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UK deal to boost research collaborations

The UK's newly launched research collaboration model, involving the life sciences industry, universities and the NHS, has been well received

The UK's Department of Health (DH) has launched the model Industry Collaborative Research Agreement (mICRA), which has won support in the industry.

The mICRA, which was developed by the National Institute for Health Research Office for Clinical Research Infrastructure (NOCRI) and the Medical Research Council (MRC), provides template contracts to allow research studies involving the life sciences industry, universities and the NHS to start more rapidly.

One of the key features of the agreement is a series of options for handling the ownership of any intellectual property rights resulting from the collaboration with a guide to help partners decide which option is best suited to their needs.

Nigel Gaymond, chief executive of the BioIndustry Association (BIA), said: "The introduction of the mICRA will help speed the start of the collaborations between universities, the NHS and the life sciences industry, which are a key part of the development of new treatments. The BIA supports the mICRA and would encourage our members to make full use of it."

The agreement is supported by a comprehensive guidance document which sets out its background and aims and details how the agreement should be used in the development of contracts for specific clinical research collaborations.

24th February 2011

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