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Bioscience Across the North to Benefit from New United Life Sciences Collaboration

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Bionow, the BioIndustry Association (BIA), BioPartner and One Nucleus (ON) have announced the formation of United Life Sciences, a strategic partnership representing over 1000 life science and healthcare members across the UK and internationally. The aim of the partnership is to work together on a range of matters that directly benefit members including Bionow’s members in the north of the UK and the wider UK sector.

Today the partnership also publishes the Life Sciences Manifesto 2015 - 2020 which is being launched at the BIA’s UK Bioscience Forum in London. Led by the BIA, the four organizations have worked closely together on the Manifesto to pinpoint the key issues for the sector and make policy recommendations to government. Its three core messages to policy makers are:

• retain focus on strategically important technologies such as regenerative medicine and synthetic biology, which hold great potential to benefit the UK economy;
• ensure a supportive tax and finance environment through continuing policies such as the Biomedical Catalyst, R&D Tax Credits and the Patent Box; and
• support new flexible routes to licensing, evaluation, uptake and reimbursement of cutting edge medicines and treatments to facilitate swift patient access. A centrally funded and reimbursed Early Access to Medicines Scheme and full utilization of the European Medicine Agency’s Adaptive Licensing pilot will be required to achieve this aim.

Going forward United Life Sciences will:
• Hold a series of UK road shows to enable early stage companies access capital, understand the evolving policy landscape and grow their businesses;
• Promote and provide discounts for members on each other’s events; and
• Work together to provide a combined approach at large international events.

The group has been working closely together informally for two years, and has already hosted several joint events both in the UK and overseas. The partnership will also be seeking new ways to collaborate with others in the sector.

Announcing the new partnership, Harriet Fear, Chief Executive Officer of One Nucleus, said: “Collaboration and partnership based on mutual respect and trust are the key hallmarks of successful organizations in bioscience and United Life Sciences works in this way too - it’s in my DNA to support the UK after 21 years of serving my country as a diplomat. Collaboration, as so many of our members are aware, is vitally important”.

Dr Geoff Davison, Chief Executive Officer of Bionow, said: “By working together we avoid duplication of effort, recognizing that all our members are stretched in terms of their time and resources, plus it recognizes the strengths and expertise of each of the four organizations. The partnership is totally focused upon and driven by the needs of the sector and representing over 1000 businesses means the group has international critical mass and clout.”

Steve Bates, Chief Executive Officer of the BIA, said: “Through this collaboration, all four organizations are fully committed to providing a united front and critically, one voice, to the government via the lobbying and advocacy work that the BIA undertakes for the sector.”

Lin Bateson, Executive Director of Biopartner UK, said: “Linking up to provide a combined approach will help to focus international attention on UK bioscience expertise to encourage growth, inward investment, and much-needed funding.”