Manufacturing news briefs – stories you might have missed

FIAL offers clustering grants

The Food and Agribusiness Growth Centre (FIAL), is offering matched funding of $150,000 to eligible clusters of small companies in the food and agribusiness sector through its Cluster Grant Program 2021. The funding helps businesses, government and researchers unite to tackle challenges in regions and/or cities. By working together for the common good, stakeholders in the cluster can take advantage of market opportunities either domestically or overseas. New and existing Clusters may apply and applications should focus on strategic position, vision, and growth potential. More information here.

Gekko gains ISO certification for ventilator

Ballarat’s Gekko Medical has achieved ISO 13485:2016 certification for the design and manufacture of electro-mechanical, pneumatically driven respiratory devices. Gekko’s successful certification will open opportunities for distribution of its GeVentor ventilator (pictured) locally and internationally, while also providing alternate potential pathways to increase revenue. The accreditation was conducted by BSI. Gekko Medical, a new division of a mining equipment firm, was one of a number of Australian companies to develop their own ventilators during the Covid-19 pandemic.

FYI Resources and Alcoa negotiate high purity alumina project

FYI Resources and Alcoa have entered into detailed negotiations on the terms of a joint venture development of a high purity alumina (HPA) project in Western Australia. FYI plans a kaolin mine at Cadoux, WA and a processing plant at Kwinana south of Perth. During a 90 day period the two companies will undertake due diligence to establish the commercial and technical feasibility of the project. High purity alumina is used in lithium-ion battery separators, and in synthetic sapphire to manufacture substrates for LED lights, semiconductor wafers used in the electronics industry, and scratch-resistant sapphire glass used for wristwatches, optical windows and smartphones.

Veyonda gains FDA tick to treat sarcoma cancers

The US Food and Drug Administration has granted investigational new drug (IND) approval for biotechnology company Noxopharm’s Veyonda drug for the treatment of sarcoma cancers. Noxopharm has now appointed a contract research organisation to oversee a study. Sarcomas have limited treatment options with few responding to chemotherapy. Noxopharm aims to prove that Veyonda, which contains the experimental drug idronoxil, improves survival rates when administered along with traditional chemotherapy treatments such as doxorubicin.

Magic mushrooms trialled for treating PTSD

Drug development company Halucenex has contracted test laboratory Nucro-Technics to test the stability and shelf life of Psilocybin, the active ingredient found in magic mushrooms. Formulations of the drug will be used in a phase two clinical trial of what is seen as a potential treatment of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Australian-listed cannabis product company Creso Pharma has targeted Halucenex for take-over.

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