This month, the IR Department team worked on a media campaign for our client, Kazia Therapeutics, to mark World Brain Tumour Day.
Kazia is a biotechnology company developing innovative drugs to treat cancer. Its lead drug, GDC-0084 is being developed to treat glioblastoma multiforme, the most common and most aggressive form of primary brain cancer in adults, as well as Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG) - a rare but very aggressive form of childhood brain cancer.
For the campaign, we decided to highlight awareness of DIPG – a cancer that most commonly affects children between four and 11 years old and has a survival rate of less than 1%.
We enlisted the help of Professor Matt Dun from the University of Newcastle and the Hunter Medical Research Institute (HMRI). Professor Dun is one of Australia’s leading researchers in DIPG and Kazia’s GDC-0084 is one of the drugs he is using in his efforts in a bid to improve the survival rate of this devastating disease.
Matt’s quest is also a very personal one. He began his research into DIPG after his daughter – Josie, 3 – was sadly diagnosed with the disease last year.
We organised interviews with Matt in leading broadcast and print media, which resulted in widespread coverage.
In his interview on Channel’s 7 Sunrise program last week, Matt spoke candidly about Josie, her prognosis and how he hopes his research will have a clinical benefit for her.
Watch the interview here: http://bit.ly/2J9caU
He was also interviewed by Jane Hansen in the Daily Telegraph and the story was widely syndicated across other News Corp papers. Of his experiments with GDC-0084, he notes that “we have tested 11 DIPG samples in the lab and they are all sensitive to the drug.”
Read the story here: http://bit.ly/2Xy92XK
Professor Dun was also featured on Channel 9 online where it mentions that he saw potential in GDC-0084 because the drug “targets one of the drivers of his daughter's tumour".
Read the story here: http://bit.ly/2X3egcI
It was also great to see that following the interview on Sunrise, a $100,000 donation was made to Matt’s charity, www.RunDIPG.org on Friday by Sunrise sports presenter Mark Beretta and the Tour De Cure cancer charity.
Watch here: http://bit.ly/2Jdpkix
We were very humbled to work on this campaign to highlight awareness of what is a truly awful disease and thank Matt and the media team at HMRI for their time and generosity in helping to make this happen.
“This campaign required a great deal of sensitivity: on the one hand, articulating the story to journalists in a compelling way, and on the other, respecting the devastating experience of patients and families affected by this disease,” said Kazia CEO, Dr James Garner.
“The IR Department team did an excellent job in working with a diverse group of stakeholders to achieve a very high level of media engagement and were able to adapt quickly to emerging opportunities as different media outlets considered the story. We were delighted to see a significantly raised awareness for DIPG, and a considerable financial donation to the researchers involved.”
We encourage all our readers to support Matt’s efforts through donating to his charity: www.RunDIPG.org