In Case You Missed It: Here's What The MTPConnect Team Has Been Up To in October

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10 November 2021

Pictured: The TTRA team and partners held a webinar Information Session on EOIs for Round 2 of the Research Projects funding.

MTPConnect Skills Gap Report calls to position our workforce for post-pandemic prosperity

MTPConnect released the third report in a series developed from a comprehensive ‘root and branch’ analysis of skills gaps in the medical technology, biotechnology and pharmaceutical sector workforce, developed as part of the Researcher Exchange and Development within Industry (REDI) program, operated by MTPConnect for the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF). This new report highlights skills gaps in specific areas that have become more pronounced due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

MTPConnect report outlines challenges and opportunities for Australia’s medicinal cannabis industry

MTPConnect launched a new report on the Australian medicinal cannabis industry which is still developing and, as such, there are many agricultural producers, pharmaceutical manufacturers, medical practitioners, researchers, and industry representative bodies seeking to understand how the industry might - and should - evolve as it matures. Commissioned to provide an evidence base for the current size of Australia's medicinal cannabis industry, as well as future estimates for the sector, the report aims to serve as a valuable resource to inform policymakers, industry and consumers.

Podcast features COVID-19 vaccine development news

This month we delved further into COVID-19 vaccine developments speaking to Oxford Vaccine Group's Dr Maheshi Ramasamy in the UK about leading the clinical trials that gave us the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine. We also reported on a homegrown, second-generation COVID-19 vaccine being developed by South Australian start-up biotech company, Sementis Limited. Listen to both these episodes here or on your favourite podcast platform.

REDI Fellowships eligibility expanded to smaller companies

Due to extensive interest from the sector, the REDI Fellowship Program announced it has expanded eligibility so that smaller companies can apply for a Fellow. The REDI Fellowship program provides companies in the medical technology, biotechnology and pharmaceuticals (MTP) sector with up to $250,000 per annum to bring academics and clinicians in-house for up to twelve months to work on priority medical research projects. Apply by 1 March 2022.

TTRA Research Projects Round Two EOI deadline extended

MTPConnect has extended the deadline for Expressions of Interest (EOI) for Round 2 of the Research Projects funding opportunity within the Targeted Translation Research Accelerator (TTRA) initiative for diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Round 2 EOIs will now close on Thursday 25 November 2021 at 4:00pm AEDT. Further information can be found on our website. The information session is also available as a podcast or a Webinar.

BioMedTech Horizons 1.0 concludes

The BioMedTech Horizons Program Round One concluded with value add activities including a media training event and a Roundtable Meeting. The cohort shared project achievements of their medical device innovations, with presentations by Allegra OrthopaedicsAnatomicsUniversity of Melbourne & St Vincent’s Hospital and Griffith University on their 3D printing projects; and presentations by Bionics InstituteCarina BiotechGarvan Institute of Medical Research and WearOptimo on their precision medicine projects. Stay tuned for the BMTH 1.0 summary report due out in November 2021.  

Telehealth start-up Coviu wins 2021 Australian Technologies Competition

Eleven of Australia's best emerging technology companies were crowned winners at the Australian Technologies Competition (ATC21) national awards ceremony, held virtually from Melbourne. MTPConnect's Senior Director BioMedTech Horizons Program Dr Gerard Gibbs presented the MedTech and Pharma Award to NSW-based start-up Coviu who also took home the title of Australian Technology Company of the Year as stakeholders of the innovation ecosystem across government, private enterprise, the investment and scaleup community watched on. For the sixth consecutive year, MTPConnect sponsored the Medtech and Pharma Category Award with the support of the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources (DISER).

Final ‘foundation stones’ set for future of Australian regenerative medicine

The ‘foundation stones’ for Australia’s regenerative medicine (RM) future are now complete, with the publication of three resources offering new knowledge and benchmarking, purpose, and a firm, unified direction for the industry’s future. Outlined at the AusBiotech 21 Catalysing regenerative medicine in Australia panel discussion (supported by MTPConnect), the Regenerative Medicine Consortium (supported by MTPConnect’s Growth Centre Project Fund Program) has now delivered the final elements of the 12-month project, which collectively demonstrate the breadth of opportunity present in the Australian RM sector.

Bridge Program Virtual Symposium

MTPConnect Managing Director and CEO Dr Dan Grant made the opening presentation at The Bridge Program Virtual Symposium 2021, a two-day program delivered by QUT with leading experts from the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry, and topics focused on discovery and commercialization and how to approach markets.

WA Spotlight on Argenica Therapeutics

MTPConnect’s Director Stakeholder Engagement WA Dr Tracey Wilkinson was joined by Argenica Therapeutics, a company developing novel neuroprotective therapeutics to reduce brain damage after stroke, for the October Spotlight event. CEO Dr Liz Dallimore and Chief Operating Officer Dr Samantha South discussed the development and commercialisation plans for the company’s novel neuroprotective therapeutic, how it will fit within current stroke treatment plans, the importance of having a differentiated approach – and clearly communicating with investors.

Case study: The Chemistry of a Perfect Match for SpeeDx and SynGenis

A new partnership between Perth-based oligonucleotides manufacturer SynGenis and Sydney-based diagnostic company SpeeDx (a Biomedical Translation Bridge (BTB) program Round 1 recipient) has led to an investment and collaboration between the two companies, after they were introduced by MTPConnect. Read the case study here.

GSK Australia's Graduate Researcher Program opens applications

The GSK Graduate Researcher Program is an industry-hosted initiative developed to help bridge the gap between industry and research and supported by MTPConnect’s Researcher Exchange and Development within Industry (REDI) initiative funded by the MRFF.  Applications for the 2022 intake closed on 1 November 2021.

MTPConnect farewells team member

The MTPConnect team farewelled Dr David Fox, Senior Director Sustainability, who will be taking on another role within the MTP sector. Joining MTPConnect in early 2020, David has been a valued member of the team and we would like to thank him for all his efforts and wish him well in his future endeavours.

MTPConnect welcomes new interns

MTPConnect welcomed two new interns with Dr Andionne Parlade taking up an internship as Project Officer working within the REDI program and Kevin Rajasekaran taking up an internship as Stakeholder Engagement Associate within the Stakeholder Engagement team.