Science for Health
17 April 2012
NIMR's future research plans have been endorsed by MRC Council following the recent five-yearly review.
MRC Council considered the report of the review committee at its meeting in Dec 2011. It agreed that the Institute had delivered internationally competitive research during the previous five years and had exciting plans in place going forward. Four key areas of NIMR’s research were identified as being of critical importance to the MRC’s overall strategy:
Council endorsed the importance of these four areas of science and their expectation is that they should form a central part of The Francis Crick Institute’s strategy. Members commented that the establishment of the new programmes offered an opportunity to support up-and-coming young researchers.
Council agreed a funding package of £199.8m (representing a level funding settlement) over the period 2012-2017, plus £1.65m to maintain the building and facilities in good order until the move to the Crick Institute.
Council agreed that Professor Jim Smith was providing excellent and strong leadership during a period of significant uncertainty for the Institute.
The outcome of the Institute quinquennial review was very positive. The report showed the Institute at its best, with everyone pulling together for a tremendous result. I am pleased that our world-class support services were strongly commended by the visiting committee, as being important to the Institute’s science. In particular, the work of Biological Services was strongly praised by the review committee, confirming my own view that we have one of the best-run facilities in the world.
Future scientific plans build on recent success and include the creation of a Division of Physiology and Metabolism, under Alex Gould, and a revitalised Division of Neurophysiology. Together these will allow us to drive forward some critically important emerging areas of biomedical science. James Briscoe and Jean-Paul Vincent, as new joint heads of the Division of Developmental Biology, will bring new approaches to understanding the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying embryonic development.
The MRC carries out scientific reviews of the work being carried out in Institutes and their Divisions in order to be assured of their strategic justification, scientific excellence and value for money. These reviews take place every five years.
Research teams currently based at NIMR will move to The Francis Crick Institute in 2015.
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