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Oxford to lead work towards more personalised care for patients

Oxford is today named as a centre for excellence leading the drive to tailor more treatments to the needs of individual patients.

A Precision Medicine Catapult centre will be established in Oxford bringing together business and research to develop new products and services.

This project will be led by the Oxford Academic Health Science Network which will connect partners across the NHS, universities, research and industry with a particular focus on harnessing big data and developing new diagnostic tests. The aim is to accelerate the adoption of innovation in the NHS at pace and scale.

The announcement that Oxford will be one of six regional centres of excellence came from the Precision Medicine Catapult, funded by Innovate UK.

Precision medicine is the use of diagnostic tests and data-based insights to understand a patient’s disease more precisely leading to the selection of treatments which produce more predictable, safer and cost-effective outcomes.

Prof Gary Ford, Chief Executive of the Oxford Academic Health Science Network (AHSN), said: “Oxford has world- leading capability in precision medicine and a long history of developing new targeted therapies for patients.

“Designation as a Precision Medicine Catapult centre will speed up translation of scientific discovery into targeted treatments for patients and more rapid adoption into clinical services across our region and the wider NHS.”

Professor Keith Channon, Director of Research & Development at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Director of the National Institute for Health Research Oxford Biomedical Research Centre, said: “We are delighted that Oxford has been designated a Precision Medicine Catapult centre of excellence.

“This reflects the exciting innovations flowing from our NIHR Biomedical Research Centre and Academic Health Science Centre that will help us to develop and to introduce more personalised treatments for patients across the Oxford Academic Health Science Network region and beyond.”

Professor June Girvin, Pro Vice Chancellor and Dean of the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences at Oxford Brookes University, said: “Brookes is delighted to hear that Oxford will be a centre of excellence for precision medicine.

“As one of the four partners in the Oxford Academic Health Science Centre, we see this as another example of how health care research, education and practice in Oxford is absolutely at the forefront of innovation.”

  • Sir John Bell, Regius Professor of Medicine at the University of Oxford, outlines the opportunities and challenges for Oxford in the field of precision medicine in this video
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