RESEARCH

Luis and Anthony

Medlab Clinical - Research Focus

Focused research on biologics that target disease pathophysiological processes. Specifically, Medlab is investigating the role of bacteria in health and disease through perturbations of the gastrointestinal microbiome; and the ability of probiotic bacteria to modulate and beneficially impact end-organ physiology.

Medlab's current research portfolio covers:


  1. Obesity
  2. Chronic Kidney Disease
  3. Depression
  4. Musculoskeletal muscle loss associated with ageing
  5. Non-opioid pain management

Laboratory basic research studies are conducted in a PC2 approved laboratory facility by a qualified team of research scientists. The research focus is in "first class" biologics as medicines that present novel challenges and ideas to mainstream medicine.



As at 9th March 2017



Medlab's Clinical Research Projects:


  1. OBESITY OBEP.100

    PROVISIONAL PATENT LODGED. Medlab's research focus is to develop new novel drugs for weight loss and improve symptomology of metabolic syndrome/pre-diabetes. Current medical treatments offer limited efficacy except that of radical surgery with lifestyle changes the preferred but not essentially the mosttherapeutic. Medlab research staff adjunct to The University of Sydney, Medical School Medical Sciences in the discipline of Pharmacology are collaborating >with the Boden Institute of Obesity, Nutrition, Exercise and Eating Disorders, The University of Sydney Medical School (Prof Ian Caterson) in assessing the efficacy of an evidence-based selection of bacterial strains in improving markers of glucose management and cardiovascular risk factors in a pre-diabetic cohort over 12-weeks duration. Outcome measures from this study will help to establish the research platform from which multiple studies and research projects will evolve.

  2. CHRONIC KIDNEY DISEASE (CKD) CKDP.100

    PROVISONAL PATENT LODGED. Current medical treatment for CKD is limited in both availability and efficacy with treatment targeted towards the comorbid conditions typically responsible for CKD. Medlab's research focus is to develop noveldrugs/biologics to treat the causes and pathophysiology of CKD and its associated symptoms. Medlab's research staff in collaboration with the Kidney Disease Research Centre at The University of Queensland, School of Medicine, at the Translational Research Institute / Princess Alexandra Hospital Brisbane (A/Professor Glenda Gobe), will be assessing the efficacy of select bacterial species and their metabolites in treating stages I-III of CKD. Currently, in vitro studies are being undertaken to provide essential data to progress the efficacy evaluation to a human cohort. Multiple compounds/biologics are expected to develop from this research focus.

  3. DEPRESSION DEPP.100

    PROVISIONAL PATENT LODGED. Traditional medical treatments for depressive symptoms include anti-depressant medications (i.e. SSRIs) however such therapy is reserved for moderate to severe depression with no evidence to support the use of antidepressants in mild depression. Depression is a large cause of disability in Australia with minor depression reported to be 2-3 times more common than major depression. Furthermore, clinical research is predominantly targeted towards major depression, excluding a large proportion of the population in need of effective treatment options. Medlab's research focus is the development of novel drugs for the treatment of mild depressive symptoms.

    a. DEPP.101 - Medlab research staff collaborated with the University of Queensland, School of Medicine at the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital (Dr Matthew Bambling), in recruiting participants with treatment-resistant depression for a single-group, 8-week study assessing the efficacy of SAMe treatment therapy for symptoms of depression. Treatment-resistant participants were chosen to determine if an anti-depressant mechanism did indeed exist. The outcome measures demonstrated a statistically significant improvement in depressive symptoms scores.

    b. DEPP.102 - Medlab research staff collaborated with the University of Queensland, School of Medicine at the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital (Dr Matthew Bambling), in recruiting participants with treatment-resistant depression for a single-group, 8-week study assessing the efficacy of a patented novel treatment therapy for symptoms of depression. Treatment-resistant participants were chosen to determine if an anti-depressant mechanism did indeed exist. The outcome measures demonstrated a statistically significant improvement in depressive symptom scores more so than SAMe (see Figure 1) providing scientific plausibility for a larger phase IIa double-blinded, placebo controlled study in patients with mild depression that is currently in design stage.

    c. DEPP.103 - Medlab research staff in collaboration with The University of Queensland, School of Medicine at the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital (Dr Mathew Bambling), will recruit participants with treatment-resistant depression for a single-group, 12-week study to assess the efficacy of an evidence-based selection of bacterial strains in treating symptoms of depression in combination with standard treatment. This will provide a platform to develop phase I and IIa/b studies in patients with anxiety / mild to moderate depression.

    d. DEPP.104 Medlab research staff in collaboration with The University of Queensland, School of Medicine at the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital (Dr Mathew Bambling), will recruit participants with treatment-resistant depression for a randomized, double-blinded placebo-controlled study for 12-weeks duration to assess the efficacy of the compounds studied in project II combined with the probiotics studied in project III.

  4. MUSCULOSKELETAL MUSCLE LOSS ASSOCIATED WITH AGEING AAP.100

    PROVISIONAL PATENT LODGED. Anti-ageing medicines/treatments are highly sought after by people requiring therapies to treat diseases (i.e. Alzheimer's Disease) and conditions (i.e. skeletal muscle loss, deficits in cellular energy production) associated with the ageing process. Medlab's research focus in this area is to develop novel drug therapies to rescue degenerative muscle fibers allowing better utilization of energy production with the reduction of biological ageing. Research protocol in development to investigate in an in vitro human cell system that initially would achieve the following:

    Determine if the following drugs specifically affect the level of Alternative Lengthening of Telomeres (ALT) activity in various cancer cell lines:
     - Ascorbate;
     - Dehydroascorbate;
     - Orotate;
     - Ubiquinone;
     - Ethidium Bromide;
     - Vitamin E;
     - Carnitine;
     - Microbial metabolites from probiotic bacterial supernatants.

  5. NON-OPIOID PAIN MANAGEMENT CANP.100

    PROVISONAL PATENT LODGED. Current treatment options for chronic pain relief include anti-inflammatory, analgesic and anti-depressant medications that are often associated with numerous unwanted side effects limiting their dose and longevity of use. The cannabis plant contains over 70 unique cannabinoid compounds that are responsible for its therapeutic and psychotomimetic/addictive effects. The main psychoactive component is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) that is predominantly responsible for the health and psychological effects associated with cannabis use. In recent years, considerable research has been initiated in isolating and analyzing THC for the treatment of people suffering from cancer, HIV/AIDs, chronic pain and also for epilepsy. Furthermore, Medlab hypothesizes that combining pharmaco-active cannabinoid analytes with biological therapies will amplify the therapeutic effects.

    The research focus for Medlab in this area is to develop new drug therapies initially for pain management with developmental research projects including:
     - isolation of active cannabinoids
     - demonstrate that a cannabinoid/biologic combination will amplify therapeutic efficacy
     - improve pharmacokinetic delivery
     - in vitro and stability analysis
     - pilot clinical trial

MEDLAB'S SECONDARY RESEARCH PROJECTS

NANOTECHNOLOGY DELIVERY SYSTEMS

The aim of the following clinical trials is to investigate and demonstrate that a novel, patent-protected delivery system is superior to standard delivery systems for nutraceutical therapies currently on the market e.g. capsules, liquids and powders. Bioavailability of nutraceutical compounds can be reduced and/or tightly regulated when administered orally due to gastrointestinal physiology, dysfunction and inflammation and also from gastrointestinal bacterial metabolism of the compounds. There is a need to improve the delivery mechanism of nutraceutical compounds to achieve optimal bioavailability and therapeutic efficacy. Medlab research staff, in collaboration with InMed researchers have developed a novel delivery system to apply to popular nutraceutical compounds. Initial research projects include the following:

  1. Vitamin D3 - Subjects were recruited to participate in a 6-week study that involved administering 6 different over-the-counter Vitamin D3 preparations, including a D3 preparation produced by InMed Technologies (partly owned by Medlab group of companies), each administered one at a time per week. Blood was drawn at baseline and then 1, 3 and 6 hours after oral administration of D3 to assess bioavailability.
  2. Coenzyme Q10 - Current participant recruitment is for a 6-week study that involves the administration of 6 different CoQ10 over-the-counter preparations, including a CoQ10 preparation produced by InMed Technologies to compare bioavailability profiles. Blood will be drawn at baseline, 1, 3 and 6 hours after CoQ10 supplementation.
  3. Vitamin B12 - Current participant recruitment is for a 6-week study that involves the administration of 6 different Vitamin B12 over-the-counter preparations, including a B12 preparation produced by InMed Technologies to compare bioavailability profiles. Blood will be drawn at baseline, 1, 3 and 6 hours after B12 supplementation.
  4. Ascorbic acid - Plasma levels of ascorbic acid are tightly regulated and do not increase with higher oral doses of the vitamin with the mean bioavailability of oral ascorbic acid decreasing with increasing doses. Medlab is developing a novel delivery system for ascorbic acid to overcome the oral threshold to progress clinical research in the assessment of elevated plasma ascorbic acid levels as an adjunct cancer therapy.


LAST UPDATED: 21/3/2016