Published: 07-03-2022 13:07 | Updated: 07-03-2022 13:08

Agreement between Karolinska Institutet and Karolinska University Hospital an important step in working with precision medicine

President Ole Petter Ottersen shakes hands with Björn Zoega.
KI and KS enter into a cooperation agreement to strengthen collaboration within precision medicine. Photo by: Ulf Sirborn

Karolinska Institutet and Karolinska University Hospital have strengthened collaboration within precision medicine by establishing the Precision Medicine Centre Karolinska (PMCK) and have now entered into a unique cooperation agreement.

Developing a cooperation agreement between KI and the hospital has been one step in working to overcome the boundaries between academia and the healthcare services. The agreement facilitates and streamlines collaboration and ensures consistency in organisation and working practices. There is already excellent collaboration between KI and the hospital in precision medicine, and this is applied, for example, in the diagnosis of cancer and rare diseases.

"The agreement is an important step in formalising this collaboration and permanently establishing the great efforts made by the Precision Medicine Task Force in recent years" says Ole Petter Otterson, principal at Karolinska Institutet. "In the long term, developments in precision medicine will result in considerable benefits to society through improved healthcare, reduced care needs and shorter periods of sick leave. But above all, these developments bring benefits to patients, who can be given more accurate diagnoses and, accordingly, better medical treatment. It is also important to include prevention and rehabilitation in this collaboration on precision medicine."

The PMCK, which is part of the Life Science strategy of Region Stockholm, was founded in February 2021 in order to more quickly implement new precision medicine diagnostics within the healthcare services; it is now part of the hospital in the form of a strategic development unit that works directly under the hospital director. The agreement makes it possible for the hospital and KI to share resources, infrastructure and skills.

"Thanks to this agreement, , says Björn Zoëga, director of Karolinska University Hospital, "the PMCK will now be able to further develop a model that brings world-leading research to the everyday life of the healthcare services, to the benefit of patients. We now have yet another important element in place that will allow us to press ahead with full force our efforts to implement precision medicine in additional areas for the patients."

The PMCK is part of an initiative for an accelerated implementation of precision medicine (Task Force), led by the dean of KI Nord (North), Professor Anna Martling. Professor and chief physician Anna Wedell from Karolinska University Hospital supervises the PMCK.