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Francis Crick Institute to open ‘Skylab’ space for scientific partnerships

Francis Crick Institute to open ‘Skylab’ space for scientific partnerships


A new 11,800 square foot specialised life sciences laboratory will be built on the roof space of The Francis Crick Institute.


The first partners to occupy the space are MSD (tradename of Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, N.J., USA (NYSE: MRK)), having agreed a 3-year lease on the new Skylab. Building will commence this spring and MSD scientists are expected to move into the space as early as April 2024.


As part of the Crick’s strategy, researchers seek strategic partnership opportunities, working with organisations with complementary capabilities, including industrial partners. The aim is to maximise the exploitation of knowledge for societal benefit and the wider UK economy.


Skylab will provide additional laboratory space to further expand partnership opportunities and increase the permeability of Crick science to the outside world. Providing facilities for MSD is important for increasing the life sciences capabilities in the UK.


Industry partners, like MSD, bring complementary expertise, experience and resources to address scientific problems or challenges brought forward by Crick researchers. For example, MSD and Crick scientists are working together to understand age-related diseases, including the onset of neurodegeneration, by building models of Parkinson’s disease using state-of-the-art stem cell technologies.


Speaking on his visit to the Crick, Dr Dean Li, President of MSD Research Labs, commented: “Our talented team of London based scientists is an important and growing part of our discovery network. We are pleased to collaborate with the Francis Crick Institute which provides an active and vibrant setting for life science research.”


Paul Nurse, director of the Crick, said: “Our mission is discovery without boundaries, and partnerships are a critical foundation to achieve this. Our work with MSD to date has proven to be extremely productive as we build on shared goals for understanding specific aspects of health and disease.


“We are thrilled to be welcoming in more researchers with different expertise and perspectives, to further the Crick’s commitment to translating science for societal benefit and economic growth.”

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Last Updated: 09-Mar-2023