The UK Government has announced a new funding programme, worth £109m, for more than 100 of the UK’s top scientists to convert their innovative ideas into commercially available products and services.
The new funding programme is targeted at researchers that aim to tackle some of the world’s greatest challenges, including climate change, cancer diagnosis, and dementia treatment. Each scientist will receive a share of £109m to develop their innovative solutions.
The investment will enable the UK’s most promising scientists and researchers to fund vital equipment and researcher wages, helping to drive forward their studies and projects at speed.
Science Minister Amanda Solloway said: “We are committed to building back better through research and innovation and supporting our science superstars in every corner of the UK. By backing these inspirational Future Leaders Fellows, we will ensure that their brilliant ideas can be transferred straight from the lab into vital everyday products and services that will help to change all our lives for the better.”
Which projects will receive funding?
Among those being supported under the new funding programme, Dr Yoselin Benitez-Alfonso from the University of Leeds, is working to make UK crops resistant to viruses and the effects of climate change such as depleted soils with little water or nutrients. This will help to ensure the UK’s food supply remains strong during severe weather events in the future.
Another project, led by Dr Simon Mitchell at the University of Sussex, will develop personalised medicine to treat the most common form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a cancer that affects the immune system. By studying computer simulated cancer patients using virtual reality technology, he aims to predict the possible progression of the disease and identify the most effective forms of treatment, helping to save lives.
The government is yet to announce all of the project that will receive support under this new funding project, which forms part of the government’s commitment to increase public spending in R&D by £22 billion by 2024 to 2025.