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UK Government Initiates Competition to Map Rare Cancer Genes

By BiotechDaily International staff writers
Posted on 17 Dec 2013
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A GBP 10 million competition has been established to help biotech companies develop advanced technology to map and analyze genes.

Companies that win the competition will be funded to develop high-tech products to help identify and treat inherited diseases and cancer. Concepts could include new computer code or hardware, or enhancement of existing software and technology. 

The competition will run together with plans to map the DNA code of up to 100,000 UK National Health Service (NHS) patients with cancer and rare diseases by 2017. The products developed as part of the competition will play a part in reaching this goal. Public Health England (London, UK) is also leading work to use whole genome sequencing to treat infectious diseases.

UK Heath Minister Lord Howe said, “Our plans to map 100,000 genomes over the next five years will lead to truly ground-breaking discoveries about how diseases work and how we can treat them more effectively. This competition helps harness the creativity and ingenuity of businesses to help us reach our target. Our investment in pioneering scientific research is good news for patients, for the research sector and for the economy, creating jobs and growth in our world-beating life sciences industry, and helping the UK compete in the global race.”

The competition is part of the Government’s commitment to making the United Kingdom one of the best places to start and grow a business. Application forms and additional details about this competition can be found online (please see Related Links below). The deadline for entries is February 5, 2014. Winning proposals will be announced in March 2014.

The UK Department of Health (DH; London, UK) is funding the competition through the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI). 

Related Links:

Public Health England
UK Department of Health
Technology Strategy Board


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