The Federal Health Minister, Greg Hunt, announced today, $25M of funding to CTx partner, WEHI, to boost Australia’s capacity to perform compound screening, the first stage along the path of producing new drugs. Compound screening has been one of the bottlenecks in the complicated and lengthy process of turning excellent Australian research into new drugs for patients.

Since 2007, WEHI has been one of CTx’s partners and has provided much of the drug screening resource required to help CTx and its partners turn Australian cancer research into drugs. Novel cancer drugs from CTx have attracted the attention of the global pharmaceutical industry and resulted in deals (here and here) that have generated more than $40 million dollars in signature payments over the last three years. The deals have the potential to generate more than $1 billion in future revenue streams. More than 50% of that revenue has been shared with the CTx partners to further support research and development.

CTx is a major user of screening at WEHI and this new funding means that CTx and other Australian drug developers will be able to leverage WEHI’s increased screening capacity to accelerate the conversion of great research into great new medicines.