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Since its inception with a $3 billion bequest from Paul Ramsay, a key philosophy of Australia’s largest foundation, the Paul Ramsay Foundation, has been to seek out people across the country who are at the top of their game, addressing the most important issues of our times.

One of those issues is the rising tide of non-communicable diseases, such as allergies, asthma, autism, diabetes and obesity. To take one example, in Australia food allergy affects 10% of children up to 1 year of age and between 4-8% of children aged up to 5 years of age. Hospital admissions for severe allergic reactions have doubled over the last decade and figures for children aged 0 to 4 years are even higher. According to the Australian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy, there is no clear reason why food allergy, particularly in young children, has increased so rapidly.

A landmark $26 million study to uncover the origins of non-communicable diseases could change the way we understand, diagnose, treat and reduce the risk of these…

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