The Centre for Cancer Biology (CCB) has received a significant boost to its cancer research potential with the establishment of a state-of-the-art imaging facility opened today in the heart of Adelaide BioMed City Precinct.

A $2 million grant from the Australian Cancer Research Foundation (ACRF) has enabled the establishment of the ACRF Cancer Discovery Accelerator at the CCB, a joint alliance between SA Pathology and the University of South Australia.

Research Project Leader and Head of the Gene Regulation Section at the CCB, Professor Greg Goodall, said the facility’s opening today would help fuel breakthrough research at the CCB, including the discovery of genes, proteins and regulatory RNAs that promote or suppress cancer.

“Converting these discoveries into actionable targets for drugs requires intimate delineation of the molecular mechanisms within which they operate, in cancer-relevant contexts,” Professor Goodall said.

This new facility will help the CCB find causes and cures for cancer by substantially accelerating the discovery of new therapeutic targets for treating cancers, and understanding the mechanisms that drive cancers to grow and spread throughout the body.

New equipment made possible by this grant includes a ‘Super Resolution’ microscope, which allows structures within cancer cells to be visualised at a resolution 10 times that of conventional optical microscopes. This will enable researchers in SA to investigate abnormalities associated with cancer cells in great detail.

CCB Co-Director, Professor Angel Lopez AO, said the ACRF Cancer Discovery Accelerator will provide access to new technology previously unavailable in South Australia to help visualise the molecular mechanisms underpinning cancer progression and metastasis.

“These new technologies within a single integrated facility will enhance technology uptake and its practical application for the ultimate benefit of the end users – our cancer patients,” Professor Lopez said.

CCB Co-Director, Professor Sharad Kumar AM, said the importance of this new facility for South Australia and the precinct builds on the long-term development of world-class facilities in Adelaide BioMed City, linking with other imaging capabilities such as those located at SAHMRI and the University of Adelaide.

Australian Cancer Research Foundation, Chief Executive Officer, Kerry Strydom, said the team at ACRF are incredibly excited to have backed this innovative cancer research institute.

“The team at the Centre for Cancer Biology are doing critical work to better understand cancer with the end goal of finding more effective solutions for cancer patients. This focus is something ACRF is proud to support and we are looking forward to seeing continued outcomes into the future thanks to the ACRF Cancer Discover Accelerator and the CCB team,” Ms Strydom said.

The Centre for Cancer Biology is one of Australia’s peak cancer focused medical research institutes and houses the largest concentration of cancer research in South Australia. It is supported by SA Pathology and the University of South Australia.