The Hon. Greg Hunt MP
Minister for Health
Ben Morton MP
Member for Tangney
6 February 2019
The Liberal National Government is investing $10 million in research that will help use a person’s DNA and their environment to help create personalised medicine for a multitude of medical conditions including obesity, autism, and type 2 diabetes.
The funding will go to the Perth-based Australian National Phenome Centre at Murdoch University, which is set to revolutionise the diagnosis, prevention and precision treatment of numerous medical conditions.
Precision and personalised medicine promises to transform the way we practice medicine.
A person’s phenome is a snapshot of their unique biology that results from complex interactions between their DNA and their environment, which includes factors relating to diet, lifestyle and exposure to pollutants.
Analysing these biological “fingerprints” helps researchers better understand the underlying causes of disease and ultimately to develop personalised therapies and treatments.
Using the Australian National Phenome Centre’s sophisticated range of cutting-edge technologies, researchers plan to map the phenomes of large sections of the population, giving them a window into environmental and social factors influencing health trends and providing generations with a “crystal ball” to look into their future health risks.
Researchers will have a particular focus on the detection, treatment and prevention of obesity, autism, and type 2 diabetes among children and the Australian Indigenous population.
The Australian National Phenome Centre is Australia’s first dedicated metabolic phenotyping laboratory and a hub within an international network of compatible centres.
In addition, Western Australia provides a unique, contained population to collect such information from and has a history of successful population studies.
The Centre brings together all five Western Australian universities and leading health and medical research institutes: the University of Western Australia, Curtin University, Murdoch University, University of Notre Dame Australia and Edith Cowan University.
This funding comes from our Government’s landmark Medical Research Future Fund.
The Medical Research Future Fund is an endowment fund, which will mature at $20 billion, providing a sustainable source of funding for vital medical research.
It is the single largest boost in health and medical research funding in Australia’s history.
Our Government’s strong economic management means we can make sure more patients have access to more life-saving medicines and medical research that will save lives.