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UK Launches $16M Small Business Initiative to Advance Genomic Analysis Tools

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The UK government and Genomics England are collaborating to award £10 million ($16.4 million) to small businesses seeking to develop genomic analysis technologies, the Department of Health said yesterday.

The competitive funding call, which will be funded by the Department of Health and managed by Genomics England, will award up to £2 million to fund phase 1 Small Business Research Initiative projects and the remainder will be used to support phase II projects.

For phase I efforts, the partners plan to provide grants of up to £200,000 for six-month projects, and only those that complete this phase will be eligible for phase II funding, which is generally used to develop and evaluate prototypes or demonstration units.

Genomics England is a government-owned company that launched this summer with the aim of running the 100K Genomes Project, a large-scale, five-year effort to sequence and analyze 100,000 patients, or infections in patients.

The Department of Health said this funding call will run alongside the 100K Genomes Project, and the technologies the small businesses advance will help support the project partners in reaching their goals.

The competition opened yesterday.