The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, today announced a £150 million investment in the UK’s clinical research infrastructure. The Chancellor announced the funding, while visiting the University of Exeter, which is home to one of 23 key projects that will benefit from this funding at centres located around the country.
The Treasury has worked with the Department of Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) to allocate £150m of funding to the Medical Research Council’s (MRC) Clinical Research Capital Initiative. This money adds to the £80m funding also pledged to the initiative by the MRC, devolved authorities, universities, and charities, bringing the total capital to over £230 million.
The investment presents a unique opportunity to enhance the UK’s clinical research capabilities and will focus particularly on developing ground breaking technologies and experimental medicines. Examples of the projects benefiting from the investment include:
- Institute of Cancer Research hoping to revolutionise radiation treatment by targeting tumours more accurately
- team made up from seven of our top universities who are working together to advance the next frontier on molecular biology, single-cell genomics
- teams from the University of Leeds and York who are pioneering the SABRE imaging method to increase the signal of an MRI image up to 100,000 times
The work of these and the other 23 projects will help in identifying the causes of conditions and diseases such as cancer and dementia, and dramatically speeding up diagnosis and treatment.
The Rt. Hon. George Osborne MP said:
The UK is already a world leader in science and research, which is why at the Budget, I protected science spending. Today we go a step further by announcing £150 million of new investment in clinical research infrastructure. The funding will go to 23 truly innovative projects from across the UK today that represent the best of British ingenuity and scientific exploration. The government, charities, universities and industry will be working together to advance our knowledge in combatting the biggest medical challenges of our time.
Life Sciences Minister George Freeman said:
We want to make the UK the best place in the world for life sciences. Building on our existing research infrastructure this investment will speed up the innovation of experimental medicine, strengthen partnerships with industry and charities and boost our economic growth in this exciting sector.
Professor Sir John Savill, Chief Executive of the Medical Research Council, said:
The government entrusted £150 million of funding to this initiative. With generous contributions from Arthritis Research UK, the British Heart Foundation and other partners, we have been able to invest over £230 million in a collaboration that will catalyse innovation and advance our knowledge in completely new areas of research.