Tianjin banking on biomedical future
By Wang Yu (China Daily)
Updated: 2008-03-19 07:28
A high-profile biomedicine research institute is under construction in Tianjin, and several projects are expected to be developed there, Cheng Jinpei, vice-minister of science and technology, said yesterday.
Most of the construction work will be completed by the end of this year in the rising North China economic power-house, he said.
Developed at a cost of 1 billion yuan ($140 million), the Tianjin International Biomedicine Research Institute has already recruited two deputy directors to manage the operation, Cheng told China Daily on the sidelines of 11th NPC.
The two are from multinational pharmaceutical companies and have been tasked with bringing the very latest biomedical technologies and projects to Tianjin, he said.
"The institution is designed to research and convert biotechnology into usable drugs and, more importantly, integrate biomedicine resources within the coastal city of Tianjin," Cheng said.
The research center will differentiate itself from Beijing's Zhongguancun and Daxing institutes by focusing on the commercialization of biomedical research, he said.
Rao Zihe, president of Nankai University in Tianjin and director of the research institute, said the top priority for the lab is to commercialize biomedical technologies.
Although the main focus for projects has yet to be decided, research into cancer treatments and the development of stem cell bio-drugs are two promising options, Rao said.
Members of the research institute will also seek to broaden the scope of existing research, he said.
(China Daily 03/19/2008 page6)