AAA-MEDICAL: integrating synergistic expertise for better treatment of abdominal aortic aneurysm

  • Golledge, Jonathan (Chief Investigator)
  • Shah, Sonia (Chief Investigator)
  • Oakhill, Jon (Chief Investigator)
  • Paige, Ellie (Chief Investigator)
  • Clay-Williams, Robyn (Primary Chief Investigator)
  • Mao, Guangzhao (Chief Investigator)
  • Tran, Truyen (Chief Investigator)
  • Loots, Gabriela (Chief Investigator)
  • Tsao, Phil (Chief Investigator)
  • Gasser, Thomas (Chief Investigator)
  • Jones, Rhondda E. (Associate Investigator)
  • Jones, Gregory T. (Associate Investigator)
  • Norman, Richard (Associate Investigator)
  • Arnott, Clare (Associate Investigator)
  • Singh, Tejas (Associate Investigator)
  • Bown, Matthew J. (Associate Investigator)
  • Field, Matthew A. (Associate Investigator)
  • Vasa, Rajesh (Associate Investigator)
  • Neale, Rachel E. (Associate Investigator)
  • Moxon, Joseph V. (Associate Investigator)

Project: Research

Project Details


Twenty million people worldwide (100K Australians) have an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA), causing 200,000 deaths/yr. The only AAA treatment is surgical repair but this has poor durability and safety concerns. Systematic reviews and consultations with patients and health professionals indicate that the lack of drug therapies to limit AAA rupture or requirement for AAA surgery, and the absence of effective ways to individualise management are key deficiencies.
Our multidisciplinary and diverse international team of experts in bioinformatics, biology, biomarkers, biomechanics, chemistry, computer science, drug development, epidemiology, genomics, imaging, implementation and surgery will employ unique resources (lab models, biobanks, drugs, international network, registries and established trials), along with our prior discovery of 4 hugely promising drug targets in an integrated laboratory and clinical research program to address these deficiencies.
Over the next 5 yrs, we will:
1: Test our promising drug leads using clinically relevant lab models
2: Use our human biobanks and registries to:
2.1. Perform genetic and transcriptomic analyses to test 4 promising causal pathways in AAA as drug targets and discover risk alleles to inform personalised management
2.2. Develop risk models and apps for personalised AAA management
3. Use our established trials and network to test if:
3.1. Metformin reduces AAA rupture risk and how it works and is best targeted
3.2. Vitamin D supplementation slows aortic expansion and prevents AAA events.
Our comprehensive program is expected to transform AAA care from a model that offers patients no alternative treatment other than surgical repair to one that selects patients for targeted treatment including new drug therapies based on personalised assessment. We anticipate bringing the first ever cheap and widely implementable AAA drugs into practice and delivering a sustainable drug pipeline which can be adapted to other treatment deficient diseases.
Short titleAAA-Medical
AcronymSyn 23 (James Cook led)
StatusNot started
Effective start/end date1/09/2431/12/28