This summer GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and HSCI entered into a five-year, $25 million-plus collaborative agreement to build a unique alliance in stem cell science to hasten the development of treatments and cures for a range of diseases.
GSK’s investment, one of the largest by a pharmaceutical company in stem cell science, will support innovative research at the university and at least four Harvard-affiliated hospitals in six disease areas – neurological, cardiac, cancer, diabetes, musculoskeletal, and obesity. In addition, GSK will fund an annual grant in HSCI’s seed grant program, which supports early stage innovative research.
“This is an exciting, extremely significant moment in the history of HSCI,” said Brock Reeve, HSCI’s Executive Director. “This kind of collaborative alliance with GlaxoSmithKline, one of the world’s leading research-based pharmaceutical and healthcare companies, will allow the Harvard Stem Cell Institute to ultimately fulfill its promise of advancing stem cell science to benefit patients. This infusion of research support builds upon the generosity of our donors which continues to be vitally important for our ongoing success.”
The collaboration will integrate HSCI’s worldclass stem cell expertise with GSK’s pharmaceutical capabilities to drive advances in drug discovery research. This will also include, for example, a staff exchange program where HSCI and GSK researchers will spend up to several months in each other’s laboratories. The collaboration will be overseen by a joint steering committee made up of HSCI and GSK scientists and managers.
“GSK believes stem cell science has great potential to aid the discovery of new medicines by improving the screening, identification, and development of new compounds. We have carefully chosen the Boston biomedical community to collaborate with on this important venture. It has the highest concentration of leading stem cell scientists, and the Harvard Stem Cell Institute is the epicenter of that community,” said Patrick Vallance, Head of Drug Discovery at GSK.