HSCI-industry collaboration

Several new industry partners have joined the Harvard Stem Cell Institute in supporting an exciting range of programs. These collaborations highlight the breadth of opportunities available for industry to participate in the mission of the HSCI while simultaneously benefiting their own goals in research & development (R&D) and community outreach.

HSCI’s 2007/08 Seminar Series is sponsored by a $50,000 gift from BD Biosciences (a division of BD, Becton Dickinson and Company) . The annual Seminar Series brings outside speakers from around the world to the HSCI community and emphasizes the importance of awareness of the broad stem cell field, collaboration across physical boundaries, and the sharing of information and resources. Speakers include both international and HSCI affiliated scientists.

GlaxoSmithKline has partnered with HSCI to develop a robust clinician-scientist training program. Headquartered in the UK, with R&D operations in the United States, Europe and China, GSK holds an estimated seven percent of the world’s pharmaceutical market. Building on the success of HSCI’s MD-PhD program, the $2,000,000 gift from GSK will be used to encourage and support investigators completing joint degree programs and will also provide funding for stem cell research projects under the direction of clinician-scientists.

Martin Madaus, President and CEO of Millipore Corporation recently announced a $500,000 research gift to HSCI made through the Millipore Foundation. Millipore’s gift will support HSCI’s seed grant program, which provides early funding for innovative projects in any field of stem cell research.

Other corporate and industry partners have come forward this past year in support of specific disease-targeted research projects at the HSCI. In February 2008, as part of Massachusetts’ commitment to furthering advances in life sciences that may lead to new medical applications, the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center (MLSC) unveiled its first grant initiatives. The Cooperative Research Grants program specifically recognizes the importance of developing industry-sponsored research at academic institutions in Massachusetts by requiring proposals to include a local industry partner prepared to commit a 1:1 match to the MLSC’s commitment of up to $250,000 per year for up to 3 years.

Bolstered by the early enthusiasm for collaboration from partners such as BD Biosciences, GSK, Millipore and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, HSCI is optimistic about the future of industry involvement as a viable, innovative, and mutually beneficial means to support high impact research. For more information, visit www.bdbiosciences.com, www.gsk.com, www.millipore.com, and www.masslifesciences.com.