Nucleus Network in Herston Conducting New At-Home Vaccine Trials

Nucleus Network, a clinical research center in Herston, is conducting early trials of a new at-home vaccine against COVID-19. The initiative is a partnership with Symvivo, a biotechnology company in Canada, which developed the needleless vaccine that may be stored at room temperature.

Around 24 Brisbane locals, between the ages of 18 and 55, are part of the first trial in Queensland. Nucleus Network will move on to a bigger trial if the results are promising.

The at-home vaccine is still awaiting approval from the Therapeutic Goods Administration. However, it is expected to be a game-changer as the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, the first available vaccine, has a strict storage requirement for a freezer with a temperature of -70C. 

If the Symvivo at-home vaccine receives approval, it will allow for more people to receive protection against the virus directly from the comforts of their homes. The Symvivo could be self-administered as it is an oral vaccine. It is infused with probiotic bacteria, which has been genetically modified with synthetic DNA to induce an immune response against the virus, SARS-CoV-2 to prevent COVID-19. 

“Our unique technology harnesses a genetically modified bacterial vector encoding a plasmid to safely and selectively deliver oral DNA vaccines and therapies directly to targeted tissues,” Symvivo said on its official site

Photo Credit: Symvivo

Nucleus Network’s Herston director, Professor Paul Griffin, said that Symvivo’s pre-clinical trials and tests in laboratories showed that it’s safe and effective against the virus. The company is hopeful that the human trials will deliver promising outcomes as well, but Mr Griffin held off commenting on the progress of the clinical trials before data proves its efficacy. 

Victoria Park to Close in 2021 for 45-Hectare Public Park Transformation

Victoria Park Golf Complex, located in Herston Road, will undergo a massive transformation in 2021 to become a public park spanning 45 hectares.

Once completed, this site, to be named the Victoria Park Vision, will be the second biggest public park in Brisbane next to the Botanic Gardens in Mt Coot-tha.

Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner announced the Council’s plans for the golf course to the press. Mr Schrinner visualised that the park would be comparable to Central Park in New York City or Hyde Park in London, as a green sanctuary with a number of free attractions and other recreational amenities like pop-up cinemas and markets.

“About 26 hectares of this council land is currently used as a pay and play public golf course, which over recent years has seen a decline in patronage and a reduction in revenue,” Mr Schrinner said on Facebook.

“From 2021, works will start to transform the golf course into public parkland.”

Victoria Park Vision will be twice the size of the current golf course and will likely boost community connectivity across Bowen Hills, Herston, Kelvin Grove and the Brisbane showgrounds. Access and parking around this area will also be improved.

Meanwhile, Mr Schinner also said that the Council will work with current tenants that use Victoria Park Golf Complex as a wedding venue, events place, putt-putt course, and driving range. These features will also be incorporated in the planned public park.

Photo Credit: Victoria Park Golf Complex/Facebook
Photo Credit: Victoria Park Golf Complex/Facebook

Council has set aside $1 million for this project and public consultations for inputs into the design will soon be underway until 2020.