£100m awarded to BioTech that could help UK prepare for future pandemics

The department for science and technology has announced £100 million in funding for BioTech projects across the UK.

It said that the investment would help prepare for pandemics, innovate farming, and protect against floods.

According to the government, the move comes as it "doubles down" on its commitment support growth and innovation in science by "slashing research red tape" and "unshackling scientists so they can spend more time in the lab creating new vaccines rather than filling out unnecessary forms".

The money will be given to six new ‘Engineering Biology Mission Hubs’ and 22 ‘Mission Award’ projects across the country, with the government saying that the investment would look to build on engineering biology’s "enormous potential" to address global challenges, drive economic growth, and increase national resilience.

“Long term growth is the only way we will deliver the public services and improvements in living standards that every Briton wants for themselves and their families,” said Michelle Donelan, science and technology secretary. “But as history shows, it is technological and scientific advances that are the true engine room of growth, and despite our existing strengths in these sectors, we cannot afford to pat ourselves on our back and take our eye off the ball.”

Donelan also recently unveiled a package of announcements, including £21 million for the world-leading Biobank.

The UK Biobank has been given the cash injection for a new robotic freezer, which will be used to store 20 million samples of biological data - further supporting research that is being used to treat diseases like dementia and Parkinson’s.

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