Researchers and clinicians from Manchester Academic Health Science Center (MAHSC), a partnership involving the University of Manchester and six NHS Trusts, have launched a major partnership with global pharmaceutical company Roche. The new relationship will boost clinical research studies, which could lead to the development of new drugs and diagnostic tools and give patients in the region greater access to new treatments in development.
The alliance also includes colleagues from the Greater Manchester Academic Health Science Network (GM AHSN), which is focused on ensuring new medicines, diagnostic tools and health technology become widely available more quickly, and the NIHR Greater Manchester Comprehensive Local Research Network (CLRN), which supports researchers and companies to identify and recruit patients into clinical studies quickly and efficiently.
The partnership aims to seek opportunities for the development of biomarker research within MAHSC’s six domains (cancer, cardiovascular, human development, inflammation and repair, mental health and population health); support the training of the next generation of MAHSC researchers and clinicians in clinical and translational medicine; and improve access to new medicines available and encouraging wider participation of patients in clinical trials.
Closer clinical links between MAHSC and Roche will enable the partners to explore opportunities for combination therapies and increase understanding of the potential benefits of high impact medicines, technologies, devices and diagnostics in the healthcare system. Investigators leading clinical trials across MAHSC will gain early access to new drugs, and MAHSC research studies may, in turn, identify new uses for existing Roche products.
The collaboration will enable patients to have faster and greater access to new medicines, and give the medical community more hands-on research experience, plus closer links to the latest research studies.
Dr. Linda Magee, Business Development director at MAHSC, said, "This exciting new collaboration with Roche encapsulates the significant benefits an Academic Health Science Centre can offer industry. Access to the skills of our clinicians and researchers, and a population of 3.6 million, in partnership with the GM AHSN and CLRN, will provide Roche with the opportunity to develop and test new diagnostic tools and drugs in a streamlined and effective way. The benefits for MAHSC also are considerable. Working with a major global player like Roche gives our teams access to innovative new therapies for our patients and supports the development of the next generation of translational medicine experts and clinical investigators.”
Raj Jain, managing director of GM AHSN, said, "The AHSN is a collaborative network of local NHS organizations, higher education institutes and industry. We are a membership organization bringing together 30 NHS providers and commissioners and four universities including the MAHSC partners and working alongside the NIHR research network. As a system integrator, we are an organization that links different parts of the health and social care ecosystem and this partnership with Roche will help us jointly to improve health outcomes and spread innovation at scale and pace."