HORIBA UK partners with academia to develop new methods for drug discovery and disease diagnosis

HORIBA, a global leader in spectroscopy with over 200 years’ experience, joins the lifETIME Centre for Doctoral Training in engineered tissues for discovery, industry & medicine.

HORIBA UK announces that it has joined the lifETIME Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) as an Industry Partner. This partnership aims to provide a new generation of scientists with skills and approaches to reduce and replace the need for animal testing, so transforming drug discovery, toxicology screening and regenerative medicine.

The lifETIME (Engineered Tissues for Discovery, Industry and Medicine) CDT is a partnership between the University of Glasgow, University of Birmingham, Aston University and CÚRAM – Science Foundation Ireland at the National University of Ireland, Galway. Offering fully funded PhD studentships, the CDT focuses on high-value skills training across a range of scientific disciplines to enable research students to develop non-animal technologies (NATs) that better mimic physiology and disease.

In partnership with industry, the lifETIME CDT harnesses knowledge-exchange and co-creation in pioneering science to develop bioengineered humanised 3D models, microfluidics, diagnostics and sensing platforms. As an industry partner, HORIBA will co-create, support and mentor a 4-year research project to explore how spectroscopy can help drive new methods of cell screening and disease diagnosis based on animal-free research.

In addition to supporting leading research, industry partners such as HORIBA also enable students to experience different industrial roles and strengthen their multidisciplinary skills to guide their future career choice. Not only in academic/industrial research, but also marketing, regulation, standards, or policy. This provides student cohorts with the professional skills training needed to ultimately enhance industrial and societal impact.

“Our involvement with doctoral training centres keeps us close to cutting-edge UK science, and allows us to give something back through support and nurture of a new generation of scientists,” said Dr Simon FitzGerald, Technical Manager, HORIBA UK. “We are particularly excited to join lifETIME CDT as we can enable and contribute to incredible science that will drive real improvements in disease diagnosis, medicine and clinical science. It covers a broad range of research driven by world-leading scientists, much of which is underpinned by the spectroscopy and measurement technologies that are at the core of HORIBA’s expertise. HORIBA and the lifETIME CDT is a perfect synergy!”

Matthew Dalby, Professor of Cell Engineering at the University of Glasgow, and Director of the lifETIME CDT, commented, “HORIBA will work with lifETIME to make our models a reality, to reduce and replace the need for animal testing and to offer new skills to our PhD students. The opportunities that this partnership brings are huge – HORIBA’s expertise in spectroscopic and analytical science will be of great benefit for our students and the science they do. The involvement of industry really helps us to deliver enhanced training and opportunities to our students. HORIBA, and our other partner companies, are critical to our success.” The CDT partnership also facilitates wider networking opportunities between industry partners and the many leading academics involved. This supports the discovery of potential synergies between HORIBA and major research institutions to help identify and develop future technologies for further scientific advancements.

HORIBA has already proved its value as an industry partner with a number of other academic institutions, including the ReNU Centre for Doctoral Training which is focused on another HORIBA core market, energy. Other active scientific partnerships across a range of HORIBA’s areas of expertise include University of Southampton (photonics), University of York, King’s College London and Guy’s Hospital (spectroscopy for disease diagnosis), Northumbria University (novel materials for display technology), Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult, and CPACT (Centre for Process Analytics and Control Technology).