Cure Brain Cancer Foundation is thrilled to announce the world’s largest, brain cancer-dedicated, Clinical Accelerator program, to support research discoveries through commercialisation, to accelerate new treatments patients in the region.

The Clinical Accelerator program is part of our commitment to accelerate new treatments to patients as quickly as possible. Worth up to $2 million, it will help Australia and New Zealand grow the capability to bring new drugs and devices to market, and bridges the gap between innovative, early-stage cancer research and successful development of high-impact therapeutic products.

This program fills a gap in the current research commercialisation landscape by supporting translational research in brain cancer. This progresses ideas from early-stage, pre-clinical research, into a therapeutic product that shows proof of concept and viability for industry partnership and investment.

Chair of the Foundation’s Scientific Advisory Committee, Prof Webster Cavenee, commented, “The creativity and dedication of the researchers supported by CBCF is widely recognized. As they, and other investigators worldwide, are increasingly successful in their work, earliest stage potential therapies result. To get these to brain tumor patients as quickly and effectively as possible, they must be developed into approved therapeutic agents. That refinement and development is exactly the purpose of the Clinical Accelerator program and represents an important addition to the multiple ways that CBCF is laboring to enable promise for brain tumor patients.”

It costs approximately USD 2.56 billion in drug discovery and development for one drug to reach FDA approval1. Drugs and new therapies that are developed in laboratories must undergo years of pre-clinical testing and modelling before they progress into human clinical trials. Whilst hundreds of innovations and discoveries take place in research labs each year, only a small number of these ever make it into commercial ventures.

In Australia and New Zealand, there is a significant funding gap, which means that researchers successfully make discoveries, but have difficulty commercialising them and getting them to patients. This funding gap is termed the ‘Valley of Death’, where the risks involved in the development and commercialisation of early-stage scientific research are too high for sophisticated investments, and too late to receive government grant support.

The aim of the Clinical Accelerator is to de-risk investment for pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, to encourage them to develop their most promising agents in brain cancer, and enables leading researchers to advance their pioneering ideas into clinical development.

Foundation CEO, Lance Kawaguchi shared, “This announcement represents our absolute commitment to accelerate treatments to patients as rapidly as possible. This is the largest Clinical Accelerator for brain cancer globally. It means we will de-risk investment for pharmaceutical and biotech companies to encourage them to develop their most promising agents in brain cancer and enables leading researchers to advance their pioneering ideas into clinical development.”

The Clinical Accelerator Program will pilot in 2021, with the intention of establishing an annual competition which is subject to funding available and program success.

More information on eligibility and how to apply will be released in the coming weeks via our website and social media channels.


  1. DiMasi, J. A., Grabowski, H. G., & Hansen, R. W. (2016). Innovation in the pharmaceutical industry: New estimates of R&D costs. Journal of health economics47, 20–33.