Organisations looking to invest in innovative health and medical technologies will find a network of research institutions and biotech companies with a track record of commercial success.
Australia's research institutions, biotech companies and collaborative networks offer a range of scientific disciplines and areas of infectious disease expertise. Investors can benefit from:
- research excellence and a collaborative culture
- capabilities in medicinal chemistry, immunology, clinical trials and public health
- accessible world-class research infrastructure
- biodiversity in the natural environment, providing potential for new drug discovery
- a strong patent system that protects novel intellectual property
- proximity to regions where tropical diseases are endemic, providing opportunities for field studies and clinical validation of discoveries made in Australia.
Australian researchers conduct clinical studies locally and throughout the Asia-pacific region, including in Papua New Guinea (PNG). Facilities include state-of-the-art pathogen and insect containment facilities such as the Mosquito Control Laboratory at the Queensland Institute of Medical Research (QIMR) Berghofer Medical Research Institute in Brisbane, where many aspects of vector biology and disease transmission are studied.
Australian Tropical Medicines Commercialisation Grants Programme
The Australian Tropical Medicine Commercialisation Grants programme helps Australian businesses and public sector research organisations to develop pathways to commercialise Australian tropical medical research in partnership with international organisations. Grant funding totalling $7.1 million will help build connections between Australian research institutes and the global health sector, including international pharmaceutical companies and philanthropic organisations.
The Australian Tropical Medicine Commercialisation programme guidelines were amended on 9 February 2016 to allow a wider range of entities to apply for funding. This includes removing the previous requirement for applicants to be incorporated and non tax-exempt.
Applications for the Programme closed on 4 March 2016. The assessment of all eligible application has been completed. Twelve applications have been successful, four are from Victoria, four are from Queensland, two are from NSW and two are from WA. Five of the successful applicants are private companies, two are independent research institutes and five are from Australian universities. Download the list of successful applicants (PDF).
Further information regarding the Programme can be found here.
The Australian Government is committed to supporting innovation and the commercialisation of Australian research. the Government is also keen to confront major tropical health security risks before they become established public health emergencies.
In 2014 alone, the Australian Government committed:
- A$42 million for tropical health and medicine research at James Cook University in Townsville, Queensland, through the Australian Research Council's Special Research Initiatives scheme. The funds support research in virology and disease control, and the development of new treatments and vaccines
- A$18 million to the Regional Malaria and Other Communicable Disease Threats Trust Fund, established by the Asian Development Bank. This fund supports efforts to contain the spread of drug-resistant strains of malaria
- A$10 million to the Global Alliance for Tuberculosis Drug Development (TB Alliance)
- A$10 million to Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV).
In 2015, the Australian Government announced a A$15.4 million initiative to support tropical disease research. This initiative includes the A$8.5 million Australian Tropical Medicine Commercialisation Grants Programme.