Friday, May 2, 2014

The University of Maryland, College Park (UMD), and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, have joined a research collaboration between the University System of Maryland and MedImmune, the global biologics research and development arm of AstraZeneca. This expansion follows the September 2013 announcement in which MedImmune and the University of Maryland, Baltimore, announced a five-year, $6 million collaboration to drive novel bioscience research in the state of Maryland.

(l-r) Philip DeShong, Daniel Stein and David MosserFive research projects, which will be conducted under the expanded agreement, focus on important areas of unmet or underserved medical needs, namely cardiac disease, inflammatory disease, cancer and vaccine development. Two of the five projects will be led by professors in the UMD College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences. 

Professors Philip DeShong, chemistry and biochemistry, and Daniel Stein, cell biology and molecular genetics, will study a novel nanoparticle vaccine delivery system with unique stability and immune-stimulating potential.    

David Mosser, professor of cell biology and molecular genetics, will evaluate the role of specific phagocytes in inflammatory diseases.

"We are excited to expand this collaboration to include the resources of the University System of Maryland's three major research universities and to begin work on important projects in several of our core therapeutic areas," said Dr. Bahija Jallal, executive vice president, MedImmune. "This groundbreaking effort will help support our mission of bringing novel new medicines to patients by capitalizing on the innovative science and talent available right here, in Maryland's bioscience hub."

The collaboration also includes the BioMaryland Center, a part of the Department of Business & Economic Development, representing a unique model to foster and support innovation in Maryland.

William E. Kirwan, Chancellor of the University System of Maryland, said, "The University System of Maryland is an economic engine for the State and with this important partnership with Maryland's largest biotech company, we will further expand our translational research endeavors."

MedImmune's research collaboration with the University System of Maryland is one of several regional collaborations with leading research institutions and the state to advance Maryland as a top biotechnology cluster, advance innovative science and accelerate development of key medicines for patients.

--University of Maryland/College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences--