Explore Victoria’s strengths in the oncology pipeline – from research through to clinical trials and commercialisation.
Oncology is the investigation into the cause, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer. Cancer imposes a significant burden on the Victorian community with over 33,000 Victorians diagnosed with cancer each year.
Growing since the mid-1930s, when the Victorian Anti-Cancer Council (now Cancer Council Victoria) began its campaign to combat the disease, Victoria has a mature and diverse oncology ecosystem and is home to several significant centres and collaborations that bring together the best of cancer care, research, and education.
About Dr. Megan Robertson
Dr Megan Robertson is an alumna of the University of Melbourne where she completed a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS). She is the current Director of Research at St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne, and works as a Senior Intensivist at Epworth HealthCare (Richmond and Freemasons).
Megan is on the boards of BioMedical Research Victoria, the Caroline Chisolm Centre for Health Ethics and FearLess (PTSD-ANZ), the Biodevices Advisory Board at the ARC Training Centre in Biodevices at Swinburne University, and the Tuckwell Scholarship Selection Panel at ANU.
Megan also works with national bodies including the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Healthcare, AusBioTech, and the National Health and Medical Research Council. Previously, she held positions as the Director of Professional Affairs, CICM, as the Executive Director of Research at Epworth HealthCare, and as the Co-Director of the Intensive Care Unit at Epworth Freemasons.
About Ricky Johnstone
Ricky Johnstone has a range of roles including Executive Director Cancer Research at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre where he oversees more than 700 staff and students. He is also the Head of The Sir Peter MacCallum Department of Oncology at The University of Melbourne.
Ricky is also an interim Board Director at Nexomics.
Ricky's research has followed a translational pathway that fully integrates fundamental cancer and immunological research, pre-clinical development through to testing of novel therapeutic regimes.
His research program has three major themes:
- Defining the molecular events underpinning anti-cancer drug action and resistance
- Dissecting the role of altered epigenetics and transcription in tumour onset and progression and targeting epigenetic and transcription elongation enzymes to treat cancer
- Integrating epigenetic- and immune-based therapeutics to provide more potent and durable therapeutic outcomes.
About Jane Gaunson
Jane Gaunson works in Clinical Research as the Head of Study Management at GSK Australia.
She has extensive experience in all aspects of clinical trial operations from Phase I to Phase IV with early phase oncology studies a particular focus throughout her career.
Jane is passionate about building the oncology ecosystem and facilitating an interface between industry and clinicians.
Why choose Melbourne, Victoria, Australia?
This podcast series highlights Victoria's strengths in the research pipeline throughout the full clinical trials process.
- Victoria is recognised as an international leader in clinical trials, with one-third of Australian clinical trials activity taking place here.
- Victoria is home to exceptionally high-quality research and facilities including, 150 public and 161 private hospitals where clinical trials can be conducted.
- Victoria has a highly efficient ethics and regulatory framework including a single ethical review and the Clinical Trials Notification Scheme – a global benchmark in best practice in reducing the regulatory burden on clinical trial sponsors.
- Victoria boasts one of the world’s most diverse populations which in turn creates a diverse participant recruitment pool.
- Victoria's R&D Tax Incentive offered to both Australian and international-owned companies makes access to Australian R&D tax benefits for conducting clinical trials more efficient.