What is the Australian Brain Cancer Mission?

The Australian Brain Cancer Mission supports research into brain cancer treatments. It will provide $133 million in research funding over 10 years.

Why is the Australian Brain Cancer Mission important?

Around 2000 Australians develop brain cancer every year. Over the last 30 years, the number of people surviving other types of cancers has steadily improved. However, the survival rate for brain cancer has stayed low, at around 22%.

There are more than 100 different types of brain cancer. We need more research to discover new treatments and improve survival.

What are the goals of the Australian Brain Cancer Mission?

The Australian Brain Cancer Mission aims to:

  • double the survival rate of Australians living with brain cancer over the next 10 years
  • improve quality of life for people with brain cancer
  • give every patient (adult and child) a chance to join a clinical trial
  • boost Australian research and build research capacity.

In the long term, the Mission aims to defeat brain cancer.

How will we meet these goals?

The Mission’s first steps towards these goals are to:

  • support the ZERO Childhood Cancer initiative. This initiative makes sure all Australian children with high-risk brain cancer receive individual treatment for their particular tumour type (known as personalised medicine)
  • improve access to international clinical trials through groups such as the Australia New Zealand Children's Haematology and Oncology Group (ANZCHOG) and the Cooperative Trials Group for Neuro-Oncology (COGNO)
  • provide grants for new clinical trials, including joining international trials
  • review existing national care standards, decision support and clinical pathways for patients
  • determine if existing brain cancer research platforms and technologies are meeting researchers’ needs

See the initiative snapshot for details of how we plan to meet these goals.

MRFF snapshot – Australian Brain Cancer Mission

This snapshot shows this mission at a glance. It includes budgets, early funding priorities and grant timelines, as of November 2019. Researchers and other stakeholders can use it to plan for upcoming opportunities and see how the mission will be established, expanded and embedded over time.

Who works with us on the Australian Brain Cancer Mission?

A Strategic Advisory Group advises government on the priorities for the Mission.

Cancer Australia manages the Strategic Advisory Group for the Mission.

Our Health and Medical Research Office coordinates this Mission.

Funding for the Australian Brain Cancer Mission comes from:

  • the Australian Government’s Medical Research Future Fund 
  • philanthropic contributions

Apply for funding

Researchers can register with GrantConnect to receive notifications about future funding opportunities under this Mission.


Upcoming grants

There are currently no upcoming grant opportunities.

Open grant rounds

There are no open grant rounds. 

Grants being assessed

No grants are currently being assessed.

Grants awarded

We have awarded or announced the following grants under this initiative, as at 25 March 2021.

Funded Institution

Project Name

Chief Investigator/s

Total Funding

Monash University

Australian and New Zealand Children's Haematology/ Oncology Group

Not applicable


University of Sydney

Cooperative Trials Group for Neuro-Oncology

Not applicable


University of New South Wales

Zero Childhood Brain Cancer program

Professor Michelle Haber


La Trobe University

Prospective, multicentre trial evaluating FET-PET in high grade glioma (FIG Study)

Professor Andrew Scott


University of Sydney

LUMOS (Low & Intermediate Grade Glioma Umbrella Study of Molecular Guided Therapies)

Associate Professor Hui Gan


University of Sydney

Brain cancer Rehabilitation, Assessment, Intervention of survivor Needs

Not applicable


University of New South Wales

A new nurse–led intervention to re–engage childhood brain cancer survivors

Not applicable


University of Melbourne

Responding to need: technology-enhanced brain cancer survivorship

Professor Kate Drummond




We have also funded 4 brain cancer–related research grants as part of the Clinical Trials Activity initiative (Rare Cancers, Rare Diseases and Unmet Needs programs). Three of these received additional philanthropic funding from the Carrie’s Beanies 4 Brain Cancer Foundation and the Mark Hughes Foundation.

Related information

See a list of all MRFF grant recipients.


For more information, contact us.

Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) contact

Contact for more information about the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF), or to provide feedback on the MRFF website.

General enquiries:
MRFF [at] health.gov.au
MRFF website or newsletter feedback:
HMRO [at] health.gov.au

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Cancer Australia

Cancer Australia (CA) aims to reduce the impact of cancer, improve outcomes for people affected by cancer and lead and coordinate national, evidence-based interventions for cancer control and care.

View contact

Last updated: 
31 March 2021