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Accelerating diabetes and cardiovascular disease research

13 July 2020

Joint media release with the Minister for Health, the Hon Greg Hunt MP

The Morrison Government is backing cutting-edge research into two of the most prominent health conditions that affect millions of Australians – diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

The Government will invest $47 million over four years into a new program to accelerate research into preventing, diagnosing and treating the conditions.

Minister for Health Greg Hunt said the program would bring together industry, researchers, clinical organisations, businesses and philanthropists to deliver results.

“Diabetes and cardiovascular disease affects millions of Australians and this research will make a difference in the lives of so many people,” Minister Hunt said.

“It will also save lives. Heart disease kills one Australian every 12 minutes, while diabetes causes more than one in ten deaths in our nation.

“This investment will consolidate research being done and see ideas developed into outcomes more quickly.”

Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews said the nature of the investment meant there was also great economic potential.

“You can’t put a price on health, but this investment will unlock collaboration that is going to save lives as well as commercialise ideas which can grow our economy and create Australian jobs. 

“A key focus of this accelerator will be on bringing new and innovative drugs and devices to market which can help Australians but also be sold to the world.

“The med tech sector is incredibly vibrant in Australia but the coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the opportunities for us to grow that even further.”

MTPConnect – one of the Federal Government’s Industry Growth Centres – will deliver this initiative in collaboration with an independent Board of experts.

The Board members are: 

  • Professor John Shine AC (Co-Chair), biochemist and molecular biologist, President, Australian Academy of Science; University of New South Wales
  • Professor Ian Frazer AC (Co-Chair), clinical immunologist, co-inventor of the HPV vaccine – University of Queensland
  • Rebecca Davies AO, lived experience of diabetes and heart disease as parent and wife; member of the Consumer and Community Health Innovations Advisory Committee; Director, Chris O’Brien Lifehouse
  • Judi Moylan AO, former Australian Government Minister; former Chair, Diabetes Australia; Chair of NHMRC Community and Consumer Committee
  • Adjunct Professor John Kelly AM, CEO, Heart Foundation of Australia
  • Professor James Best AO, Dean, Lee Kong Chain School of Medicine; Director, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) Australia
  • Professor Rachel Huxley, academic, researcher and epidemiologist focusing on chronic disease – Deakin University
  • Yasser El-Ansary, Chief Executive, Australian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association
  • Mike Wilson OAM, CEO, JDRF Australia

This funding is part of the Morrison Government’s ten year, $260 million Preventive and Public Health Research Initiative, under the Medical Research Future Fund. 

Further information on the MRFF is available at www.health.gov.au/mrff.

Media contact: Minister Andrews' office 6277 7070