Palermo will be home to the largest biotech research center in Europe: Italy has published in the Official Gazette the 113 million Euro tender that will assign the construction works to build Fondazione Ri.MED’s Centro per le biotecnologie e la ricerca biomedica (Cbrb) in the town of Carini, 20 kilometers from Palermo. The Center will host a structural biology laboratory, biomedical engineering research labs, neuroscience and molecular imaging laboratories, facilities for in vivo preclinical studies, vaccine development laboratories, equipment for the development of new regenerative medicine solutions.
Biotech to bringing innovation back to Italy…
The Cbrb Biotech center is scheduled to be completed in 2020; it will create 600 jobs, of which 500 in R&D, and will help Sicily become an international hub for innovation and life sciences. It will be the largest in Europe. Of the 500 new jobs in research and development, many will serve to take back home Italian researchers and scientists that have left the country to work in R&D facilities abroad, mostly in the United States. Although the Sicilian center will focus on broad international collaborations and will attract international talents, it is important for the region and the whole Belpaese to be able to retain its best resources to generate innovation in Italy. In fact, the facility will include a start-up accelerator as well.
…with an eye on international collaborations
The Biotech center in Carini will play a strategic role both for Sicily’s and Italy’s economy and public health; in fact, the Fondazione Ri.MED was set up through a government’s decree with a public-private management model that replicates the one that Italy has applied to other institutions and helps build a fruitful link between public funding and private investments, academia and industry. In this case, the project brings together the Italian government with Sicily’s Regional administration, the Cnr (Italy’s National Research Council) and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (Upmc). The Cbrb will improve Italy’s position in the international scientific community and promote Italy’s innovation in promising fields as neuroscience, regenerative medicine, tissue engineering and biomedical device development, drug discovery, immuno-oncology, structural and computational biology.
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