Cochlear implants, pacemakers, spray-on skin…Australia’s medical scientists keep punching above their weight in transforming patient care through innovation.
And we’re supporting their life-changing work by investing our members' super in medical research, creating a better future for you, your industry and our community.
One of our private equity investment managers, Brandon Capital Partners, steers the Medical Research Commercialisation Fund (MRCF). The MRCF is a collaboration of 50 plus research institutes and hospitals in Australia and New Zealand focused on developing Australia’s latest medical breakthroughs.
The GKC watch is revolutionsing care for Parkinsons patients
In a unique collaboration, the MRCF works with research institutes to identify promising medical discoveries that could be commercialised and translated into real-world products or treatments. The MRCF provides the funding and market know how to help researchers take their work from the lab to the world.
Brandon Capital Managing Director and MRCF Chief Executive Dr Chris Nave is a strong supporter of driving medical innovation to improve public health.
“The MRCF collaboration is innovation in action: we provide a path for taking medical science out of the laboratory and into the real world,” Chris says. “We give elite medical researchers access to capital and commercial expertise, so they can turn great science into cutting-edge medical therapies that save lives and can improve quality of life.”
New technology for Parkinson’s patients
A standout venture within the MCRF portfolio is Global Kinetics Corporation (GKC), a medtech company providing point-of-care measurement and reporting of Parkinson's disease motor symptoms. Their lead product, the Parkinson's KinetiGraph (PKG) TM system, empowers neurologists and healthcare providers to better manage patients’ symptoms, improving their quality of life. To date more than 25,000 PKG patient reports have been delivered around the world. GKC is headquartered in Melbourne, with offices in London, UK, and Minneapolis and Boston, USA.
Developed by the Florey Institute of Neuroscience & Mental Health’s Professor Malcolm Horne and Dr Rob Griffiths right here in Australia, the PKG TM is worn on the patient’s wrist, so symptoms can be monitored continuously whether they’re at home or out and about.
That data informs clinical decision making, revealing deep insights into patients’ disease status, enabling care teams to tailor specific therapies that can result in life-changing benefits. The device is a ground breaker in tackling Parkinson’s, the second most common neurological disease in Australia.
From lab to market: expanding horizons for our members, and for your industry
HESTA General Manager Unlisted Assets Andrew Major is watching our investment in medical innovations like this yield exciting results for researchers, and strong returns for our members.
“Clearly one of our strengths as a country is our research and our ability to innovate,” Andrew says. “Supporting research that is then commercialised into products or treatments is clearly beneficial for HESTA members and for the community. We’re investing in the pool of research talent, and that’s having positive flow-on effects from a broader societal perspective. It gives our members a greater ability to deliver innovative care.
“From the performance side for members, everything we do is about risk and return. When we’re investing in life sciences at the early stage, some will fail — but some can make many times more from a small initial investment, to become something of substantially greater value for our members.”
And with a raft of emerging technologies set to drive more innovation in digital healthcare, we’re looking forward to partnering with pioneers in your industry for years to come.