Biopharmaceutical company Celgene has underlined the importance of building bridges between industry, government and academia in R&D by launching the Celgene Institute of Translational Research Europe (CITRE) in Seville, Spain.

CITRE will serve as a European hub for cutting-edge translational science, Celgene said. Leveraging the company’s established leadership in the fields of oncology and haematology, its main objective will be to minimise the gap between basic research and clinical trials to the benefit of patients.

According to Sol Barer, board chairman and chief executive officer of Celgene, CITRE “represents a new model for research in Europe, based on qualities that are fundamental to success: collaboration, communication and progress”.

Bringing together key players from industry, government and academia, the Institute will “expedite the discovery of innovative approaches in cellular therapies for patients with otherwise limited options who are in need of new solutions”, he added.

CITRE will focus on technologies including cell signalling, cellular therapies, tumour biobanking, epigenetics and bioinformatics. It will comprise five facilities addressing, respectively, cell cultures, citometry, electronic microscopy, genomics and proteomics.

The first Celgene centre outside the US to be dedicated exclusively to R&D, CITRE will employ qualified scientists from Europe and around the world. It will build around a core translational research unit, which will co-ordinate and manage Celgene’s medical research in Europe.