Scientists lead delegation to boost life-sciences collaboration with Japan

 The Tokyo skyline

The Tokyo skyline

Imperial scientists joined industry experts and academic colleagues in Tokyo for the largest life-sciences trade mission to Japan in a decade.

The delegation aimed to build on collaborations between the UK and Japan and showcase the UK as open for investment, research, and business.

Imperial researchers and their Japanese colleagues are collaborating, innovating and creating for the good of our economies and societies.

- Professor Jonathan Weber

Dean of the Faculty of Medicine

It was led by MedCity - which launched at Imperial in 201 3, with the Department for International Trade , London & Partners , and the Northern Health Science Alliance.

Business Minister Lord Prior, along with representatives from Imperial, UCL , King’s , and the UK’s leading biotechnology companies, hosted a UK Symposium on Tuesday 10 October, providing insights into academic-industry collaborations, successful university spinouts, digital health in the NHS and Japan-UK research and commercialisation projects.

The delegation also attended , Asia’s biggest biosciences conference, in Yokohama from 11-13 October. Imperial Professors Guido Franzoso (Medicine), Elaine Holmes (Department of Surgery & Cancer), Oscar Ces (Chemistry) and Dr Oliver Windram (Department of Life Sciences) all gave presentations at the event.

Shaping the future

Dr Oscar Ces, Professor of Chemical Biology at Imperial, said: “The UK and Japan’s brilliant scientists are shaping the future. In the past five years alone, Imperial academics have co-authored more than 1,000 research papers with their Japanese peers. This represents a wealth of discovery and opportunity for both nations.”

Professor Tom Welton, Dean of the Faculty of Natural Sciences , said: “Japan and the UK are two of the world’s scientific powerhouses. Our individual scientists have long collaborated on a 1:1 basis. BioJapan provides a fantastic platform to build upon these to initiate exciting new programmes.”

Professor Jonathan Weber, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine , said: “Japan is an indispensable partner for Imperial and for UK health innovation. Imperial researchers and their Japanese colleagues are collaborating, innovating and creating for the good of our economies and societies. BioJapan shows the sheer strength and immense potential of the UK-Japan partnership in this transformational sector.”

Lord Prior of Brampton , Under Secretary of State at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, said: “Japan is one of the UK’s most important science and research partners which is why we are taking the largest ever delegation to the BioJapan conference, reinforcing our commitment to international collaboration to solve some of greatest medical issues of our time.

“We have made the biggest increase to Government funding for research and development since 1979, and through our work with industry partners on the Life Sciences Industrial Strategy, we are ensuring the UK’s expertise in this sector continues to go from strength to strength.”

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