On the blog today, we run through some brief highlights from the main sessions at the UK Bioscience Forum on 20 October. View pictures from the conference below in our slideshow, or check out the album at your own pace on Flickr.


Our opening keynote speech from NHS England Chief Executive Simon Stevens set the scene for the day, as he emphasised the importance and shared public interest in the life science sector. UK bioscience plays a central role in developing the treatments needed for future generations here and around the globe, from investing in and carrying out research and development, to getting drugs from the lab and into patients.

This theme was continued with our first panel of the day, chaired by Aisling Burnand, CEO of the AMRC, which examined the impact of UK bioscience in the field of type one diabetes. BIA member Arecor and our charity of the year JDRF provided some background to their recent collaboration, working to create concentrated insulin. Both partners stressed the importance of a linked approach between the charity and industry sectors, which can provide not only funding, but the validation of patient need, scientific validation and an ecosystem of experts. Delegates also heard first hand about the impact of the sector’s research and development from Sarah Liveing, whose daughter lives with type one. If you’re interested in finding out more, watch our video on the collaboration.

The day continued with our usual slot from BBSRC’s Innovator of the Year, won this year by Professor Tom Brown from the University of Oxford for his for high impact serial entrepreneurship in DNA chemistry and outstanding commitment to innovation.

Elsewhere, during the conference, our panels of experts offered their thoughts and opinions on a range of important sector topics ranging from the importance of effective media relations to access to orphan medicines and, of course, Brexit. It was also fantastic to be able to celebrate the recent Biomedical Catalyst win at our Autumn Reception.