Hudson Institute has a strong track record of discoveries and commercialisation.
Building on our beginnings as Monash Institute of Medical Research and Prince Henry’s Institute, we are now forging forward and supporting the translation of our science into the community where it will have the most benefit.
Our translational success has been the result of strong partnerships with industry and academia, including collaborative R&D, start-up incubation, and nurturing longer-term relationships with biotechnology partners.
Creating next generation medicines: Collaboration with industry
In 2016, a research collaboration between the Swiss-based healthcare company Roche (F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd and Hoffmann-La Roche Inc.), Monash University and Hudson Institute was announced. The collaboration aims to develop next generation treatments for autoimmune diseases, focused on proteins targeting novel molecular pathways.
Arising from work by Associate Professor Marcel Nold and Associate Professor Claudia Nold from Hudson Institute and Monash University’s Department of Paediatrics, and Professor James Whisstock and Dr Andrew Ellisdon from the Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute, the project will combine skills in clinical immunology, cytokine research and drug development approaches. The partnership will enable the multi-disciplinary research team and Roche to work together to advance and translate existing and new intellectual property into novel treatments.
Based on results from the research collaboration, Roche has the option to exclusively licence the intellectual property for development and commercialisation of proteins targeting novel molecular pathways in return for significant development and commercial milestone payments and royalties on product sales.
Nexvet’s early research and development was based at Hudson Institute, giving the team vital space to validate their proprietary platform technology, PETization. This technology allows monoclonal antibodies to be recognised as ‘native’ by an animal’s immune system, and led to the development of Nexvet’s product candidates.
Nexvet co-founder Dr David Gearing was working in commercialisation at Monash University when he recognised a gap in the market for antibody-based therapeutic drugs and pain relief for companion pets, such as dogs and cats.
Friends and contacts provided seed funding, while Hudson Institute provided a lab bench and a part-time scientist so Nexvet could set about testing the hypothesis that animals could respond to antibody therapies.
“That was the start, half a bench and half a scientist,” Dr Gearing said.
“Hudson Institute gave us a huge advantage in the start-up stage by providing us with a managed laboratory space and a collaborative environment, it’s an excellent environment for anyone wanting to start a biotech. The Institute’s done a fantastic job of nurturing our business.”
Within three years, Nexvet’s staff had increased tenfold from 0.5 to five staff members. Further growth necessitated a move off-site, and Nexvet sought its own laboratory space. Becoming one of the few Australian biotechs to list on the NASDAQ in the United States, growth and success continued with Nexvet acquired by global animal health company, Zoetis, for US$85 million in 2017.
Licensing and partnerships: Building success together
Our ground-breaking discoveries and research expertise has led to the development of successful diagnostic tools and laboratory reagents, shared worldwide through partnerships and licensing agreements.
One of the key discoveries to arise from Hudson’s history was the discovery and isolation of the reproductive hormone inhibin. Since our days as Prince Henry’s Institute, a patent portfolio has developed around inhibin and its use, with a licensing agreement in place since 2002. This discovery has been translated into diagnostic tests for Down syndrome and some ovarian cancers.
Long-running license agreements have also seen reagents such as antibodies provided to the research community for use in exchange for royalty payments. Research partnerships have enabled long-term collaboration between academia and industry leading to potential new therapeutics, and clinical trials in areas such as oncology, paediatrics, and women’s health.
In an effort to share our expertise more broadly, in 2018 Hudson became the third Australian-based partner of Ximbio. An online global resource for reagents and research tools, Ximbio provides our scientists a platform to share their research reagents for both academic and commercial use.
Since 2017 Hudson Institute has been registered as a Research Service Provider with the Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation and Science. This enables us to provide R&D services using our world-class scientific and technical expertise, facilities, and infrastructure with potential for access to the Australian Government’s R&D Tax Incentive.
For more information on how you can partner with Hudson Institute, see our Partnership Opportunities, Contract Research Opportunities, or contact the Business Development Office.