Victorian Lions Foundation Programs - Lions Rheumatism and Arthritis Medical Research Foundation

The Victorian Victorian Lions Foundation Inc. was established by the Lions Clubs of Victoria and Southern New South Wales, to support the development of Health and Welfare Programmes for the benefit of the population within the five Lions Club Districts encompassing Victoria and Southern New South Wales.

The primary role of the Foundation is to create a Capital Fund to support the creation of major programmes through liaison with Lions Clubs, Charitable Trusts and Corporations.

The latest donation from Lions Clubs of $78000.00 plus funds from Monash was made to purchase a Tecan Microplate Reader.

Eric Gittins and SCS Head Prof Eric Morand with the M1000 Pro multifunction plate reader

28 Nov 2014

Rheumatoid arthritis patients will benefit from research enabled by state of the art equipment donated by the Lions Club to the School of Clinical Sciences at Monash Health (SCS).

Thanks to the generous donation of $78,000 from the Victorian Lions Club, Australian Lions Foundation and Lions Clubs International Foundation, the Arthritis Research Group in the Centre for Inflammatory Diseases at SCS has been able to purchase a Tecan M1000 Pro multifunctional plate reader.

The Victorian Lions Club has been raising funds for over 30 years for the Victorian Lions Rheumatism & Arthritis Medical Research Foundation," said Lions Club representative and Past District Governor Mr Eric Gittins. "In the last 12 years we have donated well over $300,000 to Monash University for various equipment and facilities."

"We understand that this equipment will facilitate a faster translational response to testing carried out in the laboratory."

Arthritis Research Group leader Dr James Harris said, "this high-end technology allows us to perform multiple types of assays using the one machine.""We can use it for both functional and clinical assays, such as ELISA, luminescence and fluorescence-based protocols."

In lay terms, the new equipment will now allow researchers to perform multiple experiments without having to use different machines for each.

"Now we have this technology in one machine in our lab, we can increase both efficiency and functionality; it lets us design completely new types of studies," added Dr Harris.

Some of the assays used in the laboratory measure levels of immune system proteinsin biological samples, including blood (serum) and cell culture samples.

"In the clinical context, we use assays to look for biomarkers or correlates of disease in arthritis and lupus," said Head of rheumatology at Monash Health, Professor Eric Morand, also Head of SCS.

The new equipment allows scientists to more swiftly develop important insights into the biological mechanisms of arthritis and rheumatic diseases and push their discoveries towards the development of new drugs.

"Overall, it is an incredibly powerful tool that will not only make our day-to-day experiments quicker and more efficient, but will also allow us to expand our repertoire of assays and even design our own."

The Lions Rheumatism and Arthritis Medical research Foundation Australia Website

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