A clinical trial led by researchers at the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI), the University of Adelaide and the Women’s and Children’s Hospital has been presented with the 2018 Australian Clinical Trials Alliance’s (ACTA) ‘Excellence in Trial Statistics’ award. The N3RO clinical trial investigated whether giving preterm infants born less than 29 weeks’ gestation an extra supply of the omega-3 docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) improves important respiratory outcomes associated with being born early.

The ACTA National Tribute and Awards Ceremony, held in celebration of International Clinical Trials Day, was established in 2016 to recognise and celebrate the outstanding achievements of ACTA members who advance clinical practice and save or improve the lives of patients every year through collaborative, multicentre, investigator-driven clinical trials.

The NMC CRE was officially launched at the Women’s & Children’s Hospital with an audience of over 70 guests from the many collaborative institutions related to the CRE. The guest speakers included Prof Steve Wesselingh (SAHMRI, Executive Director), Ms Lindsey Gough (WCH, CEO) and Prof Ian Symonds (UA, Adelaide Medical School Dean and Head). The launch was opened by Aunty May Turner giving a traditional Welcome to Country.

The Aboriginal Family and Baby Bundles Research Study project led by perinatal epidemiologist Philippa Middleton will investigate ways of preventing obesity in pregnant Aboriginal women aged 18-24 in an effort to improve health outcomes for mothers and babies. Obesity has profound consequences for a woman’s health in pregnancy and later life, and increases the risk of poor birth outcomes.

Tim Green is Chief Investigator for a Nutrition International grant: Optimizing weekly folic acid with iron for the prevention of Neural Tube Defects: a randomized control school based study in Malaysia. Neural tube defects (NTDs) are serious birth defects of the brain and spine that contribute to 29% of neonatal congenital abnormality deaths in low income countries, caused in part by folic acid deficiency. The trial will examine the effects of three different weekly folic acid doses and will inform WHO guidelines on the optimal weekly dose of folic acid needed to safely and effectively prevent NTD-affected pregnancies in adolescent girls worldwide.

As a follow up to our N3RO Trial (N-3 fatty acids for improvement in Respiratory Outcomes), which showed that giving extra omega 3 fats to babies born <29 weeks has no effect on chronic lung disease and may indeed increase risk, we are investigating what the important longer-term effects at 5-years of age of extra DHA in the first months of life for babies born 3 to 4 months prematurely by assessing the children’s mental development.

A clinical trial led by Associate Professor Carmel Collins and funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council. For further information please contact Jacqueline.Gould@sahmri.com

This a randomised trial, funded by NHMRC, to evaluate a user-controlled, personalised and interactive mobile phone tool to support and facilitate maternal fetal movement awareness and reporting of decreased fetal movements

Dr Karen Best from our Child Nutrition Research Centre, SAHMRI Healthy Mothers Babies and Children talks about the importance of clinical trials and how she got into this research field.

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

The SAHMRI community acknowledges and respects the traditional owners, the family clans who are the Kaurna Nation from the Adelaide Plains region of South Australia. We acknowledge the clans of the Kaurna Nation and the sacred knowledge they hold for their country. We pay our respects to the Kaurna Nation, their ancestors and the descendants of these living family clans today.