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April 25, 2016.
AstraZeneca (AZ) and its biologics R&D arm, MedImmune, have announced an integrated genomics initiative "to transform drug discovery and development across its entire R&D pipeline". The initiative includes new collaborations with Human Longevity, Inc., US; the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute (UK) and The Institute for Molecular Medicine, Finland. AZ will also establish an in-house Centre for Genomics Research to develop a bespoke database comprising genome sequences from samples donated by patients in its clinical trials together with associated clinical and drug response data. Bahija Jallal, EVP, MedImmune, commented: “The fields of genetics and genomics evolve so rapidly that no single company can internalize this type of research and do it all themselves." Menelas Pangalos, EVP, Innovative Medicines & Early Development at AZ, said: “With the advent of next generation sequencing and the increased sophistication of data analysis, the time is now right to immerse ourselves fully in the international genomics community..." Research findings from all collaborations across its genomic platform will be published in peer-reviewed journals, AZ reports. A video explaining the AZ's genomics platform can be viewed here.