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Across the media last week, after two years of work the Review on Antimicrobial Resistance published its final report. Building on eight interim papers, this is the final report from Lord O’Neill’s Review, established by the UK Prime Minister David Cameron in 2014 to avoid the world being “cast back into the dark ages of medicine”. The report explores the mounting problem of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), why action is needed to combat it and then provides an overview of the solutions that the Review thinks should be implemented to curtail unnecessary use and increase the supply of new antimicrobials.

The BIA welcomes this comprehensive and thorough Review. The UK has a vibrant life science ecosystem of companies with the capabilities and ambition to make a real difference in tackling the global challenge of antimicrobial resistance. The new market incentives identified by the Review are key for life science entrepreneurs to deliver the next generation of antibiotics we all need. Read the reactions to the report from BIA members who are already playing an active role in tackling AMR here.

As predicted, the Queen’s Speech announced a Higher Education and Research Bill that will bring the seven Research Councils, Innovate UK, and a new body called Research England under one umbrella called UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). It was also separately announced that the outgoing Second Private Secretary to the Treasury, John Kingman, will lead UKRI as an interim Chair while it is being established. His appointment means someone who has shown a deep interest and support for UK bioscience translation is the new boss. The inclusion of the term ‘Innovation’ in the name of this new body is also a positive signal at the importance of translation. You can read more about the contents of the Queen’s Speech on our blog.

Celebrating innovation in the sector, last week the winners of both OneStart Europe and the BBSRC’s Innovator of the Year were revealed. It was great to be at the OneStart Europe Finals dinner to see Germany-based Captain T Cell crowned 2016 winners last Monday – mentored by BIA Board member Will West. Many congratulations to the team and to all the finalists who presented some fantastic pitches on the evening.

On the BBSRC’s Innovator of the Year, well done to Dr Martin Pule who was named BBSRC Most Promising Innovator 2016 for frontier innovations in T-cell medicine, technology used to found BIA member Autolus. It was also great to see technology from another BIA member, C4X Discovery, amongst the finalists with co-founder Dr Andrew Almond recognised for his work optimising the design and development of medicines. Some great examples of the high quality science being developed in the UK.

Look forward to seeing many of you at events in Oxford, London and Cambridge this week.

Best

Steve