The UK Department of Trade and Industry has commissioned a new national programme designed to develop and share good practice in bioanalytical methodology. The programme, called Measurements for Biotechnology, consists of a series of separate projects that will tackle analytical issues which emerge throughout the biotechnology industry, each awarded by competitive tender.
The initial projects set out for tender include cell-based testing, microarray measurement, physico-chemical methods, proteomics/genomics and trace biological measurement.
The main aims for the project, according to the MfB's website, are to improve the accuracy and reliability of biomeasurements important for industry, strengthen the measurement science underpinning the regulatory regime for biotechnology and ensure that the UK biomeasurement system is co-ordinated and developed in harmony with those of other countries.
"The programme breaks new ground for DTI's National Measurement System, which works towards a consistent and internationally recognised basis for all measurement in the UK," according to the MfB. The challenge is to extend into the biosciences the successful effort to improve measurement in the physical and chemical sciences, it added.
Each project aims to make biomeasurements more comparable so that knowledge can be transferred more effectively across the key interfaces for the commercial exploitation of biotechnology, such as between academia, industry and regulators.