Uppsala BIO is a life science pathfinder. In close collaboration between industry, academia, society and healthcare, Uppsala BIO aims to develop life science from the Uppsala region. Madeleine Neil, Communication Manager at Uppsala BIO, explains that “one of the key roles for Uppsala BIO is to build bridges between the industry and academia, initially helping research results to eventually become strong, commercial products”.
Uppsala BIO is a programme initially operating over ten years. The project has been instigated by the industry, authorities and academia in order to develop the commercial life science cluster, ensuring that Uppsala’s stronghold in this field is maintained.
The life science industry comprises more than 200 companies representing a broad base of knowledge in Uppsala; from biotechnological tools to diagnostics and pharmaceuticals. Today, around 20 per cent of Uppsala’s work opportunities are within the life science field.
The BIO-X programme
Research and innovation considered to strengthen the commercial life science cluster, may be granted support in the BIO-X research programme. Financial support is combined with valuable support in product development and perhaps most importantly early contacts with a prospective market. The common goal is to present a commercially viable proof-of-concept or prototype. At Uppsala BIO-X projects are supported with up to 1.5 million SEK per year for a maximum of two years, together with a specially designed package of advice for the projects.
Swedish innovations at the frontline
Sweden has a long and successful history of bringing innovations leading to improved health to the global market. A history that also has created over 40 000 jobs in the life science companies.
“To maintain our competitive advantage, Sweden must take care of the innovative environments developed around our universities and university hospital”, Madeleine Neil says.
“Developing an idea from the clinics or from research results, only into a prototype that can be presented to commercial partners is a very long and risky road”, she continues. “The long-term return on society’s investments in supporting this journey is high, and Uppsala is one successful example of how this can be made”.