Rare Daily Staff

The University of Oxford and University Hospitals in Cleveland said it has entered into a multi-year affiliation with the Harrington Discovery Institute to establish a global center for rare diseases.

The Oxford-Harrington Rare Disease Centre will bring together the capabilities, resources and expertise of both institutions to deliver new treatments for rare diseases, for which therapeutic options are lacking. It will be headquartered both in Oxford, United Kingdom and in Cleveland within the Harrington Discovery Institute. The center will be leveraged by researchers worldwide and raise awareness for rare diseases.
“Advancing breakthroughs in rare diseases will require bold, new approaches that can overcome scientific challenges and create new medicines,” said Jonathan Stamler, president of the Harrington Discovery Institute. “This affiliation represents a commitment to patients first and a tremendous opportunity to improve the health and outcomes of those living with a rare disease.”

In this partnership, the University of Oxford and Harrington Discovery Institute commit to addressing unmet need in rare diseases. Through their combined resources, the new center will set the science and innovation agenda to support breakthroughs across the United Kingdom and the United States with the greatest chance for clinical impact.

The University of Oxford is a world-renowned academic institution with more than 250 principal investigator scientists working on over 350 rare diseases. The Oxford Rare Disease Initiative, established in 2012, is a collaboration between the University of Oxford and the Oxford University Hospitals Trust. The Oxford University Hospitals Trust provides the opportunity to combine pre-clinical and clinical expertise in areas such as neurology, inflammation and immunology, hematology, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases and has created an extensive rare disease network.

Harrington Discovery Institute, part of The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development, has supported more than 100 drugs-in-the-making across disease areas and academic institutions, with a concentration in diseases where unmet need is greatest. The Harrington Project was established to advance scientific discoveries over the ‘Valley of Death’–the stage in the drug development process when a new discovery is seen as promising but is insufficiently validated to attract the funding necessary for clinical trials. Harrington Discovery Institute advances these promising discoveries towards the clinic by aligning, through mission and structure, scientific and drug discovery expertise into a new model for drug development.

Our partnership with Harrington Discovery Institute recognizes the combined experience needed in world-class science and drug development if we are to change the rare disease landscape in a meaningful way,” said John Bell, Regius Professor of Medicine at Oxford. “Oxford is committed to doing so through this unique, open model supporting the most impactful innovation throughout the U.K.”

Photo: Jonathan Stamler, president of the Harrington Discovery Institute.

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