CPA’s Dr Madison Paton wins prestigious research grant

CPA’s Dr Madison Paton wins prestigious research grant
Posted on Wed 6 Jul 2022

Dr Madison Paton, an expert in stem cells at the Cerebral Palsy Alliance Research Institute, has been announced as the winner of the White Coats Foundation’s 2022 ‘Power of One’ Grant.

The ‘Power of One’ grant is awarded annually to assist early research and discoveries by the White Coats Foundation, which is dedicated to raising awareness of the role that clinical trials play in advancing medical science and healthcare.

As a Research Fellow at the Cerebral Palsy Alliance Research Institute, Dr Paton is an emerging leader in the field of regenerative medicine for newborn brain injury, which is the most common form of death and disability in babies.  

Stem cells offer a promising potential treatment for children with cerebral palsy, but no treatments are currently approved in Australia and more research may be required. A key goal of Dr Paton’s work is to fast-track clinical trials of stem cell treatments to ensure they are a safe and effective treatment.

Read more about the research pipeline for moving stem cell treatment from the lab into standard medical care.

Another major consideration of Dr Paton’s research is engaging families and parents of children with cerebral palsy – the White Coats grant supports the involvement of a Parent Investigator to work within a large team of experts to help establish acceptable and meaningful clinical research.

In CPA Research Institute’s regenerative medicine department, Dr Paton works closely with Senior Stem Cell Research Fellow Dr Megan Finch-Edmondson. Together, they represent a new generation of young scientists working with people with cerebral palsy and their families to conduct research that seeks to address outcomes that are important to them and are also meaningful for the wider community.

Madison's work in clinical trials is a way to help bring new treatments to Australia and offer an opportunity for families to actively participate in important research.

Learn more about how CPA researchers collaborate with the cerebral palsy community to ensure that the lived experience of people with disability is at the heart of our research.

Dr Paton’s ambition within the research team is to establish Australia’s first mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) therapy clinical trial for newborn stroke, with a key focus on education, awareness and coordination amongst neonatal intensive care units in NSW and Victoria.

“Stem cells offer a potentially transformative way forward for the treatment of early brain injury and cerebral palsy. Madison's work in clinical trials is a way to help bring new treatments to Australia and offer an opportunity for families to actively participate in important research. Thank you to the White Coats Foundation for supporting this vital work,” said Professor Nadia Badawi, CP Alliance Chair of Cerebral Palsy Research, The University of Sydney.

Did you know? MSCs can come from many sources, like bone marrow, fat and blood. Lab research has shown that MSCs given as a treatment may help to make a more reparative environment following injury. Around the world, lots of human research is now underway investigating MSCs as a treatment for a range of brain conditions. Read more here.

Click here to find out more about Madison’s research and the White Coats Foundation. 

Saturday, 3rd December marks one of the biggest days in the disability community’s calendar, International Day of People with Disability. This year's theme celebrates how innovation has supported more inclusive lives - something we at CPA champion every day!

Thank you for your continued support this year. Here are some highlights of what we have achieved together, and information on our holiday season closure and reopen dates for 2022/23.