Cutting edge microscope to help find a cure for paralysis


A state-of-the-art livecyte microscope, funded by the Perry Cross Spinal Research Foundation, through the support of our incredible donors, was unveiled at the Griffith Institute for Drug Discovery and is leading the Spinal Injury Project team toward human clinical trials. 

In a celebration of cutting-edge research and technological innovation The Honourable Dame Quentin Bryce AD CVO, Hon DUniv (Griffith), patron of the Foundation, unveiled the Phasefocus2 Livecyte microscope and plaque.

The microscope represents a significant advancement in scientific instrumentation and is set to revolutionise the Spinal Injury Project undertaken by the Clem Jones Centre for Neurobiology and Stem Cell Research at Griffith University. It will enable the research team to perform critical cell analysis and screening procedures, a crucial step toward the cell transplantation and rehabilitation human clinical trials commencing shortly. 

The clinical trial aims to test cell transplantation therapy to repair spinal cord injury, ultimately leading to the restoration of function. Professor James St John said the advanced microscope is new to the market and offers the capability to track the fate of each cell through high-resolution live cell imaging.

Livecyte allows for the identification of any cells exhibiting abnormalities or likely to cause complications such as tumour formation. By screening the cells that are prepared for the patient, and ensuring the cells are healthy, we can decrease the risk of adverse events for the patients. The livecyte microscope will play a pivotal role in ensuring the safety of the cells used in the transplantation process.”

The Foundation’s support of Griffith University’s Spinal Injury Project, has already led to many milestones including:

• transformational research initially conducted by Emeritus Professor Alan Mackay-Sim;

• development of the 3D nerve bridge for transplantation;

• successful outcomes of the intensive rehabilitation trials; and

• now being on the cusp of the first ever human clinical trial utilising these research outcomes.

The Foundation’s ultimate goal is to begin the human clinical trial and by donating the funds to purchase this equipment we are one step closer.

The event was also a chance to recognise the Postdoctoral Fellowship, sponsored by the Foundation, to Dr Mo Chen, a Fellow of the Clem Jones Centre for Neurobiology and Stem Cell Research for the past four years. Unfortunately due to illness Mo was regrettably unable to join the celebration and Prof James St John accepted the plaque on his behalf, pictured below with Griffith University Vice Chancellor, Professor Carolyn Evans.

The livecyte microscope was funded in full by the Foundation through the support of our donors at a cost of $400,000. For more information please contact us at [email protected]

Mo Plaque
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