Award recognition for Australian companies

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Melbourne-based PolyNovo (ASX:PNV) has been named Company of the Year’ while Perth medical device company, OncoRes Medical, has been named 'Emerging Company of the Year 'at the 2019 AusBiotech and Johnson & Johnson Innovation Industry Excellence Awards.

Announced at last week's AusBiotech 2019 national conference, the awards are designed to recognise innovative companies and individuals in Australia’s biotechnology, medical technology and healthcare sectors.

PolyNovo was recognised for the commercialisation of its NovoSorb BTM, which is a bio-resorbable dermal scaffold used in the regeneration of lost tissue through surgical excision, infections, trauma or burns.

CEO Paul Brennan said, ”We are honoured and humbled to win such a prestigious award. However, this is as much an award for CSIRO technology, the translational support of Professor John Greenwood at the Royal Adelaide Hospital, our chief scientist Dr Tim Moore and more recently the support of Dr Marcus Wagstaff of Royal Adelaide Hospital and all the surgeons who now champion the product. Bringing this product to the world is a team effort by all our staff in Australia, US and the UK.”

“On behalf of our staff and shareholders we thank AusBiotech and Johnson & Johnson Innovation for the award, but we know this is the beginning of our journey and the best is yet to come," said Chairman David Williams.

OncoRes Medical, led by Dr Kath Giles, is a medical technology company that was founded in late 2016.

Based on technology from the University of Western Australia, the Harry Perkins Institute and a leading WA breast cancer surgeon, OncoRes Medical is developing a hand-held, real-time device to monitor the margin of tumours during breast conservation surgery.

“We’re thrilled to receive this recognition at an exciting time for the company,” said Kath Giles, OncoRes CEO and managing director. “In the diagnostic accuracy studies we have completed so far the results have been incredibly positive - with 95 percent accuracy in detecting cancerous tissue across a sample of 70 patients. Compared to similar studies and technologies, these are amazing results.”

The probe will help surgeons delineate cancerous tissue from healthy tissue during surgery, with the aim of cutting down the amount of follow-up surgery required by women with breast cancer – which currently occurs in 30 per cent of cases.

AusBiotech’s Chief Executive Officer, Lorraine Chiroiu, said, “The extraordinary achievements that these individuals and companies have contributed to the health of Australians, and to the growth of the sector is invaluable. The Awards act as a celebration of the innovation excellence happening across the country, and demonstrate what can be achieved when leadership, passion, technical expertise, and business acumen unite.”