The Prime Minister commits $1M to the MothersBabies Study.

MothersBabies seeks to raise $5M specifically for the MothersBabies Study that will commence in early 2019 at the Microbiome Research Centre (MRC) in St George Hospital, Kogarah, Sydney.

Previously the MRC had $12M committed from the Federal and State Governments, St George and Sutherland Medical Research Foundation (SSMRF), South Eastern Sydney Local Health District, and the UNSW - for the staffing and for the highly specialised, world class labs needed for the MRC’s cutting edge research.


On 19 October the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison visited the MRC and announced a further $4M worth of funding including $1M for the Mothers Babies study. The other funds are: $2M for a dedicated bioinformatics team, and $1M for the healthy Australian Microbiome Study. This funding was secured by St George and Sutherland Medical Research Foundation (SSMRF). This brings committed funds to the MRC up to $16M.

MothersBabies.org is raising a further $4M needed for the MothersBabies 5 year Study.


The MothersBabies study is being conducted at the Microbiome Research Centre microbiome.org.au


The Microbiome Research Centre, the MRC, is nestled within the grounds of a major health care campus in southern Sydney, the St George and Sutherland Hospitals, and is part of the UNSW clinical research campus. It was founded in 2017 by Prof Emad El-Omar, Professor of Medicine at UNSW Sydney and a specialist gastroenterologist.

Professor Emad El-Omar  Director of the MRC

Professor Emad El-Omar

Director of the MRC

Prof. Emad El-Omar has been studying the microbiome for 20 years and for the last 9 years has been the Editor of specialist gastroenterology journal, GUT. Development of the MRC was boosted tremendously by a $4M grant from the Australian Federal Government and, in 2018, an additional $1.5M was contributed by the NSW Government and $1M by the South Eastern Sydney Local Health District as well as $5.5M from UNSW. These grants support the setting up of the MRC, it’s staffing and the infrastructure needed for highly specialised, world class labs in which to conduct it’s cutting edge research. Until Friday 19 October, $12M had been committed.  The labs will open in early 2019.

The MRC is imbued with a collaborative multidiscipline ethos connecting national and international researchers, clinicians, bioinformaticians, innovators and entrepreneurs. It is a comprehensive world-class microbiome-focused research centre committed to tackling diseases that affect the Australian population. Our researchers integrate basic science, translational medicine and harness powerful multi-omic approaches such as genomics, epigenomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics and microbiomics as well as bioinformatics to answer pertinent questions on the microbiome. Core research is being pursued in the following five themes:

1. Cancer

2. Women and Children’s Health

3. Infection, Immunity and Inflammation

4. Critical Care

5. Mental Health and Neuroscience