(L - R): Sam and John Dawson.

University of Sunderland announces new research institute following £5m donation

The largest ever individual donation to the University of Sunderland from a former student and pharmaceutical entrepreneur aims to help improve the lives of millions of people around the world.

Today, the University announces the creation of the John Dawson Drug Discovery and Development Research Institute on its City campus in Sunderland.

The Institute will be created following a £5m donation from John Dawson and his wife, Sam. John, a former student of the University, is the former CEO of Alliance Pharma, a “world-leading” international healthcare organisation.

The announcement is the latest in a series of projects, including last year’s opening of a £5m anatomy centre, which is putting the University on the frontline of health-related education, training, research, and innovation

The new Research Institute will play a “key role” in turning laboratory research and innovation into “life-changing” therapies for clinical practice, working closely with the NHS and the pharmaceutical industry.

John commented: “50 years on from graduating in Pharmacy at Sunderland and having developed a career in the pharmaceutical industry, I was pleased to reconnect with the University a couple of years ago.

“I was immediately impressed by the developments that had been achieved in that intervening half-century and was keen to assist the University continue its development, particularly in the health arena.

“I am therefore delighted to facilitate the University’s new Drug Discovery and Development Research Institute and look forward to working with the team as they bring projects to fruition.”

The Institute will be housed in the University’s Sciences Complex, which will be renamed The John Dawson Sciences Complex. It will bring together expertise in clinical, laboratory and data science to address issues of local, national and international importance.

Sir David Bell KCB DL, the University’s vice-chancellor and chief executive, added: “I am enormously grateful to John and Sam Dawson for their immense generosity in supporting this new Research Institute in the crucially important fields of drug discovery and development.

“The fact that John is ‘one of us’ is an added bonus as his life and career demonstrate the good that our graduates do in so many different walks of life”.

By Matthew Neville – Senior Correspondent, Bdaily

Our Partners