Pfizer to Collaborate with Prestigious UK Universities in Rare Disease Research

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Last week Pfizer and the Global Medical Excellence Cluster (GMEC) announced a five year agreement to research and develop new and innovative treatments for rare diseases.

The GMEC -made up of Cambridge University, Imperial College London, King’s College London, Queen Mary University, University College London and Oxford University- announced that they will work with the American pharma giant for the next five years on a join drug discovery program.

The program has in fact already started, with Senior Pfizer scientists, such as Dr. Kevin Lee, Chief Scientific Officer of Pfizer’s Rare Disease Research Unit, and Dr Jim Hagan, CEO of GMEC, are visiting the GMEC Universities to launch the initiative.

Around 80% of rare disorders are thought to be genetic, and the partnership hopes to tackle this majority thanks to increasing knowledge of the human genome.

“We are looking forward to working with Pfizer on this project. It underlines the UK’s strengths in biomedical research and creates an important vehicle for academic and industrial scientists to work together with the goal to translate fundamental research into benefit for patients.”

“Collaboration between industry and the scientific community is vital to the goal of driving the development of a new generation of medicines to improve the lives of patients with rare diseases,” said Mikael Dolsten, M.D., Ph.D., President, Worldwide Research and Development, Pfizer Inc. “We are excited about establishing this new relationship with GMEC and look forward to working closely with these highly regarded UK institutions to potentially develop new treatments for debilitating genetic disorders.”

Visit the GMEC here.

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