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Home > Press > Mayo Clinic and University of Illinois create research alliance

Abstract:
Mayo Clinic-University of Illinois strategic alliance for technology-based health care

Mayo Clinic and University of Illinois create research alliance

Rochester, MN | Posted on June 22nd, 2010

Mayo Clinic and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign are announcing a strategic alliance designed to promote a broad spectrum of collaborative research, development of new technologies and clinical tools, and design and implementation of novel education programs. Both parties recently signed an agreement establishing the formal relationship.

This Mayo Clinic-Illinois strategic alliance provides a framework for broad cooperation in individualized medicine by integrating efforts in three areas: 1) basic, translational and clinical research; 2) bioengineering, especially for point-of-care diagnostics; and 3) development of tools and methods in computational biology and medicine.

"We are utterly delighted to be working with Illinois. We have worked diligently over the past eighteen months to get to this point," says Franklyn Prendergast, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine. "What now emerges is a plan that builds on complementary capabilities of the two institutions in science and medicine honed and strengthened by the similarities in our midwestern cultures and values."

"The University of Illinois has well-recognized capabilities in basic and computational sciences, genomics, bioengineering and technology generally," said Lawrence Schook, the U. of I. Gutgsell Professor of Animal Sciences and the director of the division of biomedical sciences. "When combined with Mayo's outstanding capabilities across the spectrum of biomedical research and clinical practice, this yields an alliance with enormous potential to transform medicine."

Initial areas of scientific focus for the Alliance will include projects in genomics, the microbiome, bioinformatics and other computational science including the use of petascale computing, imaging, nanotechnology and tissue engineering. Several joint scientific projects are already ongoing and several more are being planned. The number of collaborative projects is expected to grow even faster in response to the announcement of a request for applications for a planning grant for joint programs.

Planning is underway for bilateral educational programs in bioengineering, computational medicine nanotechnology, genomics innovation and entrepreneurism. The Alliance intends eventually also to co-sponsor a variety of symposia and seminars, the first of which was held earlier this spring.

The Alliance expects to be sustained long term by funding from federal grants and philanthropy and from a variety of entrepreneurial projects involving commercialization of collaboratively generated intellectual property and agreements with corporate partners.

A steering committee is being formed to oversee the Alliance. All projects will require joint collaboration.

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About Mayo Clinic
For more than 100 years, millions of people from all walks of life have found answers at Mayo Clinic. These patients tell us they leave Mayo Clinic with peace of mind knowing they received care from the world's leading experts. Mayo Clinic is the first and largest integrated, not-for-profit group practice in the world. At Mayo Clinic, a team of specialists is assembled to take the time to listen, understand and care for patients' health issues and concerns. These teams draw from more than 3,700 physicians and scientists and 50,100 allied staff that work at Mayo Clinic's campuses in Minnesota, Florida, and Arizona; and community-based providers in more than 70 locations in southern Minnesota, western Wisconsin and northeast Iowa. These locations treat more than half a million people each year. To best serve patients, Mayo Clinic works with many insurance companies, does not require a physician referral in most cases and is an in-network provider for millions of people. To obtain the latest news releases from Mayo Clinic, go to www.mayoclinic.org/news. For information about research and education, visit www.mayo.edu. MayoClinic.com (www.mayoclinic.com) is available as a resource for your general health information.

About the University of Illinois
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has long ranked among the nation's most distinguished teaching and research institutions. Its diverse, world-class programs reflect the mission of a land-grant university. The largest public university in Illinois, the U. of I. campus was chartered by the state in 1867 as the Illinois Industrial University and opened its doors to students in 1868.

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Robert Nellis

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