What We Do

What We Do

By working towards a suitably defined target product profile (TPP) that addresses unmet medical needs, the complimentary capabilities of ATMCF and its ancillary partners are combined to achieve a fully integrated drug discovery platform.

The Need for a Medicinal Chemistry Facility in Australia

Australia is home to a large group of world-class, government-funded, institutions and research groups that make significant inroads into a better understanding of the biological basis of diseases, for the general improvement of human health.

Translation of this research into therapeutic outcomes for patients is reliant on the discovery and optimisation of small-molecules that exploit these discoveries in the design of drug candidates for clinical development.

Recognition of the gap in early phase medicinal chemistry led to State (VSA) and Federal (EIF) investments in ATMCF to establish a purpose-built facility for the translation of biological discoveries into value-added therapeutics.

These translational efforts, and the associated intellectual property (patented inventions) that emerge from them, will also provide a solid basis to attract commercial investments, and receive monetary returns for reinvestment into basic science.

Our Main Scope

ATMCF is an essential element in the higher-level and broader Virtual Pharma Drug Development Network (VPDDN), being established and advanced by Therapeutic Innovation Australia (TIA).

ATMCF will fill the gap in the translation, linking early stage research in disease biology to its targeted clinical use and its inherent commercial value.
In addition to our commitment to bridging the gap in translation for Australian public sector researchers, we welcome the opportunity to partner with private organisations or companies, as well as international research groups.

We optimise small bio-active molecules into high performance drug candidates by making them more drug-like, potent, selective and efficacious, and in a clear space for licensing.

  • We work strategically with partners in a cost-effective manner to navigate through the pitfalls of drug discovery, by working through key-decision gates, e.g. suitability of molecules as starting points for optimisation, intellectual properties, target-validation, and proof-of-concept studies. Subject to the proof-of-concept, we undertake a medicinal chemistry-directed optimisation to ensure that the target product profile for the drug candidate is met.
  • Based on the specified agreements, we can collaborate from the starting molecules through to a well characterised and optimised drug candidate, and assist with further pre-clinical development for clinical trials, or we can pass the optimised compounds (or lead-series) and the associated IP back to the partner.
  • We can undertake more targeted efforts in the synthesis, such as by carefully designing pharmacological probes, generating specific active compounds including natural products, and introducing bio-conjugation of small-molecules into targeting peptides.
  • ATMCF has seamless and facilitated access to a number of ancillary partners to excel in medicinal chemistry and ADME-lead optimisation.

More on this in our 'Capabilities' page.

Intellectual Property

  • Generally owned by the partner-client – but we are flexible and open to shared risk models
  • We are well experienced in working at the university/commercial interface
  • Confidentiality is integral to all of our projects and we fully adhere to Confidentiality Disclosure Agreements (CDAs)
  • Swipe access to the Facility is tightly controlled
  • All laboratory notebooks and inventory systems are in digital and maintained with high-standard intellectual property compliance.

The Wider Scope of Drug Research and Our Ancillary Partners

ATMCF is fortunately housed within the Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences (MIPS), which also hosts the Centre for Drug Candidate Optimisation (CDCO).

The CDCO conducts world-class research in all aspects of pharmacokinetic assessment and has shared multiple international awards for its work, including a few "Project of the Year" Awards from MMV (Medicines for Malaria Venture).

Collectively, MIPS scientists have been involved in research programs that have led to more than 20 new drug candidates and drug delivery systems advancing to human clinical trials, three of which have now been approved as new medicines for human use around the world.