GSK and Francis Crick Institute Partner on New Scientific Discoveries

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This collaboration is said to be the first established between the Crick and a pharmaceutical company.

The Francis Crick Institute, the United Kingdom’s newest biomedical research facility, and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) have partnered to explore new avenues of drug discovery and medical research across a range of diseases. This collaboration is said to be the first established between the Crick and a pharmaceutical company.

Scientists from each organization will work together at the Crick’s center of biomedical research in London and GSK’s global R&D hub in Stevenage. The collaborative research is expected to lead to better understanding of human diseases and ultimately, increase the success rate of discovering new medicines and better treatments for patients.

GSK and the Crick will contribute resources, including laboratory space and the scientific staff to the collaboration. GSK will also provide research tools to the collaboration, including access to its non-development compound library, key antibodies, reagents and technologies, which will be used to address key questions in disease biology.

David Roblin, chief operating officer & director of scientific translation at the Francis Crick Institute, said in a press release, “This truly represents a landmark agreement in open science. In the Crick, we aim to have industrial scientists embedded in our laboratories and fully integrated with our existing scientific groups. Together the scientists will accelerate breakthroughs in the understanding of human health and disease.”


GSK’s president of pharmaceuticals R&D, Patrick Vallance, said in the same press release, “As a company with deep research roots in the UK, we’re enormously proud of this country’s vibrant biosciences community and the cutting-edge biomedical research that takes place here. That’s why we continue to invest a quarter of our R&D spend in the UK and have collaborations in place with some of the country’s top research institutions, which rank among the best in the world.” Vallance commented that GSK is excited to be working alongside the Crick, and believes that combining the strengths of both sides puts them in a good place to make significant advances in medical research and drug discovery.

Projects exploring diseases such as HIV, malaria, and cancer are expected to start in 2015. This will build up to a steady state of 10–15 projects in 2016. Findings from this open-innovation collaboration will be shared in peer-reviewed journals.

Source: GSK