Genomics Health Futures Mission

The Genomics Health Futures Mission is investing $500.1 million in genomic research. It will improve testing and diagnosis for many diseases, help personalise treatment options to better target and improve health outcomes, and reduce unnecessary interventions and health costs.

About the Genomics Health Futures Mission

The Genomics Health Futures Mission is investing $500.1 million in genomic medicine research.  Genomics is a technology that can transform clinical medicine.

Genomics can use information about genes to:

  • identify genetic disorders
  • diagnose rare diseases more quickly (about 80% of all rare diseases are genetic in origin)
  • predict their likely response to different treatments, so doctors can more precisely tailor treatment for individuals
  • predict their risk of developing disease, which can guide prevention strategies
  • classify cancerous tumours to guide treatment choices.

The Genomics Health Futures Mission will build on existing research to demonstrate the benefits of genomics and related technologies for patients and the health system. As the use of genomics becomes more widespread, there will be increasing opportunities to tailor and refine the management of disease. This means more expensive and avoidable diagnostic procedures and treatments will stop.

Why it is important

This Genomics Health Futures Mission supports research to:

  • improve testing and diagnosis for many diseases
  • help personalise treatment options to better target and improve health outcomes
  • reduce unnecessary interventions and health costs

The Genomics Health Futures Mission funds research to integrate genomic knowledge and technology into clinical practice. This research will support clinical use of genomics that is:

  • safe
  • cost-effective
  • equitable
  • sensitive to the associated ethical, legal and social issues of using genomic information in health care

The Genomics Health Futures Mission will bring hope to Australians suffering diseases that are life threatening and currently untreatable.

Objectives

The objective of the Genomics Health Futures Mission is to save or transform the lives of more than 200,000 Australians through genomic research to deliver better testing, diagnosis and treatment.

It will:

  • help Australia move towards routine use of genomics in healthcare
  • support new clinical trials and technology applications allowing Australian patients to benefit from the latest medical research
  • create a new highly skilled workforce and new career pathways
  • support new industries
  • talk with the Australian community to share the value of genomics
  • listen and respond to the perspective of communities on issues like privacy, family impact, and the legal and social aspects of using genomics in health care
  • support development of secure data storage, access, analysis and sharing to benefit Australians.

Meeting our objectives

The Genomics Health Futures Mission Expert Advisory Committee has developed a Roadmap and Implementation Plan to advise the Minister for Health and Aged Care on the strategic priorities for research investment through the Mission.

The draft Roadmap and Implementation Plan were reviewed by an international panel of experts on 11 November 2020 who provided expert feedback and advice in the context of relevant activities occurring internationally. See the Genomics Health Futures Mission International Review of the Roadmap and Implementation Plan report.

The draft Roadmap and Implementation Plan also underwent a national consultation between 14 December 2020 and 23 April 2021 to seek community feedback on these documents. See the Genomics Health Futures Mission Roadmap and Implementation Plan National Consultation Report.

Based on the feedback from the international review panel and the national consultation, changes were made to the final Roadmap and Implementation Plan.

The Roadmap and Implementation Plan for the Genomics Health Futures Mission were published in October 2021 and will be used to develop the Mission’s grant opportunities.

Early investments under the Genomics Health Futures Mission include:

  • Mackenzie’s Mission, the Australian Reproductive Carrier Screening Project. This project offers genetic screening to couples to:
    • identify couples with an increased chance of having children with serious genetic conditions
    • test for conditions where early treatment can improve a child’s health
  • ProCan. This project is developing a comprehensive research database of genomic information related to cancer. It will help develop technologies and tools to more precisely diagnose and treat individual cancer patients. This will improve survival rates and avoid unnecessary treatments that will not work for each patient. ProCan involves cancer researchers across Australia and around the world.

Who we work with

The Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) funds the Mission.

The Genomics Health Futures Mission Expert Advisory Committee provides advice to the Minister for Health and Aged Care on the strategic priorities for research investment through the Mission by developing a Roadmap and Implementation Plan.  We recently invited expressions of interest for the next expert advisory panel. Applications closed 23 October 2023. We will provide information about the new panel when available.

Our Health and Medical Research Office oversees this and other MRFF initiatives.

The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and the Department of Industry, Science and Resources administer this Mission.

Apply for funding

View the MRFF grants calendar to see which grants are open, when applications close and when we expect to award funding.

Register with GrantConnect to receive notifications about future funding opportunities under this Mission.

Grants awarded

See a list of all MRFF grant recipients.

Monitoring, evaluation and learning

We have engaged Nous Group to undertake a review of the Genomics Health Futures Mission. Nous Group will assess the Genomics Health Futures Mission’s progress in:

We have also engaged Australian Genomics to undertake the desktop review component of this evaluation

We expect the review findings will be available in mid-2024 and will help inform future investments through the Genomics Health Futures Mission.

More information is available from MRFF.evaluations@health.gov.au.

 

Contact

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 website or newsletter feedback:

National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)

The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) funds high quality health and medical research to build research capability, support researchers, encourage the translation of research into better health outcomes and promote the highest ethical standards for health and medical research.

Department of Industry, Science and Resources

Contact the Department of Industry, Science and Resources from 8am to 8pm, Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays).
Medical Research Future Fund enquiries
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