Merck partners with the AGITG

Professor Tim Price is presented with a cheque by Mr Drew Young, Managing Director Merck Biopharma Australia and New Zealand

The AGITG in partnership with Merck are pleased to announce two exciting opportunities for AGITG members

“With generous untied financial support from Merck, two significant opportunities are available for our membership through the AGITG Clinical Research Fellowship in GI Cancer and the Kristian Anderson Award.  These opportunities, provided by Merck, demonstrate the level of commitment and strength of the collaborative relationship that exists between our two organisations, now and into the future.” Professor Tim Price, AGITG Chair

Merck-AGITG Clinical Research Fellowship in GI Cancer

Merck has provided a $150,000 grant to the AGITG to be awarded over two years to support two 12 month Fellowships.

This initial 12 month Fellowship of $75,000 will provide an opportunity for an AGITG member to learn from experts in GI cancer at The Royal Marsden Hospital in London in 2018.  The Fellowship will contribute to efforts to develop further collaboration between the AGITG and leading research institutes in the United Kingdom.

“The overall objective of the Research Fellowship is to increase collaboration between the UK and Australia. Our collaborative efforts will be enhanced by this opportunity for a senior Medical Oncology trainee to work at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London. The Fellow will further their clinical research training and exposure to GI cancer research while working in this dedicated cancer institution with opportunities to develop additional contacts and links with major cancer units around the UK and in Europe.

“Merck’s generous support will enable the Fellow to not only be immersed in a UK cancer care unit but will also potentially allow for AGITG clinical trial research to be further developed in the UK. Furthermore the links that will develop by working within the UK system and Europe will also be of great value both for the individual and the AGITG in the future, enhancing future clinical research collaboration.”

Applications will be considered from Advanced Medical Oncology Trainees registered with Royal Australasian College of Physicians and who either are eligible for Fellowship or within 12 months of RACP qualification.

Candidates will be subject to peer review with the successful applicant notified by early July at the latest and formally announced by the AGITG at its Annual Scientific Meeting from 4-6 October 2017 in Cairns.

Candidates will be assessed on personal suitability based on their CV and reasons for applying.

A further $75,000 will be available next year for an additional Fellowship year in 2019.

How to apply

Submissions close at 5:00PM AEST on 16 June 2017.
Click here for application form and submit to

Merck-AGITG Kristian Anderson Award 

Merck has also provided funding to support a clinician undertaking a higher degree (MD, PhD) to research an aspect of personalised medicine in the area of colorectal cancer. The Merck-AGITG Kristian Anderson Award will provide one year’s funding at an equivalent level to the NHMRC support for a higher degree ($36,700). This would be the first year of the planned three year project and is aimed at enabling clinicians to be more competitive for NHMRC or other funding agency support in subsequent years. The successful candidate will be responsible for securing funds to support subsequent years.

Kristian Anderson

Kristian Anderson (pictured above) was 34 years old when he was diagnosed with cancer in his bowel and liver in 2009. In 2010, he grabbed international headlines after a video he made for his wife went viral. After his life was prolonged by cetuximab, a drug used to treat advanced colon cancer, Kristian used his new found profile to successfully lobby the federal government to subsidise it to extend its availability. He created a legacy as the man who helped secure federal funding for this drug.

How to apply

Submissions close at 5:00PM AEST on 16 June 2017.
Click here for application form and submit to

Supported by untied grants from Merck

Managing Director, Merck Biopharma, Australia and New Zealand, Mr Drew Young said, “Merck is very proud to be supporting this important initiative which encourages Australian research and knowledge in the specialist area of gastrointestinal cancer.

 “Unfortunately, Australia has one of the highest rates of colorectal cancer in the world and we all need to do more to address this devastating disease. Merck supplies specialised medicines for the treatment of several cancers and has a firm commitment to working with research organisations, clinicians and patients to achieve better outcomes in oncology. This new Fellowship grant is another example of our contribution.”


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