Go-ahead given for Tay Cities biomedical project

The project, which is led by the University of Dundee, has been officially signed off by the Tay Cities Region Joint Committee.

The Biomedical Cluster project has received initial funding of £25 million from the Scottish government as part of the Tay Cities Deal.

The three main elements of the Biomedical Cluster project are:

the creation of a Tay Cities Regional Innovation Hub, which is intended to drive company formation, the provision of new treatments and technologies, and jobs for the region;

the development of a Clinical R&D Innovation Environment, which will be incorporated within the new multidisciplinary Tayside Innovation MedTech Ecosystem (Time);

an expansion of the Thiel Cadaver Facility at the University’s Centre for Anatomy & Human Identification (CAHID).

The Tay Cities Deal is a partnership between the UK and Scottish governments along with public and private organisations across Angus, Dundee, Fife and Perth & Kinross. Together they will invest up to £700 million in projects promoting sustainable and inclusive prosperity for the region.

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Professor Sir Mike Ferguson, regius professor of life sciences and co-lead of the Growing the Tay Cities Biomedical Cluster project, said, “The Tay Cities Deal will make a profound difference to the local area, but the impact of this particular project will also be felt across the globe as companies and collaborations formed in Dundee influence the future of healthcare by developing new drugs, treatments and medical innovations.

“The Covid-19 pandemic has created massive disruption everywhere and demonstrated more than ever the importance of science for public benefit. We have one of the highest-performing and largest life sciences research portfolios in the UK. The Tay Cities Deal will enable us to take our discoveries and innovations to the marketplace and, crucially, to anchor new companies and quality jobs for our citizens in this community.

“The time is right for us to convert our pre-eminence in life sciences research into tangible socio-economic benefit for the region, as well as health benefits for the world.”

Construction of the Innovation Hub will begin later this year and is scheduled to open in mid-2023.

The funding will also enable the transformation of Wilson House in Dundee Medipark near Ninewells Hospital into an environment where students, staff, clinicians, designers, engineers and data scientists can develop disruptive technologies for the healthcare industry.

Construction work to repurpose the building will begin this year, with projects moving into the facility from late autumn 2022.

Investment will be made to increase the capacity of CAHID facilities to meet growth in demand from industry for device testing and development. It is planned that this work will also be completed next year.

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