Page URL:

Scotland: £20 million personalised medicine research centre gets go-ahead

29 April 2013
Appeared in BioNews 702

The University of Glasgow will receive £20 million to develop a research centre dedicated to personalised medicine.

The Stratified Medicine Scotland Innovation Centre (SMS-IC) will also involve research groups from other Scottish universities, NHS Scotland, and industry collaborators. Launched by Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond at the South Glasgow Hospitals Campus, the centre is scheduled to open in September 2015.

Scientists at the SMS-IC will examine patients' genetic makeup and study how that relates to responses to different treatments. Ultimately, the researchers hope to use this knowledge so that treatment can be better tailored to each patient.

One goal of personalised medicine is to reduce inefficiencies in healthcare. For example, genetic analysis might show that a normally first-line medicine would have little chance of success for an individual patient, in which case they could be started on a course of treatment that would be more likely to work.

Use of this information would also carry economic benefit. A statement from the University of Glasgow claims that 'of the £595 billion global spend for pharmaceuticals in 2011, an estimated £393 billion was used for therapies which did not produce the desired effect'.

Professor Anna Dominiczak, Vice-Principal and Regius Professor of Medicine at the University of Glasgow adds: '£124 billion is spent in the UK on healthcare each year, with medicines accounting for £12 billion of the total. Even a small increase in efficiency created through better targeting of treatment would save the UK tens of millions of pounds each year'.

Work will initially focus on chronic diseases like cancer and rheumatoid arthritis. The Scottish Funding Council will provide £8 million of the total £20 million funding over five years.

The SMS-IC is one of three Innovation Centres announced by Salmond. Together, the centres will receive £28 million from the Scottish Funding Council and could create 2,000 jobs over the next five years.

The First Minister called them 'an exciting new collaboration between all parts of public life, with Scottish industry, higher education institutions, multinationals, our small- and medium-sized enterprises and our public sector partners working together to provide solutions to demand-led problems facing industry in Scotland by supporting innovation for future growth'.

Life Technologies' Ion Proton to Power Stratified Medicine Scotland Innovation Centre
Life Technologies (press release) |  23 April 2013
New £20m research centre for Glasgow
Evening Times |  24 April 2013
New £30m Scots innovation centres to create 2,000 jobs
BBC News |  23 April 2013
University of Glasgow receives funding for world-leading stratified medicine Innovation Centre
University of Glasgow (press release) |  23 April 2013
7 March 2016 - by Antony Starza-Allen 
Genome sequencing in Scotland has received a major cash boost, following a £6 million investment into the Scottish Genomes Partnership (SGP), which will begin working with Genomics England on the 100,000 Genomes Project...
7 October 2013 - by Rhys Baker 
The Prime Minister, David Cameron, has announced a new partnership between Genomics England and Cancer Research UK as part of a Government bid to make the UK the first country in the world to sequence 100,000 genomes within five years....
17 September 2012 - by James Brooks 
Genetic tests that could greatly improve the effectiveness of drug therapy for a wide variety of conditions are being underused or ignored, a leading expert says...
13 August 2012 - by Matthew Young 
The anti-doping laboratories built for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games will be developed into the world's first Phenome Research Centre; the term 'phenome' referring to the overall expression of a person's characteristics and traits as determined by the interaction of genetics and environment...
12 December 2011 - by Mehmet Fidanboylu 
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the US has demonstrated its intent to make personalised medicine a reality by outlining plans for projects set to cost almost half a billion US dollars...
28 November 2011 - by Dr Rosie Morley 
An initiative has been launched to collect genetic data from NHS cancer patients in the hope of developing new, personalised treatments....
to add a Comment.

By posting a comment you agree to abide by the BioNews terms and conditions

Syndicate this story - click here to enquire about using this story.