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CRUK Reaps $15.7M Donation for the Planned Francis Crick Institute

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Cancer Research UK plans to use a new £10 million ($15.7 million) donation to fund the development of the Francis Crick Institute, a multi-partner research biomedical research center set to open in 2015.

The institute, which is being built in inner London and will be the largest biomedical research institute in Europe, according to Cancer Research UK, will host a range of basic human biology research and interdisciplinary studies involving genomics, systems and cell biology, whole organ studies, and other subjects.

CRUK, which is currently involved in an effort called the Create the Change campaign to raise £100 million for the institute, did not disclose the identity of the donor.

CRUK also said that the same donor has provided an additional £10 million to the University of Southampton to fund the building of an institute that will focus on cancer immunology, which is also scheduled to open in 2015.

"These two donations will transform our ability to move new immune treatments for cancer from the laboratories in the Francis Crick Institute to patients, through the new cancer immunology center in Southampton. Harnessing the power of the immune system is one of the most promising areas of new cancer treatment, and this far-sighted initiative will really make a difference to both our scientific understanding and its practical application in the clinic," CRUK's Chief Clinician Peter Johnson said in a statement

The institute is a consortium of partners, including the government and several of the UK's leading research centers and, including the Medical Research Council; CRUK; the Wellcome Trust; University College London; Imperial College London; and King's College London. These organizations are expected to invest a total of £650 million in the new venture.

When it is completed and fully operational, the Francis Crick Institute will employ a staff of 1,500, including 1,250 scientists, CRUK said.

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