Lancaster set to play major role in new genetics centre
Construction work on a new Genetics Knowledge Park in Manchester, in which Lancaster University is set to play a major role, has been completed.
The North West Genetics Knowledge Park (Nowgen) is one of six centres across England and Wales established by the Department of Health and the Department of Trade & Industry as part of the Government’s NHS plan to ensure that the outcomes of genetics research are successfully applied.
When it opens in December Nowgen will provide academic programmes led by Lancaster University’s Professor of Bioethics Ruth Chadwick, centring on the ethical, legal and social dimensions of genetics and drawing on Lancaster’s particular expertise in this field.
The centre will also offer programmes looking at what sort of genetic services people want in the NHS, how they should be delivered and what the costs and outcomes are. In addition, Nowgen will have a programme of professional education, schools and outreach activities.
Nowgen is a partnership project of universities from the North West, including Lancaster, Manchester and Liverpool, as well as the Central Manchester and Manchester Children’s University Hospitals NHS Trust. Funding for the new £3.5 million building came from the Northwest Development Agency and the European Regional Development Fund.
The Nowgen Centre will be ready for occupation in December and will provide facilities and support for knowledge dissemination, including public reception, exhibition and interactive areas, a teaching laboratory and teaching/meeting rooms. Nowgen’s management, research, regional co-ordination and business development activities will also be driven from the centre.