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March 18, 2021updated 12 Jul 2022 11:21am

Australia to support clinical trials for mental illness treatments

The Australian Government is launching a competitive grant round of $11.6m (A$15m) to kick-start clinical trials to develop treatments for mental illness.

The Australian Government is launching a competitive grant round of $11.6m (A$15m) to kick-start clinical trials to develop treatments for mental illness.

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The A$15m Innovative Therapies for Mental Illness Grant Opportunity under the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) will be used to explore the use of combination therapies to treat debilitating mental illnesses, such as anxiety disorders, depression, and substance abuse disorders.

These illnesses include post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), major depressive disorder, addiction disorders, and eating disorders.

Australia Health and Aged Care Minister Greg Hunt said: “The early results of trials in Australia and internationally are extremely encouraging, but more research is desperately needed before these approaches can be used by psychiatrists outside of controlled clinical trials.”

“This grant opportunity will boost local research into potentially life-saving therapies and offers hope all those suffering from mental illness, including our Veterans and emergency service personnel dealing with the devastating effects of PTSD.”

The Australian Government has committed $475m (A$614m) through the MRFF to support clinical trials.

Funding for the 2021 Innovative Therapies for Mental Illness Grant Opportunity will be provided for three years from 2021–22, with project activity up to five years.

Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister for Mental health and Suicide Prevention David Coleman said: “This bold initiative is about ensuring that we explore every avenue of potential treatment for Australians diagnosed with a mental illness.”

The government has opened applications for grants for Australian clinical trials to evaluate new therapeutics, including ketamine, psilocybin, and MDMA, supported by psychological/ psychiatric care, through GrantConnect.

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Direct-to-Patient Trials: How IRT Plays an Important Role in Bellerophon's Direct-to-Patient Trials

As the industry strengthens its focus on patient centricity, Direct-to-Patient clinical trials have emerged as a popular trial design that have the potential to increase patient recruitment and retention. IRT plays a crucial role in the success of a Direct-to-Patient trial. Because drug supplies are being managed and shipped from distribution facilities directly to patients’ homes, a sponsor must have a high-quality system in place to accurately track the chain of custody, ensure patient-blinding and handle other logistical challenges. What You Will Learn Benefits and challenges associated with the Direct-to-Patient model Bellerophon's top considerations when implementing this trial design How IRT can equip study teams to successfully track chain of custody, ensure patient blinding, and handle logistical challenges
by Suvoda
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