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Government research agency the EPSRC and the Wellcome Trust are looking to fund several big ticket research projects to kickstart biomedical research into some of the most challenging healthcare problems.

The Engineering Physical Sciences Research Council and the Wellcome Trust will fund three or four projects, each of which can be up to £10 million and last over 7 years. Unusually, the “Innovative Engineering for Health” initiative aims to provide the resources and flexibility to both conduct the basic research and see that research applied into clinical or public health practise.

The EPSRC wants to sponsor research that develops technology to tackle rare diseases, helps those with mental health issues or facilitates care for babies and infants with growth and development problems.

Priority will be given to projects that address “intractable problems in medicine or public health using exciting engineering concepts” and use “novel approaches in engineering”.

David Delpy, Chief Executive of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) said, “This initiative provides a unique opportunity for researchers to take basic science and engineering right through to adoption into practice.  It will support innovative thinking and bring together the best researchers in the world in the medical, engineering and physical sciences to devise solutions to healthcare challenges.”

Biomedical engineering continues to be a rapidly growing field, with advances in areas such as fibre optical surgical techniques, robotic prostheses and automated genetic sequencing leading recently to many new devices and drugs

The new scheme is open to global applications, and particularly encourages collaboration between the UK and the best international groups. The deadline for submissions is December 10th.

Further information is available at the Welcome Trust website.




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