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World-leading research study GenV reaches significant milestone at the Royal Women’s Hospital

15 February 2022

News at a Glance:

  • World-leading medical research study GenV reached the significant milestone of statewide recruitment in October 2021. Over 10,000 families have already opted to take part in GenV.
  • GenV, or Generation Victoria, is a sophisticated research project with a simple goal: a better approach to child and adult health and wellbeing in Victoria. It is led from the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (Murdoch Children’s) and is partnering with birthing hospitals across the state.
  • The largest project of its kind in Australia, GenV will not only provide a more complete picture of the health and wellbeing of two generations but also enable GenV researchers to test new approaches that could help solve complex problems faced by children, adults and families today.

Pictured: New GenV members Christine Wong and her baby outside of the Royal Women’s Hospital, Melbourne.

Murdoch Children’s Research Institute’s world-leading medical research study GenV has reached the significant milestone of statewide recruitment in October 2021. Over 10,000 families have already opted to take part in GenV–comprising over 25,000 babies, mothers and fathers altogether.

GenV is one of the world’s largest-ever birth and parent cohort studies. The opt-in project follows babies and their parents to help solve common child and adult health problems. It combines new and routinely collected data and biosamples and provides an opportunity for parents to join additional trials and sub-studies of interest over time.

Around 100 new jobs have been created in clinical settings across the state over the life of the GenV project. GenV is currently is available at 23 Metropolitan and 33 Regional birthing hospitals across Victoria. Every family with a newborn baby is invited to join over a two-year period from October 2021, no matter where they live or what language they speak.

GenV is available in every community across the state, including the Royal Women’s Hospital Parkville. To date, there are over 100 twins or multiple birth families, representing over 200 babies, taking part in the project.

GenV’s recruitment team has recorded 60 languages (including Auslan) during the opt-in process. Nearly 2,500 families do not primarily speak English at home.

By involving as many children and families as possible in this once-in-a-generation research study, GenV can help to solve pressing problems like asthma, food allergies, obesity, and mental illness.

GenV aims to speed up finding answers to the significant issues facing children and adults and provide the opportunity to better predict, treat and prevent common and complex health problems.

Launching the program at the Women’s January 2022, was critical to the success of GenV locally. Positioned in a key geographic region for Metropolitan Melbourne, the Women’s delivers 10% of all the babies born in Victoria.

GenV is led by the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, is supported by The Royal Children’s Hospital and The University of Melbourne and is funded by the Paul Ramsay Foundation (PRF), the Victorian Government and The Royal Children’s Hospital Foundation.

Visit the GenV website for more information.

Quote attributable to GenV Director, Scientific and Cohort, Melissa Wake

“What makes GenV so important in my mind is that it is a truly collaborative study and a partnership of many that has endured during a global pandemic. It is only the work of so many throughout Victoria, despite the challenges of Covid-19, that has enabled this important 10,000 families milestone.”

Quote attributable to GenV participant, Christine Wong, Mother of Lorenzo

“As parents, we want to provide the best care for our kids now and for their future. While we are blessed that our children are healthy overall, we wanted to be part of the program knowing we are part of a bigger healthcare picture that can benefit all Victorian children and families.”

Quote attributable to GenV Area Manager for the Royal Women’s Hospital and Frances Perry House, Carolyn Mason

“We couldn’t have involved so many local families in this world-leading research project without the support of the team at the Royal Women’s Hospital, who deliver 10% of all the states’ babies.”

Quote attributable to Chief Executive, the Royal Women’s Hospital, Professor Sue Matthews

“As a tertiary hospital, the Women’s leads and collaborates on hundreds of research projects and understands the positive real-world impact these projects can have. We are thrilled to support GenV which is exciting in its scale and ambition to better predict, prevent and treat a variety of conditions affecting Australian children, including preterm birth.”


About Murdoch Children’sThe Murdoch Children’s Research Institute(Murdoch Children’s) is the largest child health research institute in Australia committed to making discoveries and developing treatments to improve child and adolescent health in Australia and around the world. Murdoch Children’s pioneers new treatments, trials better vaccines and improves ways of diagnosing and helping sick babies, children, and adolescents. Murdoch Children’s is one of the only research institutes in Australia to offer genetic testing to find answers for families of children with previously undiagnosed conditions.