Date published: 
9 March 2018
Media type: 
Media release
General public

The Turnbull Government is calling for applications from the country’s best and brightest researchers to help find new treatments for low survival cancers and diseases.

Researchers will share in $10 million to improve the survival rates and outcomes for patients.

Low survival rate cancers are estimated to cause nearly 40 per cent of total cancer deaths in 2017.

This funding will create opportunities for new clinical trials to redress these devastating survival rates associated with some of our cruellest of cancers and diseases.

While we have seen improved survival rates for high incidence cancers such as bowel cancer, rates for rare cancers have remained relatively unchanged for some time.

And people living with low survival diseases and their health professionals face many challenges, including delays in diagnosis, difficulties accessing treatments, and finding the right care.

We are committed to continuing to invest in research to find the answers to these challenges.

Clinical trials targeting low survival cancers and diseases with higher relative mortality rates - such as mesothelioma, pancreatic and lung cancer and/or spinal muscular atrophy and other low survival conditions - could potentially be funded under this program.

Australia is a world leader in medical researcher and we will continue to invest significantly to provide better health outcomes for Australian patients.

The funding announced today is available under the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) Low Survival Cancers and Diseases Grant Opportunity.

Clinical trials provide better options for treatment and build evidence to improve, while strengthening Australia’s position as a preferred destination for clinical trials.

Only in January, we received an overwhelming response to the first MRFF clinical trial grant round, with 19 clinical trials funded with $26.6 million.

An additional $33 million in grants will also be made available in 2018–19 to support clinical trials under the MRFF.

The grant opportunity will remain open until 18 April 2018. Details for applicants are available on the National Health and Medical Research Council's website.