We are proud to support two University of Queensland research projects with a $500,000 donation from The Lott by Golden Casket unclaimed prize money. 

The first project focuses on a funnel web spider venom peptide that will improve recovery from strokes and heart attacks. The second concentrates on new technology paving the way for the next generation of vaccines.

While the two research projects are very different, both aim to improve health outcomes for Australians.

The peptide (Hi1a) from the venom of the Fraser Island (K’gari) funnel web spider has been found to protect the brain from damage caused by a stroke, improve cardiac recovery after heart attacks, and enhance the performance of donor hearts used for transplantation. 

Yep… you read that right! Our native funnel web spider’s venom could make a huge difference to those suffering a stroke or heart attack.  

Project leader Professor Glenn King said the donation would rapidly advance large-scale manufacture of Hi1a to fast-track the drug candidate to clinical trials, with the ultimate goal of providing first responders with a crucial drug against strokes and heart attacks.

We see Professor Glenn King and his team as our very own Spider-Man!

UQ’s rapid-response “molecular clamp” technology has been recognised globally as holding promise for future vaccine development. 

This technology helps the body recognise the virus fragment as enough of a threat to create an effective immune response.

"Using this funding, we aim to progress this innovative technology further to be able to tackle a wide range of virus threats – from influenza and Ebola through to Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome,” project co-leader Professor Paul Young said. 

UQ Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Advancement) Jennifer Karlson said the university was grateful for the generosity of The Lott by Golden Casket in choosing to step forward and support two world-leading Queensland research projects.

“We are delighted to continue to partner with The Lott by Golden Casket to help advance research that aims to tackle some of the biggest health issues our societies face today,” she said.

The Lott General Manager Andrew Shepherd said Australia’s Official Lotteries had a history of supporting important health infrastructure and services.

“Lotteries in Queensland has a strong history of supporting the health sector. We’re proud to have  helped build hospitals and deliver vital medical equipment,” he said.

“We’re thrilled to be able to continue this support by providing funding  two University of Queensland research projects that aim to tackle some of the biggest health issues of our time.

“We often hear from our winners the dreams they want to make a reality. But today, these University of Queensland researchers are dreaming of making a future with better health outcomes for everyone.”

To learn more about these important initiatives head to their website.

We can’t wait to keep you updated on the progress of both these amazing research projects.