MTPConnect funds Certara-Monash University program

Thursday, October 26, 2017

MTPConnect (the Medical Technologies and Pharmaceuticals Industry Growth Centre) will provide a proposed AUD750,000 provisional funding to the CertaraMonash University Industry Fellowship Program over two years, with proposed matched funding of AUD750,000 coming from Certara. Together, this funding will allow the Certara-Monash University Industry Fellowship Program to identify and develop the next generation of industry-experienced drug development scientists through training in clinical pharmacology, pharmacometrics and regulatory science to help shape the future and sustainability of the medical research sector in Australia. The program will be located at Monash University Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences and will involve a combination of academic coursework, hands-on industry training, international industry/academic placements and research.

The project is led by Certara Australia and the Monash University Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences and will include collaborators from the medical research sector, publicly-funded research organisations, and biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. The vision for the Fellowship program is for it to become the premier drug development science training program in Australia and the broader Asia-Pacific region.

“Computer modeling and simulation has progressed from being a scientific nicety to a regulatory necessity. It is now employed at every step along the drug development pathway from discovery through clinical trials to post-marketing. Modeling and simulation has been adopted by biopharmaceutical companies and regulatory agencies worldwide, including the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration, Japanese Pharmaceutical and Medical Devices Agency, FDA and EMA to answer critical regulatory questions,” said Certara Chief Executive Officer Dr. Edmundo Muniz.

“As the global leader in model-informed drug development and regulatory science, Certara is committed to helping train the next generation of industry-experienced drug development scientists with real-world drug development strategy. We are proud to partner with Monash University to launch this national Fellowship program and share our expertise with post-graduates embarking on a career in this exciting, rewarding and rapidly-growing field. We are delighted that MTPConnect shares our vision and is strategically investing in Australia’s future drug development scientists,” Dr. Muniz added.

“Monash University has partnered with Certara’s d3 Medicine company for many years on modeling and simulation projects ranging from pandemic infectious disease preparedness programs to new respiratory viral agents and anti-cancer therapies. We look forward to continuing our successful collaboration. Through this Fellowship program, our students will receive real-world experience and learn valuable skills that are already in great demand,” said Professor Carl M. Kirkpatrick, Director of the Centre of Medicine Use and Safety at Monash University.

“We are thrilled to be strengthening our collaboration with Certara on this Fellowship program. The matched funding provided by MTPConnect and Certara provides an outstanding opportunity to produce the future leaders in model-informed drug development for the Asia-Pacific region,” said Professor Bill Charman, Dean Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Monash University.

MTPConnect’s Project Fund Program is a competitive, dollar-for-dollar matched funding program investing in big, bold ideas to improve the productivity, competitiveness and innovative capacity of Australia’s medical technology, biotechnology and pharmaceutical sector. MTPConnect is supported by the Australian Government’s Industry Growth Centres Initiative.

This year, MTPConnect has selected 20 national MTP projects to receive $7.385 million in funding over two years with proposed matched funding of $15.2 million coming from the sector. Last year, the launch of the program saw 14 projects receive $7.4 million in funding over two years, with matched funding of $32 million. Following the success of these projects, this year’s program received significant interest from the sector, with 33 applications from industry, research organisations and universities to share in the funding available, with a proposed $25.8 million of matched funding coming from the sector.

Sue MacLeman, CEO of MTPConnect, said, “MTPConnect is focused on harnessing Australia’s world-class research to seize more commercialization opportunities and accelerate growth. As part of our mission, we are funding big, bold ideas that will deliver results on a national scale, have sector-wide impact, and are aligned with the Sector Growth Priorities we have identified in our 10-year Sector Competitiveness Plan. By supporting projects such as the Certara-Monash University Industry Fellowship Program, we believe we can develop a more vibrant MTP sector ecosystem with more successful companies, and ultimately improve the health and wellbeing of Australia and the world.”

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