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United Kingdom : UK outlines new investments in plans to harness genetic research

August 5, 2014

Britain has outlined fresh investments in its plans of harnessing genetic research to change the way cancer and rare diseases are diagnosed and treated.

Planning to map 100,000 human genomes by 2017, the Government, has approved genomic sequencing deals with Illumina, the Wellcome Trust and the Medical Research Council.

As the NHS gears up to invite tens of thousands of patients to provide DNA samples under state plans to make it the maiden mainstream health service to provide genomic medicine as part of routine care, the partners will offer key infrastructure and expertise.

British Premier David Cameron said : "I am determined to do all I can to support the health and scientific sector to unlock the power of DNA, turning an important scientific breakthrough into something that will help deliver better tests, better drugs and above all better care for patients."

An investment package of over 300m, the major share of which involves Illumina, will boost the on-going 100,000 Genomes Project.

The San Diego-based biotech will secure 78m for the use of its genomic sequencing services and will, in turn, make an investment of around 162m into the work in England over four years, generating genome sequencing knowledge and employment in a partnership with Genomics England.

CEO of Illumina, Jay Flatley, said the project to create the maiden complete national programme for genomic healthcare is expected to 'push the boundaries of medical science.'

Flatley said : 'This project confirms the UK as a leader in the global race to implement genomic technology and create a lasting legacy for patients, the NHS and the UK economy.'

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Source: TendersInfo (India)

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