Merck Serono set up a novel research collaboration to start innovative projects under the roof of a center operated by BioMed X. The new lab will focus on establishing a completely different way of fostering innovation. With the support of BioMed X, it will allow Merck Serono to run research projects with interdisciplinary project teams of young talented scientists, coached by a supervisor at Merck Serono and an experienced academic in an open-innovation lab facility in Heidelberg.

Top young talent from leading academic institutions worldwide will be selected through assessment centers based on their scientific expertise, creative energy, and passion for product-oriented preclinical R&D. Interdisciplinary project teams will collaborate with guidance of experienced mentors while expanding their scientific network and receiving training in entrepreneurship and leadership.

Under the terms of the agreement, Merck Serono will run its own research projects in the biomedical research lab in Heidelberg operated by BioMed X. The projects will be funded by Merck Serono. The project teams will work on new approaches to cancer therapy.

“Our goal is to seed and boost early stage research projects by placing them into a vibrant environment, bringing in top young talent to work at the interface between industry and academia in one of the top European research hubs in Heidelberg,” explained Bernhard Kirschbaum, head of global research and early development at Merck Serono. “We expect this concept can result in a constant flow of innovative projects and creative talent into Merck Serono.”

In addition to operating the innovation center, BioMed X will be responsible for worldwide recruiting of young talents, providing education to teams, and securing access to academic research infrastructure in Heidelberg.

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