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Doping for UK's biomedicine
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Doping for UK's biomedicine

03.08.2012 - The UK government has pledged to invest additional €49m (£39m) in the country's life science research.

The Biomedical Catalyst Fund commited €12,6m (£10m) to 14 universities and 18 small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to explore the market potential of early-stage ideas. Each of the universities received up to £750k, while each company received up to £150k to propel their projects. These are the first investments for the three-year, €227m (£180m) fund. It is part of the Strategy for Life Science unveiled by UK’s Prime Minister David Cameron December last year to foster the domestic life science industry. The grants will fund about 150 pilot projects, allowing academic researchers to begin the process of turning a bright idea into a viable proposition. Universities have control over allocating the funding internally, allowing them to respond rapidly to new opportunities and have the flexibility to pursue the most promising translational research opportunities.

In an effort to establish four e-health centres of excellence in London, Manchester, Dundee and Swansea, UK’s Medical Research Council has teamed up with a consortium of ten public and charity research funders. The centres will focus on conditions including cancer, diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease. The researchers working at these centers will link information in NHS health records with other forms of research and routinely-collected data to improve patient care and public health.

Only days ago, Cameron unveiled plans to converse the Olympic drug testing laboratories located in Harlow into a phenome research centre after the Games are complete. The concept of the phenome encapsulates all of an individual’s traits, which are the outcome of a continuous interplay between their genes and the environment. It will be funded by €12,6m (£10m) investments over five years by both the Medical Research Council and the Department of Health’s National Institute for Health Research. Two companies who make scientific instruments - Bruker, and Waters Corporation – will invest additional €25,2m (£20m). Imperial College and King’s College London will be academic partners in the project.

FundingEU

11.07.2014 Among the seven newly launched Joint Technology Initiatives (JTI) of Horizon2020 are two with deep roots in biotech: IMI is going into its second round while the newly established Bio-based Industries partnership invests in bioeconomy.

Stock marketNetherlandsUKBelgium

10.07.2014 Not one but two biopharma companies are seeking entry into the stock market: After Abzena raised €25m in an IPO earlier this week, Argen-x has followed suit and sold shares worth €40m.

M&AUKIreland

08.07.2014 Abbvie is determined to bring home British rare disease specialist Shire in a merger worth £30.1bn (€37.9bn). So far, Shire has rejected all offers from the US company.

M&ASwitzerland

04.07.2014 Genentech, a member of Swiss Roche Group, is set to acquire US-biotech Seragon Pharmaceuticals Inc. With the move, Genentech will obtain the rights to investigational breast cancer treatments.

M&AFranceGermany

03.07.2014 Nicox S.A. is stretching beyond the European market: The French eye health specialist is set to acquire Aciex Therapeutics Inc., a US-based pharma company with several ophthalmic therapeutics nearing market maturity.

FinanceBelgium

01.07.2014 Belgian antibody specialist Ablynx has raised €41.7m through a private placement of new shares and plans on boosting their range of nanobodies in development.

BioeconomyBelgiumUK

30.06.2014 Building on a £1.2m financing round, Celtic Renewables partners with a Belgian pilot plant to bring its bio-fuel made from whisky production residue to an industrial scale.

ConventionEUUK

25.06.2014 Sun, celebrities and a scandal - the world’s largest biotech convention is getting off to an explosive start in San Diego, California.

InvestmentGermanyNetherlands

24.06.2014 Bayer Healthcare is getting back into gene therapy with a US$252m deal aimed at the development of a haemophilia A treatment.

InvestmentNetherlands

20.06.2014 Tomtom founder Pieter Geelen invests in Dutch biotech Ocello, the company behind a 3D mapping technology used for predicting drug behaviour in patients.

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No liability assumed, Date: 13.07.2014