ANU and NCI staff attend the PrOSPeCT launch event

PrOSPeCT (Precision Oncology Screening Platform Enabling Clinical Trials), is Australia’s largest cancer genomics initiative, officially launched on 27 July 2023 with the aim of revolutionizing cancer treatment and providing new hope for patients with difficult-to-treat cancers.

The program will promote precision medicine, unite Australia’s top cancer institutes, researchers, industry partners, and government bodies, and offer free genomic profiling to 23,000 Australians who are battling incurable or advanced cancers, including sarcomas and ovarian and pancreatic cancers.

PrOSPeCT is a landmark program initiated by OMICO, which seeks to integrate genomic technology with innovative clinical trials to bring precision oncology trials to the Australian community.

One of the program’s key objectives is to foster collaboration between Australia’s renowned cancer research institutes, researchers, industry partners, and government entities. PrOSPeCT seeks to create a robust network of expertise and resources to advance cancer research and improve patient care by uniting these stakeholders like never before. The core partners supporting PrOSPect are National Computational Infrastructure at ANU (NCI), Roche Australia, and Children’s Cancer Institute Australia (CCIA).

Professor Ute Roessner, Academic Director, Research Initiatives and Infrastructure, ANU said: "ANU is very proud of NCI's participation in PrOSPeCT which we see as a regional hub for cancer drug development and health analytics. We look forward to seeing PrOSPeCT's impact on the ANU and national biomedical research”

NCI is Australia’s leading high-performance data, storage, and computing organization, that aims to radically enhance the high-performance computational methods and capabilities available to Australians in all domains.

NCI's Director, Prof Sean Smith said: “We’re delighted to be one of the key stakeholders of PrOSPeCT which brings additional precision oncology clinical trials to Australians with cancer. Our integrated hardware, service, and expertise drive high-impact research and ground-breaking outcomes for Australia, and we’re now delighted to extend this impact into the health domain”. 

The official launch of PrOSPeCT took place at the University of NSW Sydney's Kensington Campus by the Hon Emma McBride MP, Assistant Federal Minister for Mental Health and Suicide Prevention, and the Hon Ryan Park MP Minister for Regional Health.

Their presence underscores the significance of this initiative in the fight against cancer and highlights the commitment of government and health authorities to support cutting-edge research and precision medicine against cancer in Australia.

Dr Warren Kaplan - Science Lead for genomics and biomedical data at NCI said: “Clinicians and researchers with patient cohorts and appropriate patient consent will be able to leverage NCI’s work on PrOSPeCT and its investment in infrastructure, cybersecurity, and big data computation to maximize the clinical, research and commercial impact of their patient data.”

PrOSPeCT's formal launch signifies a new era in Australia's cancer genomics research and treatment possibilities. With its focus on precision oncology, screening, and enabling clinical trials, this initiative holds promise for those facing difficult-to-treat cancers by offering innovative solutions tailored to their unique genetic profiles.