In the biggest investment by the pharmaceutical industry, the British pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline has agreed to donate a fund of $25 million at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute in Cambridge.

As the part of the five year term, the company will provide research support to the Harvard University and four Harvard-affiliated hospitals to try to find cures for cancer, obesity, diabetes, and neurological, cardiac, and musculoskeletal diseases.

The company also agreed to help fund Harvard’s seed grant program, which supports early stage research. GlaxoSmithKline also signed a pact with OncoMed Pharmaceuticals Inc last December to develop drugs that attack cancer stem cells.

The agreement is likely to be a turning point in the pharmaceutical industry as majority of the companies do not want to invest money to stem cell research. They think that the research wasn’t mature enough to create life-saving drugs. However the situation is changing now. Brock Reeve, executive director of the stem cell institute said,

“Now we have started to see that change.”

As example, we can have the names of companies like Pfizer Inc., Advanced Cell Technology Inc. and Geron Corp. All these companies have shown their interest to stem cell research. Pfizer Inc has made a stem cell research unit in April with offices in the United Kingdom and Cambridge. However , all of them are facing challenges and other difficulties in their research activities.

Source: boston.com