Translational research is a hot topic. Earlier this year, Francis Collins announced the NIH would be setting up its own Translational Research center. Last week, Sanofi's Elias Zerhouni acknowledged translational research was a lot harder than it looked and that Sanofi would be opening things up to collaborate more in external sectors - particularly with academia and hospitals.
Today, GSK announced a funding deal with Ontario's MaRS Innovation group to accelerate translational research in the province and help close Canada's "innovation gap". The deal is meant to provide cash and collaborators to researchers working on projects with a lot of in-licensing potential or that could serve as the basis of a biotech start-up.
"Collaborations such as these -- where we share knowledge, expertise and resources -- provide a highly effective way of progressing and commercializing cutting edge research," said Paul Lucas, CEO of GSK of Canada.
As noted by Fierce Biotech, GSK is just the latest Big Pharma company -- including others like Pfizer and Sanofi -- embrace external collaborations to boost R&D productivity and output as they've been disatisfied with the recent (last 10 yrs) returns on internal programs.
Posted by Bruce Lehr May 31st 2011.