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Dutch committee backs TI Pharma

Review investigates if government-supported partnership organisation is achieving its aim of facilitating development of priority medicines

Top Institute (TI) Pharma, which was established in 2006 to enable public-private collaborations to develop pharmaceutical research in the Netherlands, was given government funding for a period of four years, with every euro invested matched by the science sector and the private sector.

In the Midterm Review (MTR) of TI Pharma, an independent committee chaired by Cees Veerman has concluded that TI Pharma is well on its way to achieving the objectives that were determined at the time of its establishment. The institute addresses issues with marked social relevance, attracts international investments and has brought forth a group of quality researchers. As a result, the committee has unanimously recommended that TI Pharma should continue in its present form.

Kees van Lede, one of the members of the MTR committee, presented the report to Ab Klink, Minister of Health, Welfare and Sport (VWS).

Van Lede commented: "As TI Pharma creates actual value, it constitutes a sensible investment - one that furthermore offers a high degree of leverage. The institute attracts many international investments, as the recent commitment of €53m made by private parties illustrates. In part thanks to TI Pharma, the Netherlands can compete with superstructures like Cambridge in the UK, the Bay Area in the US and Singapore."

TI Pharma has set up a research infrastructure over the past two years whereby universities, institutes, pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical firms can collaborate to develop medicines.

Ton Rijnders, vice president discovery MSD Oss and chairman of TI Pharma's executive board, stated: "The report is a formal confirmation of the quality and the added value of TI Pharma. Furthermore, it is a good thing that the committee has an eye for the lengthy period of time required to develop medicines and consequently affirms that the institute should be continued."

TI Pharma's research portfolio is based on the disease areas specified in the World Health Organisation (WHO) report, Priority Medicines.

27th January 2010

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