ICON announces collaboration with Trust to develop new translational medicine unit
ICON plc, a global provider of outsourced development services
to the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device industries,
today announced that it has signed a collaborative agreement with
the Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to
develop a purpose built translational medicine facility.
The new facility will form part of an ambitious expansion plan
being undertaken by the Trust to develop the existing Manchester
Royal Infirmary (MRI) campus. This re-development plan has already
delivered Britain's largest children's hospital, which opened
earlier this month. The remainder of the campus development is due
for completion by April 2012 and will house an ICON-designed
state-of-the-art Translational Medicine Unit.
In the interim period ICON will transfer its current clinical
pharmacology services into dedicated clinical research facilities
on the MRI site. Commenting on the announcement, Dr Thomas Frey,
President, ICON Development Solutions, said "We are delighted to be
collaborating with the Trust and the Manchester Academic Health
Science Centre to continue to develop the region as an
international centre of excellence in translational medicine.
Moving to a hospital-based setting also meets the needs of our
customers who are increasingly looking to run their first-in-human
studies in hospital environments."
Mike Deegan, Chief Executive of the Trust added: "Our aim is to
build upon our investments in facilities and high calibre clinical
academic staff to consolidate our reputation as a leading
international research hospital. This exciting new collaboration
with ICON is a major step for the Trust and will accelerate the
translation of research discoveries into new medicines . We look
forward to working with the highly regarded ICON team"
Researchers at the National Institute for Health Research
Manchester Biomedical Research Centre (BRC), which is based at the
Trust, will also work with the ICON team. BRC Director Prof Phil
Baker said: "Our focus is on translating new discoveries made in
the lab into direct benefits for patients. Access to a major
clinical trials facility on site is the final part of the equation,
and we are excited by the opportunity of working with ICON
colleagues. This will give our researchers a direct pathway to take
their initial biomedical research work and develop it into proven
treatments and technologies ready for use with patients."
The Trust is a member of the Manchester Academic Health Science
Centre (MAHSC) which is one of only five centres designated by the
Department of Health as a centre of excellence in applying health
research and education into healthcare. Through the collaboration
ICON will share expertise and has access to the facilities of the
other NHS members and The University of Manchester. Commenting on
the collaboration, Linda Magee, Chief Operating Officer, MAHSC
said: "ICON is one of MAHSC's selected industry partners and we are
delighted they are developing their facilities with one of the
MAHSC members. As well as ICON's complementary capabilities in
clinical trials, we greatly value their commitment and contribution
to education and training for clinical academics."
Dr Allison Jeynes-Ellis, Medical and Innovation Director at the
Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), said:
"This is an example of the type of collaboration between industry,
academia and the NHS that the ABPI is seeking to encourage and
which we believe will help drive forward translational medicine,
building on the strength of the pharmaceutical, science and
clinical base in the UK."