Press release

Inaugural meeting of the Life Sciences Council at Downing Street

Yesterday Health and Social Care Secretary Jeremy Hunt and Business Secretary Greg Clark chaired the inaugural meeting of the Life Sciences Council at Downing Street.

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A Downing Street spokesperson said:

The Life Sciences Council, a partnership between government and industry, met for the first time yesterday to discuss the future of the life sciences sector.

It was chaired jointly by the Business and Health and Social Care Secretaries, who outlined the importance of the life sciences sector to the modern industrial strategy, the NHS and patients.

At the meeting, pharmaceutical company Eisai announced it would make a further substantial investment in dementia research in the UK, in support of the government’s ambition to be a global hub for dementia research.

All agreed substantial progress had been made on implementing the Life Sciences Sector Deal. The importance of data to both industry and patients was a key topic of discussion.

Upcoming negotiations on the price paid by the NHS for medicines was also raised. Both government and industry confirmed advance talks had been productive.

Brexit, the challenges and opportunities it presents along with priorities for the sector was discussed. Industry leaders were clear on the government’s commitment to achieving a good outcome for the sector, both for medicines and the wider sector.

The UK has a proud history of innovation, and both government and industry were united today in confirming their drive to deliver excellence.

Eisai said:

The substantial investment announced today by Eisai’s CEO, Dr Haruo Naito, for extending its investment for dementia research in the UK is a reflection of the high standard of UK science, its universities and the support of the government’s Life Science Industrial Strategy. It also extends the close cooperation between the UK and Japan in finding new treatments for this terrible disease which affects so many worldwide.

Published 17 May 2018