GE Healthcare Life Sciences links up with Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst (SBC)


Joins neurodegenerative disease challenge and expands commitment to open innovation in healthcare

GE Healthcare Life Sciences is expanding its relationship with Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst (SBC), the UK’s first open innovation bioscience campus, by supporting SBC’s open innovation challenge in neurodegenerative disease.

The link-up builds on GE's presence at SBC, where the company opened a Technology Laboratory in October 2013, and broadens its commitment to open innovation in healthcare.

Millions of people worldwide are affected by neurodegenerative disorders such as epilepsy, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease, and SBC’s open innovation challenge was established to help address this growing global problem.

The challenge, which aims to stimulate interaction between academics, industry and charities, was launched last May by SBC, Manchester Integrating Medicine and Innovative Technology (MIMIT) and six leading Academic Health Science Centre Technology Transfer Organisations (Cambridge Enterprise, Imperial Innovations, King’s Business, UCL Business, University of Manchester Intellectual Property, and Isis Innovations (Oxford University)).

Proposals from academic teams for research in two fields – biomarkers for diagnosis and patient stratification, and inflammation/neurodegeneration – will be reviewed by a panel of industry, public sector and research charity experts including sponsors such as GE Healthcare Life Sciences. Selected projects will be announced early next year.

We strongly believe that collaboration between industry and academia is the way to drive innovation

Joining the challenge supports GE Healthcare’s MIND (Make an Impact on Neurological Disorders) initiative, which is dedicated to improving the prediction, detection and diagnosis of neurological disorders.

Ger Brophy, Chief Technology Officer of GE Healthcare Life Sciences, said: 'We are excited to be joining the SBC Open Innovation Challenge. We strongly believe that collaboration between industry and academia is the way to drive innovation, and this SBC initiative supports our goal of finding new, better ways for physicians to detect and diagnose these most difficult of diseases.'

Martino Picardo, CEO of Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst, added: 'We are delighted to welcome GE Healthcare Life Sciences to our neurodegenerative diseases challenge. Broadening the scope of organisations associated with this initiative increases the range of expertise available to the academic researchers and everyone else involved.'

Sign up for your free email newsletter

Between 2010 and 2020, GE Healthcare plans to invest more than US$500m in research into neurological disorders. The investment crosses all lines of GE Healthcare's global business and focuses on developing new neurology diagnostic solutions, educating consumers, and expanding research already in progress. Target areas include diagnosing post-traumatic stress disorder, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, stroke, concussion and traumatic brain injury.