McCusker Charitable Foundation delivers landmark funding to the Raine Study

Funding from the McCusker Charitable Foundation will optimise researcher access to the Raine Study’s 34 years of health and wellbeing data from 4 generations of participants

World-first Western Australian study has tracked almost 3,000 young adults and their parents and families since they were 18 weeks in-utero

24 October 2023:  The Raine Study is delighted to announce that it has been awarded a landmark funding boost from the McCusker Charitable Foundation.

$690,000 will be delivered to the Raine Study over the next three years, with the goal of supporting the work done by the Raine Study’s Scientific Director to protect and optimise access to the study’s unparalleled longitudinal data and biosamples holdings to enable ground-breaking research

The Raine Study is one of the largest, most successful ongoing pregnancy cohort studies in the world and was the very first of its kind when it was established in 1989.

It is now a multi-generational study, with participation spanning the Raine Study index participants (Generation 2), their children (Generation 3), their parents (Generation 1) and their grandparents (Generation 0).

For the past 34 years, researchers have used the data collected through the Raine Study to enable significant health and medical discoveries, setting international standards, and having a lasting impact on health outcomes around the world.

The generosity of the McCusker Charitable Foundation means that the Raine Study can continue to do this. The Raine Study’s latest research findings will be showcased at its annual Symposium event on Thursday 26 October at the UniClub.

Better access to data equals more research discoveries

The Raine Study’s Scientific Director, Associate Professor Rebecca Glauert from The University of Western Australia, is an epidemiologist and an expert in the field of data linkage and data on children and young people.

She says that the Raine Study is already a leader in terms of the approach it has taken to storing and safeguarding the immense volume of health data it has collected from each of its participants over the last three decades. Now, its focus is on ensuring that the hundreds of thousands of data points and millions of pieces of genetic information which have been collected from the Raine Study’s participants are used to improve lives.

“We need to unlock the potential of that data to make real change. By ensuring that the information we have is not only securely stored but carefully curated, utilised, and linked to other relevant sources of data, we can exponentially increase its value as a tool to change health outcomes around the world. “

Long-term commitment the result of a long-standing relationship

In addition to its appreciation of the financial support received from the McCusker Charitable Foundation, the Raine Study greatly values its long-standing ties with the Foundation’s Chairman and Director the Honourable Malcolm McCusker AC CVO KC, and Director and Administrator Mrs Tonya McCusker.

During Mr McCusker’s time as Governor of Western Australia (2011-2014), Mr and Mrs McCusker served as joint Patrons of the Raine Study and hosted the official celebration of 21 years of the Raine Study Research and the 21st Birthday of the Raine Study Participants in the Government House Gardens.

Mrs McCusker said: “It was a privilege to be associated with the Raine Study during our time in Government House, and even more rewarding to track the progress made since the Raine Study turned 21. Now in its fourth decade, we continue to be impressed by the Raine Study’s commitment to improving lives through its stewardship of the data repository entrusted to it by its participants. We feel confident that our support of the Raine Study will continue to pay dividends in the form of helping respond to the health and wellbeing questions of another generation of researchers.”

About the Raine Study

Based in Perth, Western Australia, the Raine Study was the world’s first pregnancy cohort study. It remains one of the largest and longest-running studies of human health from pregnancy through childhood, adolescence, and adulthood to be carried out anywhere in the world.

The Raine Study is a joint venture between The University of Western Australia, Curtin University, Telethon Kids Institute, Women and Infants Research Foundation, Edith Cowan University, Murdoch University and The University of Notre Dame Australia.

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