Effort will sequence the genomes of 45,000 participants from across Ireland to identify novel targets and advance the clinical development of better treatments for a range of serious diseases
- Focus is on key AbbVie therapeutic areas including oncology, neuroscience and immunology
- Genomics Medicine Ireland will partner with Ireland’s leading clinicians and researchers and propel bioscience innovation in Ireland
- WuXi NextCODE’s integrated genomics platform will be used to organise and mine a secure, scalable database of whole genome sequence and medical data to power novel disease insights
Dublin, January 9th 2017 – AbbVie (NYSE: ABBV), a global biopharmaceutical company, life-sciences startup Genomics Medicine Ireland Limited (GMI), and WuXi NextCODE, the global contract genomics organisation, today announced the launch of a long-term strategic alliance to conduct population genomics research in Ireland aimed at advancing the discovery and development of novel therapeutic approaches to a range of serious diseases. The 15-year collaboration will focus on major chronic diseases within oncology, neuroscience and immunology that affect hundreds of thousands of people in Ireland and hundreds of millions worldwide. Financial terms were not disclosed.
The alliance will result in the sequencing of 45,000 genomes from volunteer participants across Ireland to seek novel insights into the biological processes that underlie complex disease. AbbVie will use the research database developed by GMI to identify new molecular approaches for therapeutic drug discovery and development as well as to develop companion diagnostics. The alliance builds on AbbVie’s substantial existing presence in Ireland, which includes more than 600 employees and investments of more than $130 million since 2013.
“Genomics is transforming the way we understand some of the world’s most devastating diseases and enabling the discovery of new approaches that have the potential to deliver much greater benefit to patients,” said Jim Sullivan, Ph.D., vice president, pharmaceutical discovery, AbbVie. “This alliance is an important part of our research strategy and complements our significant footprint here in Ireland.”
Daniel Crowley, acting CEO of GMI, commented: “This partnership validates the vision that created Genomics Medicine Ireland. With AbbVie and WuXi NextCODE we will leverage our deep expertise in life sciences and the unique characteristics of the Irish population to discover critical insights into disease, disease progression, and therapeutic response. The resulting therapies to cure and prevent these diseases will benefit patients both here in Ireland and around the world.”
“GMI’s alliance with AbbVie demonstrates the potential of GMI to drive world-class innovation in healthcare and provides the opportunity for Irish clinicians and researchers to advance genetic discovery and for patients to benefit from the prospective development of new therapeutics,” said Paul Saunders, Head of Innovation with the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund.
AbbVie is a global, research-based biopharmaceutical company formed in 2013 following separation from Abbott Laboratories. The company’s mission is to use its expertise, dedicated people and unique approach to innovation to develop and market advanced therapies that address some of the world’s most complex and serious diseases. Together with its wholly-owned subsidiary, Pharmacyclics, AbbVie employs more than 28,000 people worldwide and markets medicines in more than 170 countries. For further information on the company and its people, portfolio and commitments, please visit www.abbvie.com. Follow @abbvie on Twitter or view careers on our Facebook or LinkedIn page.
AbbVie in Ireland
AbbVie employs almost 600 people across five sites in Ireland. The company has two manufacturing plants in Sligo and a third in Cork, each of which is uniquely focused on supporting portions of AbbVie’s top 20 products. The company has invested steadily in Ireland since its launch in 2013 announcing capital investments of more than €130m at its three manufacturing centers over the past three years. In late 2015, AbbVie also launched two new therapeutic research collaborations valued at €10 million with academic institutions in Cork and Dublin in partnership with the Science Foundation Ireland (SFI).
Some statements in this news release may be forward-looking statements for purposes of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The words “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “project” and similar expressions, among others, generally identify forward-looking statements. AbbVie cautions that these forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, challenges to intellectual property, competition from other products, difficulties inherent in the research and development process, adverse litigation or government action, and changes to laws and regulations applicable to our industry.
About Genomics Medicine Ireland Limited
Founded in 2015, Genomics Medicine Ireland Limited (GMI) is an Irish life-sciences company leading large-scale, population-based genome research studies on the island of Ireland examining the relationship between genetics, health and disease. It is building a preeminent disease-specific database of population genomics. GMI works in collaboration with clinicians, patients, academic researchers and global biotech and pharmaceutical sectors to discover pathways to new treatments and new diagnostics for people both here in Ireland and around the world.
GMI’s partners include investors ARCH Venture Partners, Polaris Partners, GV (formerly Google Ventures), the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund, and corporate partner Amgen and its subsidiary deCODE genetics. Collectively, they bring multi-decade experience in disease genomics to GMI. www.genomicsmed.ie
About WuXi NextCODE
WuXi NextCODE is a fully integrated global contract genomics organization. With offices in Shanghai; Kendall Square in Cambridge, Massachusetts; and Reykjavik, Iceland, we offer comprehensive services that enable population, precision medicine, diagnostics and wellness initiatives and enterprises to use the genome to improve health around the world. Our capabilities span study design, sequencing, secondary analysis, storage, and interpretation and scalable analytics – all backed by the most proven and widely used technology for organizing, mining and sharing genome sequence data. We are also applying the same capabilities to advance a growing range of sequence-based tests and scans in China. WuXi NextCODE is a subsidiary of WuXi AppTec. Visit us on the web at wuxinextcode.com.