Partnership accelerates drug delivery research

29 August 2014

A recent visit by world-renowned polymer chemist Professor Sébastien Perrier was the latest step towards consolidating joint research in nanomedicine that is underpinned by the Monash Warwick Alliance.
Professor Perrier, who has been awarded four prestigious scientific awards spanning four continents in the past 12 months, visited Monash University in June to strengthen his research with Professor Tom Davis from the Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences.

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The long-term collaborators are both Monash Warwick Alliance Joint Professors. Professor Perrier is based at the University of Warwick’s Department of Chemistry while Professor Davis is based at MIPS. They spend considerable time at each other’s university.
Together they design, create and test nanomaterials that can deliver therapeutics drugs directly to a disease site. These materials, designed on a scale at 1/1,000,000 of a millimetre, are set to revolutionise how we diagnose and treat conditions from cancer to heart disease.
Professor Perrier said meeting face to face with his Monash colleagues was essential for strengthening and progressing his research with Professor Davis’ team.
“During my visit we developed a joint research program with a variety of short- and long-term targets, discussed potential PhD projects, and identified funding opportunities,” Professor Perrier said.
It also meant he was on hand to help his new research manager, Dr Joaquín Sanchis-Martínez, settle into the Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, where he will play a pivotal role.
“Dr Sanchis-Martínez spent three months training with me at Warwick to ensure our research is coordinated across the two groups,” Professor Perrier said.
Professor Perrier’s visit extended to the Department of Materials Engineering and School of Chemistry at Monash University, as well as CSIRO, all relevant to polymer research.
Recognised as an outstanding polymer chemistry scientist, Professor Perrier has received the Le Fèvre Memorial Prize from the Australian Academy of Science and the Royal Society’s Wolfson Research Merit Award. In the next two months he will be officially awarded the IUPAC-Samsung Young Polymer Scientist Award from the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry, and the Biomacromolecules/Macromolecules Young Investigator Award from the American Chemical Society.
This year alone he has already published seven research papers in leading journals such as the Journal of the American Chemical Society and Polymer Chemistry.
Professor Perrier said he was looking forward to returning to Monash later this year for a two-month stay at the Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences.
The Monash Warwick Alliance is an innovative approach to higher education that is accelerating the exchange of people, ideas and information between Monash and Warwick Universities.

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