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Munro Partners: supporting autoimmune disease research

This article featured in Illuminate Newsletter Autumn ‘24
Key Researchers
Photo of Hamish King
Laboratory Head
WEHI’s Dr Hamish King (second from right) with Munro Partners’ Taylor Bree-Casey, Bianca Mercury, Jeremy Gibson and Lechelle Hooper.

Munro Partners is an award-winning funds management firm that invests in global growth equities. A key to their success stems from an understanding of how and why the world is changing – and managing their investment portfolios to suit.

Underpinning their investment philosophy, which focuses on identifying and investing in companies that have the potential to grow more quickly and sustainably than the overall market, Munro Partners identifies structural changes happening in the world around us.

For the past five years, they have been contributing to an innovative partnership with Hearts and Minds Investments Limited (HM1), a unique investment company that also philanthropically supports Australian medical research. Munro Partners provide expert investment recommendations pro bono to HM1 which, in turn, enables HM1 to donate to medical research on behalf of the Munro Foundation.

Supporting a new approach to autoimmune diseases

In 2023, the Munro Foundation Advisory Committee chose to support WEHI’s Dr Hamish King and his team’s research into the genetic causes of autoimmune diseases.

While 10% of Australians live with one (or more) autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, coeliac disease or type 1 diabetes, there are still no cures and very limited treatment options.

To address this, Dr King’s lab is using cutting-edge technology to decipher the DNA-encoded causes of disease to find new and more effective treatments, repurpose existing drug therapies and create better diagnostic tools.

“In the past, researchers have needed to focus on a single gene or a single disease. With this generous support from Munro Partners, we can now take a more unbiased approach and understand how thousands of genes impact many different immune diseases” he says.

Investing in the future

With HM1’s focus on medical research and Munro Partners philosophy of investing in structural changes, the Munro Foundation Advisory Committee was determined to partner with an organisation that was leading the way in medical discoveries and innovative science on a global stage.

“We have been so impressed and inspired by the people at WEHI, and we are excited to be able to contribute to their important work,” the committee said.

“The Munro Foundation is thrilled to be backing such a worthy team and project, in Dr King’s autoimmune research. The discoveries that come from this type of research have the potential to improve the quality of life for many Australians.”

HM1 CEO Paul Rayson says: “HM1 supports the best minds (and hearts!) in both investing and medical research. The latest example of this is our partnership with Munro Partners as a fund manager for HM1, and now their support for Dr King’s research at WEHI.

“We are excited that valuable funding is going to WEHI research that can make meaningful progress in this area.”

Header image: WEHI’s Dr Hamish King (second from right) with Munro Partners’ Taylor Bree-Casey, Bianca Mercury, Jeremy Gibson and Lechelle Hooper.

First published on 11 March 2024
This article featured in Illuminate Newsletter Autumn ‘24
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