Jeff and his baby

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Revolutionary research indicates the venom of the deadly funnel web spider could prevent fatal damage caused by a heart attack

Emma and her family know the heartbreak of losing a loved one all too well, she lost her husband Jeff without warning to a heart attack. He had no symptoms to indicate he was at risk.

Tragically, heart attacks claim the lives of approximately 21 Australians every day.

With the hope of saving thousands of lives, scientists at the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute, in collaboration with the University of Queensland, are working on a surprising new treatment to prevent the damage caused by heart attacks.

The source of this new treatment? A molecule found in the venom of one of the world’s deadliest spiders, the funnel web.

Almost a decade of research has led the team to develop a drug candidate, a protein called Hi1a, which has been tested on beating human heart cells in the laboratory. Ground-breaking results have shown boosted survival rates in heart cells following a simulated heart attack.

The next stage is to progress to human clinical trials.

This exciting world first has the potential to save countless lives, and your support can help progress this vital research.

Will you make a generous gift today to help stop heart attacks killing people you love?

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Acknowledgement of Country

The Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute acknowledges the traditional custodians of the land, the Gadigal of the Eora nation, on which we meet, work, and discover.
Our Western Australian laboratories pay their respect to the Whadjuk Noongar who remain as the ongoing spiritual and cultural custodians of their land.