Pfizer Joins Milner Therapeutics Consortium

30.01.2017 -

US-based Pfizer is the latest major drugmaker to join Milner Therapeutics Consortium, a global therapeutic alliance that is essentially a “match-making” service between pharmaceutical companies and researchers at the UK’s Cambridge University.

Pfizer’s vice president for external R&D Innovation, Ron Newbold, will join the Milner Innovation Board alongside representatives from Astex, AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Shionogi, MedImmune, University of Cambridge, Babraham Institute and Sanger Institute.

Established in 2015, the Consortium brings together the drug development capabilities of the pharmaceutical groups with the know-how of academic institutions in Cambridge. It will give researchers access to novel therapeutic agents (including small molecules and antibodies) across the entire portfolios of drugs being developed by each of the member companies in order to investigate the mechanism, efficacy and potential of new substances.

The Milner Therapeutics Institute said it has specifically modelled the Consortium to help facilitate the speedy exchange of resources and information between partners through pre-signed agreements. Each industry partner has put aside funds for collaborative research projects between the Consortium members, which will be open to any therapeutic area and are expected to lead to joint publications.

Tony Kouzarides, found and director of the Milner Therapeutics Institute, said it is focussed on working with Pfizer to advance disease understanding and make a difference to therapies in the clinic.

New research laboratories for the Institute are currently being built on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus and will be completed in the spring of 2018. A research facility is also being established, which is anticipated to house robotics for customized drug screening as well as gene editing and bioinformatics support.

The Consortium said it is seeking academic and industrial partners to work in all therapeutic areas.