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Boris Johnson gives UKCMRI the green light

PUBLISHED: 12:30 14 January 2011 | UPDATED: 10:30 17 January 2011

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THE Mayor of London Boris Johnson has today approved plans for a world class medical research centre in St Pancras.

Camden Council approved plans for the UK Centre for Medical Research and Innovation in December despite opposition from residents and councillors, and the Mayor has now given the final go-ahead.

The pioneering laboratory and research institution, located in Brill Place behind the British Museum, will become a world class facility for cancer research and scientists will develop life-changing new treatments for illnesses including cancers, heart disease, strokes and flu.

Residents opposed the plans because they said the building will be too big and too high, overlooking many flats and obstructing their sunlight, it will not provide any housing in an area which desperately needs flats and there is no open space.

Fears were also raised over security at the centre and what types of viruses would be tested on.

Mr Johnson said: “This visionary new centre will become a beacon of excellence in the fight against fatal diseases, making a real difference to the treatment of patients.

“What is more, top class scientists from around the globe will be looking to London as a global centre for medical research, attracting the brightest and best scientific minds to the capital.

“I look forward to hearing about major medical breakthroughs stemming directly from the work of the scientists at this fabulous new facility.”

The director and chief executive of UKCMRI, Sir Paul Nurse said: “UKCMRI will be an institute where discoveries will be made by researchers from many disciplines - biologists, chemists, physicists, engineers, computer scientists and mathematicians - working together in new ways.

“This will speed up our ability to tackle diseases including cancer, heart disease and stroke, infections and diseases of the immune and nervous systems. It will improve the health and lives of families throughout the world and will bring enormous opportunities for the London and UK economy.”


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