9. august 2016

Research powerhouse within cancer will become part of the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences

Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences

The path from basic research to development of new medicines and treatment methods within cancer, for example, will become shorter when Biotech Research and Innovation Centre (BRIC) becomes part of the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences (SUND) at the University of Copenhagen.

Today, both SUND and BRIC are international leaders within research in, among others, metabolic-related diseases, neurological diseases, infectious diseases and cancer. Over the past decade, BRIC has built up a very strong research environment, particularly in the field of basic cancer research.

Bringing SUND and BRIC together will also bring two fields of excellence closer together. The background for the new organisation is a common goal of strengthening the so-called translational disease research. While basic research provides insight into the disease-causing mechanisms, translational research translates the results into the development of new medicines and treatment methods in the clinical area.

"It's a huge strength in the strategic work within health sciences that we have now joined forces and can collaborate on research and education within, for example, cancer," says Ulla Wewer, Dean of the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences.

The closer collaboration will impact innovation and the collaboration with the pharmaceutical industry, so that basic research can quickly create value for patients suffering from serious diseases. It will also boost an already strong international educational environment at SUND and benefit the students at the faculty, especially in the field of medicine, odontology, human biology and molecular biomedicine.

"At BRIC, our ambition is to create research infrastructures and research centres that focus on both basic and clinical research. All experience shows that interdisciplinary integration stimulates both basic and clinical research and increases the likelihood that the research findings will benefit the patients. By becoming part of SUND, we've come one step closer to that goal", says Professor Kristian Helin, Director of BRIC.

Both Ulla Wewer and Kristian Helin are looking forward to working together on providing the best possible conditions for innovation and collaboration with the pharmaceutical industry, so that basic scientific advances can be translated into commercially promising projects, which can be patented and used to start up new businesses.

BRIC was established in 2003 as an independent centre at the University of Copenhagen and has, in a very impressive manner, developed into a research powerhouse, which – by focusing on the most recent molecular biology and cellular mechanisms – has created groundbreaking results within disease research. The centre currently has 250 employees divided into 23 research groups.

In future, BRIC will be a centre at SUND reporting to Ulla Wewer. BRIC's current Board will be replaced by a Scientific Advisory Board.

Dean Ulla Wewer via Head of Communications, Anéh Christina Hajdu, mobile: +45 21 22 26 92 or mail: aneh.hajdu@sund.ku.dk

CEO Kristian Helin, mobile: +45 28 75 56 68 or mail: Kristian.Helin@bric.ku.dk