Global leader to operate $96 million RNA facility at Macquarie University
Australia’s first-of-its-kind $96 million RNA research and pilot manufacturing facility will be built at Macquarie University and operated by Myeloid Therapeutics.
Minister for Science, Innovation and Technology Alister Henskens said the NSW Liberal and Nationals Government is partnering with Myeloid, alongside one of the country’s leading universities, to support the State’s capability to develop and manufacture RNA-based therapeutics locally, including vaccine production.
“The cutting-edge work that will be done at this world-leading facility has the potential to save lives by accelerating our biomedical research capabilities and boosting early phase clinical trials to combat disease,” Mr Henskens said.
“We have secured a global therapeutics company, co-founded by an Australian researcher, to operate the new facility, which will have strong links into Sydney’s world-renowned innovation ecosystem of research, education and industry experts.”
The facility will be located at Macquarie University’s Wallumattagal campus, in close proximity to the Connect Macquarie Park Innovation District, which is home to a host of medical and health related organisations and industrial and technology start-ups.
Myeloid was selected following a competitive tender process and is an experienced operator with a proven track record in the translation of innovation and managing research facilities.
The facility, which will include laboratories and other support spaces, will be the only site in Australia and one of a handful in the world, where a wide range of RNA therapeutics and potential delivery technologies will be independently produced, providing NSW with scalable manufacturing opportunities that will bolster sovereign capability.
Minister for Health Brad Hazzard said the facility will leverage NSW’s world-class cell and gene therapy expertise, and build on existing investments including the NSW RNA Production & Research Network, the UNSW RNA Institute and Australia’s first Viral Vector Manufacturing Facility at Westmead Health and Innovation District.
“Investing in RNA research and manufacturing will ensure NSW remains a world leader in the development of medical technologies and therapeutics, which will ultimately deliver better patient outcomes, particularly for cancer and rare genetic diseases,” Mr Hazzard said.
“There is also growing demand for RNA therapeutics and products in the biosecurity and agriculture sectors such as new treatments and vaccines for animal diseases.”
Myeloid CEO and co-founder Dr Daniel Getts said as an Australian researcher, he was excited by the opportunity to help drive more opportunities for local innovators, researchers and companies.
“Myeloid is thrilled to partner with NSW and pioneer a ground-breaking manufacturing facility that will accelerate the development and commercialisation of RNA therapeutics, including our immunotherapies for cancer,” Dr Getts said.
Macquarie University Vice-Chancellor Professor S. Bruce Dowton said the new facility would help build a thriving medical precinct in Macquarie Park.
“Our world-leading researchers and clinicians are engaged in answering some of the most urgent medical questions of our time, working to improve diagnosis and treatments for Alzheimer’s disease, motor neurone disease and cancers – all areas where RNA research has tremendous potential,” Professor Dowton said.
An experienced project team which has worked on a range of health, research and manufacturing projects across NSW has been appointed to progress planning and design for the pilot facility, which is due for completion in 2025.
More information about the facility is available online.