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New Disease Compounds Research Library Launched by the Medical Research Council

The Medical Research Council (MRC) has teamed up with six pharmaceutical companies to create a disease compounds library for academic researchers around the world.

The library is the latest product of the MRC’s Industry Asset Sharing Initiative, which comprises of 47 deprioritised compounds contributed by AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Janssen, Pfizer, Takeda and UCB.

Both pre-clinical and clinical compounds are featured in the MRC library, which includes molecules developed for conditions such as ADHD, cancer, diabetes and narcolepsy and is the largest resource of its kind.

MRC is also offering up to £5m in funding for research studies that use the compounds to investigate the mechanics of diseases, with the aim of developing of new medicines.
Commenting on the research library partnership, MRC’s director of translational research and industry Dr Chris Watkins said: “The MRC is a world-leader in forging links between industry and universities and academics.

“Academic partners benefit from working hand-in-hand with industry counterparts, large and small, to join in this innovative MRC collaboration designed to speed up the translation of basic science into real health benefits for patients.”

This latest initiative expands on earlier resources-sharing collaboration between the MRC and AZ, launched in 2014. Located at AZ’s research and development site in Cambridge, the Centre for Lead Discovery provides researchers with access to in-house compound library and compound screening capabilities.

UCB has also previously joined forces with the MRC, working with the Council to provide UK scientists with access to the company’s technology platform to aid the discovery of new monoclonal antibodies.

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