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Cancer Council NSW awards over $9 million of funding to innovative cancer research

12th March 2020 - Cancer research

Cancer Council NSW has awarded over $9 million of new funding to 14 ground-breaking cancer research projects. The projects span a range of cancers, including four low survival cancers: ovarian, stomach, liver and pancreatic.

 “This is my favourite time of year! It’s always an honour to announce the amazing projects we’re funding to reduce the impact of cancer in Australia. From advanced breast cancer immunotherapy, to less toxic treatments for childhood cancers, the 14 projects address a range of topical issues facing Australian cancer patients today,” said Dr Jane Hobson, Research Grants Manager at Cancer Council NSW.

Funds have been awarded to projects deemed through peer review to be of the highest scientific merit; and through consumer review to be of the most value to the community.

14 grants have been awarded to researchers at the following institutions: Telethon Kids Institute, The University of Newcastle, Garvan Institute of Medical Research, University of Sydney, Centenary Institute, UNSW Sydney, The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research and The Westmead Institute For Medical Research.

One of two Translational Program Grants will be awarded on the night, together the grants offer $7.5 million in joint funding from NSW Government and Cancer Council NSW. This year, the grant goes to a team led by Professor Anna deFazio exploring how to better personalise ovarian cancer treatment for Australian women.

The other 13 projects focus on improving diagnoses and treatment of a range of cancer types. They include: new treatments for chronic pain in advanced bone cancer, using combination therapies to treat liver cancer, developing a new treatment approach for bowel cancer, and many more.

“The broad range of projects that we fund – across many types of cancers and stages of the cancer journey – shows Cancer Council NSW’s commitment to work across every area of every cancer,” Dr Hobson said.

“Projects like these wouldn’t be possible without our supporters – as an organisation that is over 90% community funded, these grants have been made possible by the community’s generosity,” Dr Hobson concluded.

Cancer Council NSW 2020 Translational Program Grant recipient:

  • Professor Anna deFazio, The Westmead Institute for Medical Research – Moving towards personalising treatment for women with ovarian cancer

Cancer Council NSW 2020 Project Grant recipients:

  • Dr Joanna Achinger-Kawecka, Garvan Institute of Medical Research – Reversing treatment resistance in ER+ breast cancer
  • Dr Omid Faridani, UNSW Sydney – Predicting how a patient will respond to chemotherapy
  • Dr Nicholas Gottardo, Telethon Kids Institute – Developing less toxic treatment approaches for childhood brain cancer
  • Professor Geoffrey McCaughan, Centenary Institute – Using combination therapies to treat liver cancer
  • Dr Michelle McDonald , Garvan Institute of Medical Research – Preventing the outgrowth of cancers that spread to bone
  • Professor Mark Molloy, University of Sydney – Understanding how polyps cause bowel cancer
  • Dr Arjun Muralidharan , University of Sydney – Developing pain-killer neurons to treat chronic pain in advanced cancer
  • A/Professor Matthew Naylor, University of Sydney – Improving identification of aggressive versus slow growing prostate cancer
  • Dr Lorraine O’Reilly, The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research – Identifying the drivers of stomach cancer to find more effective treatments
  • Professor John Rasko, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Centenary Institute – Monitoring a patient’s real-time response to a new immunotherapy
  • Dr Ulf Schmitz, University of Sydney, Centenary Institute – Understanding how genes are regulated in cancer cells
  • A/Professor Alex Swarbrick, Garvan Institute of Medical Research – Developing immunotherapy to treat advanced breast cancer
  • Professor Xu Dong Zhang, The University of Newcastle – A new treatment approach for bowel cancer
Cancer research