Certara-Monash University Industry Fellowship Program receives funding from MTPConnect

26 October 2017

A successful partnership between Monash University and global drug developer Certara will expand to develop the next generation drug development scientists with new funding announced today from the Medical Technologies and Pharmaceuticals Industry Growth Centre (MTPConnect).

MTPConnect- today announced it will provide a proposed AUD$750,000 provisional funding to the Certara-Monash University Industry Fellowship Program over two years, with proposed matched funding of AUD$750,000 coming from Certara®.

Together, $1.5 million will allow the Certara-Monash University Industry Fellowship Program to identify and develop the next generation of industry-experienced drug development scientists   through training in clinical pharmacology, pharmacometrics and regulatory science to help shape the future and sustainability of the medical research sector in Australia.

The vision for the fellowship program is for it to become the premier drug development science training program in Australia and the broader Asia-Pacific region.

It will involve a combination of academic coursework, hands-on industry training, international industry/academic placements and research.

Director of the Centre of Medicine Use and Safety, Carl Kirkpatrick, said Monash University had partnered with Certara’s d3 Medicine company for many years on modeling and simulation projects ranging from pandemic infectious disease preparedness programs to new respiratory viral agents and anti-cancer therapies.

“We look forward to continuing our successful collaboration. Through this Fellowship program, our students will receive real-world experience and learn valuable skills that are already in great demand,” Professor Kirkpatrick said.

Certara Chief Executive Officer, Dr Edmundo Muniz, said the project would include collaborators from the medical research sector, publicly-funded research organisations, and biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies.

“Computer modelling and simulation has progressed from being a scientific nicety to a regulatory necessity. It is now employed at every step along the drug development pathway from discovery through clinical trials to post-marketing. Modeling and simulation has been adopted by biopharmaceutical companies and regulatory agencies worldwide, including the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration, Japanese Pharmaceutical and Medical Devices Agency, US Food and Drug Administration, and European Medicines Agency to answer critical regulatory questions ,” Dr Muniz said.

“As the global leader in model-informed drug development and regulatory science, Certara is committed to helping train the next generation of industry-experienced drug development scientists   with real-world drug development strategy. We are proud to partner with Monash University to launch this national Fellowship program and share our expertise with post-graduates embarking on a career in this exciting, rewarding and rapidly-growing field. We are delighted that MTPConnect shares our vision and is strategically investing in Australia’s future drug development scientists .”

Dean of the Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Professor Bill Charman said the University’s collaboration with Certara would provide new opportunities for Australia’s future drug development scientists  as well as drug development globally.

“We are thrilled to be strengthening our collaboration with Certara on this Fellowship program.

The matched funding provided by MTPConnect and Certara provides an outstanding opportunity to produce the future leaders in model-informed drug development for the Asia-Pacific region,” Professor Charman said.

MTPConnect’s Project Fund Program is a competitive, dollar-for-dollar matched funding program investing in big, bold ideas to improve the productivity, competitiveness and innovative capacity of Australia’s medical technology, biotechnology and pharmaceutical sector.

MTPConnect is supported by the Australian Government’s Industry Growth Centres Initiative.

CEO of MTPConnect, Sue MacLeman, said MTPConnect was focused on harnessing Australia’s world-class research to seize more commercialisation opportunities and accelerate growth.

“As part of our mission, we are funding big, bold ideas that will deliver results on a national scale, have sector-wide impact, and are aligned with the Sector Growth Priorities we have identified in our 10-year Sector Competitiveness Plan.

“By supporting projects such as the Certara-Monash University Industry Fellowship Program, we believe we can develop a more vibrant MTP sector ecosystem with more successful companies, and ultimately improve the health and wellbeing of Australia and the world.”

For more information on MTPConnect’s Project Fund Program and the successful applicants, visit: www.mtpconnect.org.au/2017projects