October 12, 2016

Jackson Lab expanding into China with university collaboration

Courtesy / Jackson Laboratory
Courtesy / Jackson Laboratory
Jackson Laboratory President and CEO Edison Liu. The lab announced that it would be expanding into China with a collaborative project with Wenzhou Medical University in Wenzhou, China, on Tuesday.

A goal several years in the making is finally being realized for the Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, as the biomedical lab announced that it will be expanding into China through a partnership with Wenzhou Medical University in Wenzhou, China, on Tuesday.

"The unique aspect of this collaboration focused on functional medical genomics is the scale of the capabilities in both Wenzhou and at JAX," Edison Liu, president and CEO of JAX, said in a prepared statement. "With such scale and coordinated action, we can resolve some of the most complex questions in genomic medicine."

The partnership between WMU and JAX will provide the biomed lab access to the clinical experience and expertise of the medical university and its affiliated hospitals, while WMU has access to JAX's years of research and scientific expertise, according to a news release.

Two phase collaboration

The collaboration will take place in two phases, according to the lab. Phase one will entail hiring 75 to 100 new employees, including principal investigators and scientific and administrative staff, as well as establishing a clinical research presence on the campus of WMU. The Maine biomed lab will initiate medical genomics research collaborations among WMU and JAX faculty both in the United States and China.

In the second phase, JAX said it anticipates building its own laboratory supported by the Ouhai District and WMU and hiring an additional 300 to 500 employees.

As part of the agreement, JAX will provide training for Chinese-based researchers in Wenzhou and at the Laboratory's JAX-Genomic Medicine facility in Farmington, Conn.

"The JAX-Wenzhou collaboration represents a significant milestone in advancing our mission to discover precise genomic solutions for disease and empower the global biomedical community in the shared quest to improve human health," Charles E. Hewett, executive vice president of JAX, said in a statement. "We look forward to working with our Chinese colleagues in our shared goal to enable researchers to do even better research and help to accelerate the development of treatments and cures for disease for people around the world."

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