Plans to make UK North West a leader in precision medicine

22 September 2015

A consortium of health partners in Liverpool has launched a report outlining an action plan intended to make the city a leader in precision (or personalised) medicine.

The Liverpool Precision inMedicine (PRiME) report is the work of Price Warerhouse Coopers on behalf of Liverpool Health Partners (LHP), along with the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and the North West Coast Academic Health Science Network (AHSN). Their aim is for the Liverpool City Region, part of the UK Government's Health North initiative, to become the fastest place in the country for research and commercialisation of precision medicine.

The same organisations are also part of a larger partners forming the Genomics England designated North West Coast NHS Genomic Medicine Centre (GMC). Programme Lead Angela Douglas commented: we want to build on the strong foundation of the GMC, create genomic pathways enabling an NHS transformation legacy that will accelerate uptake with advanced genomic medicine practice, integrated into the NHS, delivering better outcomes for our patients”.

The PRiME report sets out key priorities including engagement with industry; strategic communication; biomedical research; and the FUTURE initiative to research gene variants that affect drug responses.

LHP Executive Director Professor Sir Munir Pirmohamed said that the PRiME report was a "coherent, deliverable action plan until 2020 that identifies LCR's assets in precision medicine” whilst Dr Liz Mear, Chief Executive of the North West Coast AHSN added that precision medicine was “the key to predicting and preventing disease and targeting treatments so they are bespoke to individual patients”.

The Health North initiative is the life sciences element of a broader government agenda to stimulate economic growth among leading cities in the North of England, rebalancing the economy away from the South East, dubbed the Northern Powerhouse. Health North has received £20 million funding and Life Sciences Minister George Freeman  is responsible for helping it to build on existing health and science expertise.

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