UK failing to capitalise on disease research as it lags behind Europe, says ABPI

The UK is failing to capitalise on its world leading disease research, according to the country’s pharmaceutical body.

The country could be unlocking significant economic benefits in better competing with its European rivals on genomics, the study of genomes which is crucial to understanding how diseases develop.

In report published today by the Association of the British Pharmaceutical industry (ABPI), the body has urged the government to ensure that public funding is used to create “a globally competitive offer” for disease research based in the UK.

The body also said it was “vital” that the recruitment, retention and development of its workforce in the sector is better supported.

However, a shortage of STEM skills continues to weigh heavily on the country’s pharmaceutical industry, as well as defence and aerospace sectors.

More than 140 genomics companies are based in the UK, generating £2.4bn for the country’s economy.

“Though industry is already working with the NHS to increase access to genomic medicine, more needs to be done to ensure the very best patient outcomes,” ABPI chief executive Richard Torbett said.

“Our recommendations are intended to help the government, the NHS and the science community work more effectively to help patients feel the benefits of the UK’s world-leading genomics capability.”

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