Pfizer Launches Global Regenerative Medicine Research Unit
News Nov 17, 2008
Pfizer has announces the launch of a new research unit known as Pfizer Regenerative Medicine. This independent research unit will build on recent scientific progress in understanding the biology of stem cells and the opportunity that provides, to discover and develop a new generation of regenerative medicines for major medical needs.
Pfizer says that the new unit will announce several significant scientific collaborations in the coming weeks that will place the company at the forefront of an emerging area of science that could one day bring hope and benefit to millions of patients worldwide.
Scientists at Pfizer Regenerative Medicine will explore the use of stem cells to develop future treatments that may prevent disability, repair failing organs and treat degenerative diseases. The ultimate goal will be to deliver new medicinal products that can pave the way for the use of cells as therapeutics.
“Pfizer Regenerative Medicine represents a great opportunity to focus world-class research in a field that holds considerable promise for biomedical science and for the treatment of many debilitating conditions such as diabetes and neurodegenerative disorders.” said Rod MacKenzie, PhD, head of Worldwide Research at Pfizer.
Corey Goodman, PhD, President of Pfizer’s Biotherapeutics and Bioinnovation Center, said, “The formation of this new unit represents another key step forward in Pfizer’s commitment to be at the forefront of new approaches in biotherapeutics and bioinnovation and to expand our research efforts and expertise into emerging areas of biomedical science, like regenerative medicine, that have great potential for human health.”
The unit will be led by Chief Scientific Officer, Ruth McKernan, PhD, who said “I’m very excited to lead this new research unit. While there is still a lot to understand about how stem cells can be used therapeutically, we believe it is one of the most promising areas of scientific research.”
Pfizer Regenerative Medicine will operate as one of Pfizer’s new small, independent research units to help it foster a biotechnology culture and environment. A key component to the success of the units will be collaboration with leading academic, biotech and pharmaceutical partners around the world. Details of Pfizer’s scientific collaborations will be announced in the coming weeks.
Pfizer Regenerative Medicine will be co-located in the biotech hubs of Cambridge, UK and Cambridge, Massachusetts in the United States. It is expected to expand to employ around 70 researchers.
The spatial and temporal dynamics of proteins or organelles plays a crucial role in controlling various cellular processes and in development of diseases. However, acute control of activity at distinct locations within a cell cannot be achieved. A new chemo-optogenetic method enables tunable, reversible, and rapid control of activity at multiple subcellular compartments within a living cell.