The Allergy and Immunology Foundation of Australasia (AIFA) funds important new research in allergy, immunodeficiency and other immune diseases with the help of our loyal supporters. These include Professor Ann Kupa, CSL Behring, DBV Technologies, ASCIA members and public donors.
Grants are awarded as part of a nationally competitive research grant program. The selection process is rigorous. AIFA Expressions of Interest and then grant applications are reviewed and scored by a voluntary grant selection panel. This comprises experts with extensive clinical and research experience in allergy and clinical immunology. Panel members declare conflicts of interest.
Grants are awarded on merit, with preference for early stage projects and early career researchers. Criteria for rating grant applications are: originality and scientific quality, significance of outcomes, research methodology, team quality and capability.
The Chair of the Allergy and Immunology Foundation of Australasia, Dr Melanie Wong, announced the AIFA grants for 2022 at the AIFA Research Symposium of the ASCIA Conference in Melbourne on Thursday 1st September.
The AIFA Ann Kupa Food Allergy Research Grant of $40,000 was awarded to the project “Immune mechanisms governing the natural resolution of peanut allergy”. Co-investigators A/Prof Rachel Peters and Dr Melanie Neeland are based at the Murdoch Children's Research Institute (MCRI) in Melbourne.
The AIFA Food Allergy Research Grant of $15,000 (supported by DBV Technologies) was awarded to Dr Brynn Wainstein for the project “A novel approach to diagnose cashew and pistachio allergy using peptide microarray technology”. Dr Wainstein will lead a team from the Sydney Children’s Hospital and the University of New South Wales.
The AIFA Primary Immunodeficiencies Clinical Research Grant of $30,000 (supported by CSL Behring) was awarded to Dr Emily Edwards for the project “Antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 in immunoglobulin products and their capacity to augment immunity in immunodeficient patients.” Dr Edwards works at Monash University and the team includes researchers from Alfred Health and the Burnet Institute, with collaboration from the patient organisation AusPIPs and the Australian Red Cross.
AIFA awarded an Early Career Researcher grant of $30,000 to Dr Alisa Kane for the project “ImPaCT-PID study (Improving Patient Centred Transitional Care in Primary Immunodeficiency)”. Dr Kane works at St Vincent’s Hospital and will collaborate with the patient organisation Immune Deficiencies Foundation of Australia (IDFA) and colleagues at the University of NSW, the Sydney Children’s Hospital, and the Children’s Hospital at Westmead.
Congratulations to all the successful Chief Investigators and their teams. We look forward to reporting the results of this important research at future ASCIA conferences.
Every dollar donated to AIFA goes directly to the research projects as the costs of the AIFA website, grant management and communication are supported by the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA). No indirect costs are charged to the grant awardee's institution.
The Chief Investigator of the project applying for an AIFA grant must be an ASCIA member to be eligible. ASCIA membership application
Thank you also to our expert grant selection panel of immunologists who volunteer their time.
The grant round for 2023 will open in March.
Content updated Nov 2022