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Using antifungal treatments to prevent infection in people with blood cancers and those undergoing bone marrow transplants

Julian Lindsay
Julian Lindsay, National Centre for Infection in Cancer at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre (Melbourne), and The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centre (Seattle, USA)
Funding period: 2020-2023

This PhD is kindly supported by the Frederiks Foundation in honour of Cor and Helene Frederiks.

Julian Lindsay is a Bone Marrow Transplant Pharmacist at Royal North Shore Hospital in Sydney, Australia and a research fellow and PhD candidate at the National Centre for Infection in Cancer (NCIC) at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.

The aim of this research is to prevent infections in patients with blood cancers and those undergoing bone marrow transplants. Because of highly suppressed immune systems from chemotherapy and transplantation techniques used to achieve better cure rates, infections such as cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus and invasive fungal infections are a major cause of morbidity and mortality in these patients.

This project aims to address the critical knowledge gaps related to specific patient risk factors for developing these infections as well as the optimization of antimicrobial therapies to prevent infections and improve the survival of these patients. Specifically, the research will centre around the optimization of antifungal prophylaxis, involving large scale clinical studies of patient outcomes when using different antifungal medications, as well as optimisation of antifungal dosing using pharmacogenomic testing to improve outcomes.

Julian will be conducting this research in a world leading US cancer care centre in Seattle – The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centre – in conjunction with the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne, Australia.

PhD scholarships are co-funded by the Leukaemia Foundation and the Haematology Society of Australia and New Zealand (HSANZ).