, molecular imaging provides the ability to use radiopharmaceuticals to study the functionality and progression of disease. 

This program offers the opportunity to study how diseases may behave differently in individual patients, with important implications in the development of a more personalised approach to disease diagnosis and treatment.

Thanks to this support from Bellberry, South Australians will be able to benefit even more from the state’s only cyclotron that is housed at SAHMRI.

Over the next seven years, tracers will be developed for diseases ranging from bone, breast and prostate cancers, through to Parkinson’s Disease, Epilepsy, and Alzheimer’s Disease.

Molecular imaging permits the ability to locate disease, reveal its individual components, and could potentially also help examine disease mechanisms, and markedly advance the personalisation of disease prevention and treatment.

A partnership to benefit all South Australians

SAHMRI’s Executive Director, Professor Steve Wesselingh, said that the benefits of this partnership with Bellberry are countless.

“The Bellberry Molecular Imaging Program will advance South Australia as a leader in translational biomedical research by improving health outcomes, growing the knowledge economy and attracting industry partners as Australia looks to rapidly expand the health and medical sector as a major economic priority,” Professor Wesselingh said.

“We are incredibly grateful to Bellberry for their support and belief in this program.”

Director of SAHMRI’s cyclotron, Mr Prab Takhar, said that this funding allows the cyclotron to develop a platform that will transform clinical care and research in the state in a very short time frame.

“This funding has already enabled us to begin developing agents, which are being used clinically in the state.”

Bellberry Limited’s Chief Executive, Ms Kylie Sproston, said that Bellberry exists to support research and ethics, to protect the welfare of research participants and to improve research.  

“We are delighted to support the availability of these capabilities at SAHMRI, for the use of researchers throughout the state,” Ms Sproston said.

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SAHMRI is located on the traditional lands of the Kaurna people.

The SAHMRI community acknowledges and pays respect to the Kaurna people as the traditional custodians of the Adelaide region. We also acknowledge the deep feelings of attachment and the relationship of the Kaurna people to their country. We pay our respects to the Kaurna peoples' ancestors and the living Kaurna people today.