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Second life sciences sector deal promises £1.3bn

The government and 10 companies are to jointly invest £1.3 billion in the UK life sciences, and to support a large study to speed up disease diagnosis.

As part of the second life sciences sector deal, the global pharmaceutical company UCB is to spend £1bn on R&D over the next five years, the business department said in an announcement on 5 December. Of this sum, between £150 million and £200m will go towards building a new R&D centre. UCB’s chief executive Jean-Christophe Tellier says the facility will enable his company to strengthen collaboration with universities, biotechnology companies and medical research charities in the UK.

The deal also includes a £30m investment by the Swiss pharmaceutical company Roche, of which £20m will go towards a precision cancer research partnership with the Christie NHS Foundation Trust in Manchester. The partnership will bring together genomic technology and data to speed up rare cancer trials, according to the business department. 

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