Projects/Special Interest Groups

​Research Project / Group Autoimmunity and Allergy, Clinical Immunology, PathWest QEII​
Key Focus Area​ Ex vivo allergy testing  - Basophil Activation Assay
Project Leader​ Dr Chris Bundell
Location​ QEII, Clinical Immunology​
Project Group Members​ Dr Michaela Lucas, Dr Michael O’Sullivan
Dr  Andrew Mclean-Tooke, Ms Elizabeth Fisher
Ms Monica Kemp​
Affiliations​ Clinical Immunology QEII and Fiona Stanley and Harry Perkins Medical Research Institute​
Project Description​
In vivo testing to allergens is largely skin prick testing using crude or purified allergens. This testing requires a clinical setting with medically trained staff to be in attendance to monitor the patient and measure the response to allergens applied directly to the skin. At a minimum the level of discomfort experienced by the patient is the irritation due to a positive control response. There is often a poor correlation between in vitro specific IgE and skin prick testing. Alternative, low risk approaches to allergy testing with a high predicative value for the likelihood of reaction to allergens inhaled, airborne or drug related are desirable. 
 
Basophils and mast cells are key cells in the allergic responses. However there is increasing evidence in murine studies to show that the basophil mediates an early response in allergic reactions. Unlike the mast cell, the basophil while present in low numbers in peripheral blood (<1%) can be isolated and used to measure functional response in effector cells in ex vivo allergen exposure. Flow cytometry is used to measure upregulation of markers such as CD63 and CD203c on basophils tagged with a fluorochrome conjugated anti CCR3.
The basophil activation assay has to potential to measure:
1. patient basophils response to allergen stimulation
2. sIgE responses to allergens including drug components that cannot be presented in a solid phase assay.
The study will consider the utility of this method to assess the allergic response to allergens that are not available for specific IgE method used at QEII Clinical Immunology (Phadia) and for drug allergy testing in patients.​
Publications​
Contact for further information​ Name: Chris Bundell
Email: Chris.Bundell@health.wa.gov.au
Telephone:08 6383 4302​

  

Research Project / Group​ Autoimmunity, Clinical Immunology, PathWest QEII ​
Key Focus Area​ IBM Autoantibody​
Project Leader​ Dr Chris Bundell​
Location​ QEII, Clinical Immunology​
Project Group Members​​ A/Prof Merrilee Needham,  Dr Peter Hollingsworth, Dr Andrew Mclean-Tooke and Prof Frank Mastaglia​
Affiliations​ Clinical Immunology Pathwest QEII
Australian Neuromuscular Research Institute
Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Murdoch University ​
Project Description​​ Sporadic inclusion body myositis (IBM) is a progressive degenerative autoimmune disease of unknown cause which occurs in individuals aged over 40 and responds poorly to treatment.  It belongs to a group of idiopathic inflammatory myopathies that also includes dermatomyositis, polymyositis and immune mediated necrotizing myopathies (IMIM) that share a number of common properties namely; muscle weakness and inflammation. A new autoantibody blood test for IBM has been reported in the literature recently. We aim to set up this test here in Australia and validate the sensitivity and specificity of the ELISA assay in sera from patients with IBM and other inflammatory and non-inflammatory myopathies.
This project is supported by The Myositis Association – Australia Incorporated​
Publications​
Contact for further information​​ Name: Chris Bundell
Email: Chris.Bundell@health.wa.gov.au
Telephone:08 6383 4302​
 

 

Research Project / Group Autoimmunity, Clinical Immunology, PathWest QEII ​
Key Focus Area​ Antinuclear antibody Testing in the Clinical Immunology Diagnostic Laboratory.​
Project Leader​ Dr Chris Bundell​
Location​ QEII, Clinical Immunology​
Project Group Members​ Dr Andrew Mclean-Tooke,  Dr Peter Hollingsworth, Prof David Preen, Dr Ben McGettigan​
Affiliations​ Clinical Immunology Pathwest QEII
School of Population Health, University of Western Australia​
Project Description​​​
Autoantibodies are directed against various molecules or complexes in the cell nucleus and are generally associated with a number of autoimmune diseases such as Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, Sjogrens Syndrome and other mixed connective tissue diseases.  However, these autoantibodies are also detectable in the healthy population.  A number of target antigens for anti-nuclear antibodies (ANA) have been well characterised and are considered markers of specific autoimmune diseases (i.e. La, Ro, Sm, dsDNA and the RNP complex).  In addition, there are other ANAs routinely detected which do not have a characterised target antigen or disease association. 
 

The aims of this study are to:
• To examine patient morbidity (such as SLE, SS, myositis, scleroderma, rheumatic disease, liver disease, neuroimmunological disease and other autoimmune diseases) and related mortality with respect to age, gender, ANA level and ANA specificities

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Publications​
Contact for further information​​​ Name: Chris Bundell
Email: Chris.Bundell@health.wa.gov.au
Telephone:08 6383 4302​
 

 

 

 

 

Page last updated: 18 Jan 2016