UNSW has been awarded almost seven million dollars in funding for cancer research from the NSW government. UNSW was awarded more than any other institution in the state.

Professor Philip Hogg, who is the Director of UNSW's Cancer Research Centre, has been awarded $3.75 million for his work on anti-mitochondrial cancer drugs.

Those drugs will be tested in Australia on patients with bowel cancer in the coming years. This trial has been made possible by the new Lowy Cancer Research Centre.

Clinical trials for the earlier version of this drug have been carried out in the UK because there has not been the funding needed in Australia.

Once developed, the drugs could target and kill the cells that supply the cancer with the blood it needs to survive.

"This would make cancer a manageable condition in the long-term, rather than being a 'cure'," said Professor Hogg.

"It would mean that patients would receive ongoing treatment, in the same way that diabetes is managed. It would remain a serious - but manageable - condition."

Professor Levon Khachigian, from the Centre for Vascular Research (CVR) at UNSW has been awarded $2.96 million for novel gene-targeted therapies for Basel Cell Carcinoma.

Professor Khachigian is working towards identifying cancer causing DNA in the treatment of skin cancers.

"If such a trial were successful, it would be a significant development given the high rates of skin cancer and because the main treatment currently is surgical excision, which can cause scarring," said Professor Khachigian.

"Conventional anti-inflammatory drugs are associated with a whole host of side-effects. Our therapeutic may potentially avert some of these."

UNSW conjoint Professor Pamela Russell, who is based at the Oncology Research Centre at the Prince of Wales Hospital, was given a $240,000 infrastructure grant.

The government announced a total of $20 million in cancer research grants, ahead of the budget. The money was allocated in the previous financial year.