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New Company Starts, Bridging the Development Gap in the Discovery of Cancer Drugs
Date:8/27/2007

MELBOURNE, Australia, Aug. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Cancer Therapeutics CRC Pty Ltd (CTx) has commenced operations as one of the largest public/private partnerships of its type in the world.

Underpinned by AUD$148 million in funding over seven years, including AUD$37.6 million from the Australian Commonwealth Government, CTx addresses the gap between Australia's excellent academic cancer research base and its ability to discovery and develop new drugs to treat cancer.

The company is now seeking projects -- "big ideas about small molecules" -- from research organisations in Australia. One of the first projects is to discover and develop compounds directed at BNO69, the CTx participant Adelaide-based Bionomics Limited's own proprietary cancer target.

The CTx will create a dedicated drug discovery capability and drive the discovery, development and commercialisation of new compounds against in-licenced novel molecular targets from research organisations and small biotechnology companies across Australia, and in some cases overseas. Ultimately this will lead to the development of more effective cancer drugs. The innovative approach of CTx, funded under the Commonwealth Government's Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) scheme, will transform the discovery and early development of new therapies that might otherwise languish from a lack of supporting funds, resources and expertise.

Dr Julian Clark, Melbourne-based CEO of CTx, says: "While organisations such as Australia's National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and the Australian Research Council (ARC) provide excellent support for researchers and organisations pursuing basic scientific investigation, continuing financial support for further development of potential commercial targets has proven problematic. This is largely due to the inherent increased risks and the accelerating costs in any attempts to translate promising compounds into prospective drugs and the lack of funds for early
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SOURCE Cancer Therapeutics CRC Pty Limited
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