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Our vision and background

The Manchester Molecular Pathology Innovation Centre (MMPathIC) launched in October 2015 after The University of Manchester received £2.9 million to develop new tests based on molecular pathology techniques.

Background

The Medical Research Council undertook a review of the UK molecular pathology landscape and released this in 2014.

The challenges identified by the MRC for getting new diagnostics and molecular pathology-based tests to the clinic were:

  • lack of a defined development pathway (for diagnostics);
  • a fragmented landscape (separation of the three key stakeholders: academia, pathology service and industry);
  • complexity (the challenge of integrating and interpreting numerous markers and multi-platform signatures).

To address these challenges, the MRC (with co-funding from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Council (EPSRC)) released a call for funding for a network of molecular pathology nodes.

The molecular pathology nodes were expected to each be a multidisciplinary centre of innovative molecular diagnostic test discovery and development bringing together the research base, pathology/genetic services and industry.

Six molecular pathology nodes were funded, including the Manchester node, MMPathIC. These nodes were expected to cooperate as a network in the evaluation and diffusion of next generation tests.

Vision

MMPathIC addresses these challenges through its pipeline model for working, which aims to bring key stakeholders (academia, clinical/ pathology service, and industry) into proximity, better define the developmental pathway, and offer cross-cutting training approaches to expand the skills base to support molecular pathology and diagnostic development.

The MMPathIC vision is to deliver at least six new biomarker tests or biomarker-based technologies to the clinic/market by October 2019.