Israel and UK partner on Regenerative Medicine

On 21-22 November, 60 British experts in the field of regenerative medicine met with around 150 Israeli counterparts to launch a groundbreaking program for promoting collaboration between the two countries. Many millions of people suffering from major physical trauma; cardiovascular, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases; severe burns; birth defects; and numerous other disorders and conditions will eventually benefit from this first-ever UK-Israel Regenerative Medicine Conference at Ben-Gurion University. It was estimated that the potential patient populations for stem cell-based therapies in the US alone include more than 100 million people and that regenerative medicine therapies will result in direct health care cost savings in the range of $250 billion per year. Regenerative medicine could also be applied towards improving health in developing countries. The conference is the inaugural event of the BIRAX – Regenerative Medicine Initiative, a five-year program that hopes to raise £10 million and support 15 high-quality joint UK-Israel research projects that will be selected by experts and approved by the UK-Israel Life Sciences Council. British Ambassador to Israel Matthew Gould said: “Britain and Israel are natural partners in regenerative medicine. The UK is a world leader in science – we have four of the world’s top 10 universities – and Israel is a scientific powerhouse. We can achieve much more together than we can apart. My hope is that this conference leads to a surge of collaborations between British and Israeli scientists, with the UK-Israel Regenerative Medicine program stimulating groundbreaking research projects.”

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