The future of biomedical research - the Francis Crick Institute


This animation shows what the Francis Crick Institute will look like in 2015

If anyone doubted Britain's ambition to be at the vanguard of biomedical research then take a look at the huge building going up in central London behind the British Library and St Pancras station.

The Francis Crick Institute will be home to around 1,400 scientists and 120 research groups. It is a partnership between six organisations: Cancer Research UK, the Medical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust, UCL (University College London), Imperial College London and King's College London.

At present it is just a building site, but the animation above (it will be there shortly!) shows what the Crick will look like when it opens in 2015.

Its director, Sir Paul Nurse said it would be "probably the largest single laboratory building in Europe, possibly the world."

The Crick will work with universities and hospitals around the UK to study everything from cancer, heart disease, stroke, infections, immune disorders and illnesses linked to ageing and obesity.

Sir Paul shared the Nobel prize for Medicine in 2001 for the discovery of molecules which control the cell cycle. He said: "We are building an institute that will carry out the highest quality biomedical research into the biology underpinning health and disease. The Crick will play a crucial national role - training excellent scientists for the rest of the country and supporting the wider biomedical research endeavour."

The Institute is named after Francis Crick, one of the co-discoverers of the structure of DNA.

Bricks and mortar don't lead to breakthroughs, but rather the people who work in them. So it will be results that count. But the creation of this massive research centre in the heart of London is a statement of intent.

Sir Paul praised the commitment of successive governments to the Crick and said it would carry out science which improved health and delivered innovations which benefited the economy.

Fergus Walsh Article written by Fergus Walsh Fergus Walsh Medical correspondent

Ebola trial volunteer immunised

A trial of an experimental vaccine against the Ebola virus has begun in Oxford.

Read full article

More on This Story

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites


This entry is now closed for comments

Jump to comments pagination
  • rate this

    Comment number 3.

    I am pleased that this institute will not only investigate the immune system as it can be used to treat cancer. Many, many people thoughout the world have their lives made more difficult by conditions which involve the immune system e.g rheumatoid arthritis, scleroderma, multiple sclerosis, sjogren's syndrome to name but a few. I hope these too will receive apppropriate attention.

  • rate this

    Comment number 2.

    Withholding knowledge that should be freely available is immoral and holds science back

    Power and control are far easier to manage than knowledge and truth

    Look at the internet and the headaches it has caused, even for our so called liberal democracies

    Assange is still holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy
    The media warning us about piracy and hackers on an almost daily basis
    Global Warming etc

  • rate this

    Comment number 1.

    And by then hopefully the research papers will be "open access" and available to the public. This can only benefit society & science. The current practice of publishing companies such as Elsevier, Springer and Wiley making big profits from over-charging universities etc for access to knowledge that should be freely available is immoral and holds science back.



BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.