Compounds Australia manages a national ‘Open’ compound collection, and numerous ‘Closed’ or proprietary compound collections.

Compounds Australia securely stores and curates sample libraries submitted by Australian based chemists. The facility makes these compounds available at low cost in flexible screening and assay-ready formats to academic and not-for-profit researchers.

The guiding principles of Compounds Australia are to enable new collaborations between chemists and biologists and to add value to the already excellent synthetic, medicinal, organic and natural product chemistry in the Australasian region.


Compounds Australia's Structure Portal was launched in early 2016 and enables researchers to browse or search the ‘Open’ Compound Collections via a web portal. This provides researchers with access to up to date information such as individual chemical properties.

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Open Access Collections

Open Access Collections may be accessed by any researcher within a organisation with a valid membership.

Compounds Australia stores thousands of compounds and natural products submitted by Australian universities and research organisations. These compound collections are available for screening to our access members.

Closed Access Collections

Compounds Australia curates numerous “Closed” compound collections.  These collections are owned exclusively by the depositing organisation.  Access requests of these collections are directly coordinated through the depositing member.

Some of these collections include the Monash Fragment Platform (MFP) and the Walter and Elisa Hall Institute (WEHI) and Children’s Cancer Institute (CCI) lead-like chemical collection. Compounds Australia will soon be home to the Australian Lead ID Consortium library (ALIDC) led by Cancer Therapeutics (CTx).

Unique samples

Samples submitted to Compounds Australia differ from those available in commercial collections and offer the biologist a unique screening set. Compounds Australia is able to perform substructure searches and similarity matching so that focussed subsets can also be supplied, if desired, in addition to the complete diverse set.

Post-screening, Compounds Australia provides contact to sample owners for independent project follow-up and disclosure of structures. Compounds Australia does not take an ownership stake in resulting or background IP.


Late 2012, Compounds Australia acquired a "scaffolds" focused library from commercial vendors, with funding provided by Therapeutic Innovations Australia, through the EIF-Super Science Initiative.

The library was purchased with a clear strategy of providing novelty and lead-like scaffolds or chemotypes with ≤ 30 SAR-meaningful compounds per scaffold. Through several stages of "MedChem eye" filtering and computational analysis, a dedicated group of chemists from the Griffith Institute for Drug Discovery and Queensland Facility of Advanced Bioinformatics (QFAB) identified a broad selection of scaffolds and ultimately selected >30,000 compounds for purchase from two commercial vendors.

The samples have been solubilised and stored in DMSO at 5mM and have been reformatted into a microplate library for ease of providing assay-ready multi-formatted plates.

Compound acquisition


As part of the compound registration process, members are required to generate a structural fingerprint and to calculate the "rule of five" descriptors using the Compounds Australia profiler, an in-house software tool available to members. Using the structural fingerprints, QFAB has developed a method for producing smaller subsets of the Open Collections for cost-effective alternatives to screening the whole collection. Pre-defined diverse library subsets containing 1,000, 2,000 and 5,000 compounds have been designed for the Open Academic collection. This is routinely performed every 6 months following further academic submissions.

With the purchase of the Open Scaffolds library, QFAB have performed a clustering analysis of the whole Open Collection (Academic & Scaffolds) to generate subsets containing 1,000, 2,000, 5,000 and 10,000 compounds.

Alternatively, QFAB is available to perform a fee-for-service analysis of the collection to generate a specific targeted subset.


Compounds Australia recently purchased the Selleck Kinase and Epigenetics collections.  These libraries complement the MicroSource Spectrum FDA collection purchased in 2016.  Collectively these libraries comprise the Open Drug collections and are available to view on the Compounds Australia Structure PoRtal.

The Open Access Drug library will provide researchers with biologically active and structurally diverse compounds:

  • for target validation
  • for assay validation
  • to unlock new targets for known compounds
  • to provide preliminary information for grant applications.

The Open Drug libraries are available to researchers in assay-ready formats only. Assay-ready is volumes <1000nL, and as low as 2.5nL. Compounds Australia can readily “spot” these collections in bespoke assay-ready formats in a single point, multi-point and cherrypicked formats. The collections are solubilised in 100% DMSO 5mM solutions and stored in low temperature and low humidity environments.

The Open Drug collections are available to researchers via access agreements (and included in deposit agreements) and are charged on a per plate basis.


NatureBank is a unique drug discovery platform based on natural product extracts and fractions that have been derived from Australian plants, fungi and marine invertebrates.

These samples have been processed into two libraries (an 18,000 natural product extract library and a 90,000 natural product fraction library), which are ready for high-throughput screening against any disease. NatureBank also holds more than 30,000 archived biota samples.

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