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OUR PROMISE

Without you, the Perkins would cease to exist. We value you – your
opinion, your financial contribution and your friendship.

OUR IMPACT

It’s through the support of the WA community, that a bold vision to improve community health has resulted in life-changing outcomes for many Australian families. A seed planted in 1998 to grow a world-class research environment in Perth and evolved into a leading institute delivering outcomes that each day move us closer to new treatments and better healthcare for everyone.

Global leader

Our teams are working with researchers from all over the world to find new and better ways to improve health for our families and yours.

Collaborators in 97 cities, 29 countries, 6 continents.

Major Highlights

1998

The Western Australian Institute for Medical Research (WAIMR) is established as a collaboration between Royal Perth Hospital, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital and The University of Western Australia. Director Professor Peter Klinken leads 27 researchers in three teams investigating different facets of cancer.

1999

Wesfarmers becomes a major sponsor with a $5 million donation – at the time, the biggest corporate donation to medical research in Australia’s history. WAIMR becomes Australia’s first multi-campus research institute for the study of adult disease.

2000

The Institute expands to investigate heart disease, asthma, cancer and immunology, neuroscience, neurotrauma, metabolism and musculoskeletal conditions.

2001

Perkins researchers contribute to important research into a new way to engineer virus-like particles for drug delivery.

2002

Perkins researchers find that a gene called sonic hedgehog (Shh) was crucial for rapid, extensive expansion of the developing brain.

2003

Fremantle Hospital becomes a partner. Perkins researchers investigate a type of legume thought to have properties that reduce the incidence of breast cancer.

2004

Diabetes researchers at the Perkins lead the creation of the world's most powerful genetic resource. Enabling rapid identification of genes for complex traits and helping researchers around the world make important advances in melanoma, mesothelioma, diabetes, dementia, heart disease and much more.

2005

Neurogenetic researchers at the Perkins discover that a particular gene mutation causes Laing distal myopathy – a condition named after the team leader, Professor Nigel Laing AO. It is believed that Laing distal myopathy is the commonest distal myopathy in the world and the breakthrough led to diagnosis and answers for patients.

2006

Our teams discovered a new gene called SLIRP that effects breast and prostate cancer, diabetes and fertility.

2007

Professor Laing’s team finds that mutations in a skeletal muscle gene is the cause of many cases of a severe condition that paralyses babies in the womb. The discovery is helping parents have healthy babies.

2007

Scientists at the Perkins undertake a major study into whether a drug used for generations to treat gout could be used to prevent heart attacks.

2008

A major discovery into how to normalise highly chaotic cancer blood vessels is made by Perkins researchers. Tumour blood vessels can act as a barrier to stop immune cells and medicines reaching the cancer, and our researchers are creating treatments that supercharge our immune cells and break down the tumour barrier in one life-saving hit.

2009

Perkins researcher identify of over 40 genes that affect the risk of someone developing Type 1 Diabetes.

2010

Linear Clinical Research Ltd is established as WA’s only dedicated and Australia’s most advanced early phase clinical trials facility. Linear is a step towards helping Perkins researchers move their discoveries from the lab bench to the patients that need them most.

2011

Researchers at the Perkins discover a gene that is required by our bodies to produce the energy they need. The improved understanding of how these genes work gave new insights into how energy production can fail in metabolic disease, diabetes and cancer.

2012

The first major cycling event to support cancer research at the Perkins is held and 1219 riders raise $4.6 million.

2013

Our teams make a ground breaking discovery in new ways silence the genes that drive breast cancer growth.

2014

The Perkins moves into a state-of-the-art research facility at the QEII Medical Centre, the Institute is renamed in honour of inaugural Chairman, Harry Perkins, and Professor Peter Leedman takes up Directorship.

2015

A new treatment targeting chronic kidney disease is developed by Perkins researchers.

2016

Perkins researchers demonstrate that a recessive gene mutations causes some cases of sudden infant death. The discovery could help screen for affected babies.

2016

Perkins scientists develop new method to tackle aggressive breast cancer, more effective than current treatments, using nanoparticles to deliver anti-cancer drugs right to the tumour.

2017

A Perkins-led landmark study doubles the estimate of our functional genes and finds evidence of evolutionary selection and links with major diseases in a poorly understood class of genes.

2018

Perkins researchers uncover evidence linking obesity and metabolic dysfunction to a problem in the energy generators in cells.

2018

Perkins team finds new way to defend against Type 2 Diabetes

2019

New Perkins facility opens to help Perth melanoma patients.

2019

WA’s first pre-pregnancy screening program for genetic disease is launched by Perkins researchers

2019

World-class cell sequencing centre opens and is set to transform cancer research in WA