In a first, Australia's Chemgenex files NDA for cancer drug

In what is being hailed as a first for an Australian biotech company, Chemgenex has filed for FDA approval of a new cancer therapy.

Chemgenex CEO Greg Collier told reporters that it took less than five years and $40 million to get its chronic myeloid leukemia drug omacetaxine ready for an NDA. And the developer has done it without having a big pharma company come along to partner on the program. Down under, the analysts see the NDA as another sign that Australia's life sciences industry is coming of age.

 "Increasing investor interest in biotechs, demonstrated by the takeover bid for Peplin last week, coupled with Chemgenex's announcement shows that there is a real biotechnology industry here that can deliver commercial outcomes," ABN AMRO Morgans analyst Scott Power said.

- read the report from the Herald Sun