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Wellcome invests £6.3m in its Centre for Mitochondrial Research

Wellcome has today announced £6.3m of funding for its Centre for Mitochondrial Research at Newcastle University over the next five years.

The facility is part of the University’s Faculty of Medical Sciences and was established in May 2012.

Its aim is to transform the lives of patients with mitochondrial disease by integrating basic and clinical research, training exceptional young researchers and undertaking public and policy engagement.

Professor Sir Doug Turnbull, director of the Centre for Mitochondrial Research, said: “I am delighted that the Wellcome Centre for Mitochondrial Research at Newcastle University has been funded.

“The Wellcome Centre is about supporting research excellence and our aim is to use the very best science to improve the lives of our patients."

Leading pioneering technique

The Wellcome Centre for Mitochondrial Research is leading the development of a pioneering IVF technique to protect future generations from the risk of mitochondrial disease.

Last year, the House of Commons and House of Lords voted to legalise the technique using biological material from three people to reduce the risk of babies being born with these devastating diseases.

Known as ‘mitochondrial donation’, the IVF technique involves replacing faulty mitochondria inherited from the mother with the healthy mitochondria of another woman.

An independent expert panel, convened by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA), has found the technique is at an acceptable stage for cautious clinical use and their findings will be considered by the HFEA this month.

Wellcome has announced funding of £118m to 14 major research centres across the country over the next five years.

The Centres all aim to advance understanding of health and disease, and span fundamental and social sciences, clinical research and engineering.

For the full article please visit the Newcastle University Website.

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