Designated as a Norwegian Centre of Excellence, the Oslo Cancer Cluster (OCC) is an affiliation of nearly forty members that include industrial companies, academic research institutions, ealth initiatives and support groups in the field of biotechnology with the spotlight on cancer.
OCC activities are geared to supporting and speeding up translational research, all the while allowing patients better access to innovative cancer diagnostics and treatment. As Oslo Cancer Cluster’s CEO, Bjarte Reve, indicates; “The cooperative activities within the OCC are aimed at moving scientific progress from world-class research to the global market. This research takes place within OCC companies and universities, and represents the cutting-edge of cancer research today.”
The OCC has ambitious goals that are supported by cooperation with world-class research at the University of Oslo and other university hospitals, a vibrant Norwegian biotech-industry, and an ongoing alliance with the Comprehensive Cancer Center (CCC). The transition from R&D to the marketplace is facilitated by cooperation with the CCC, the impressive coalition between the Radium Hospital and Rikshospitalet (see separate article). It is in this environment that clinical trials of new cancer treatment methods are carried out that support the ongoing activities of the OCC.
Projects in the Pipeline
Cooperation with the Comprehensive Cancer Center is just one element of the success formula that OCC has in place. Others include ongoing research at the new Cancer Center at Ullevål University Hospital, an epidemiological network, and its strong industrial base of oncology-related companies ranging from spinouts to international biotech companies.
Diversity of membership adds to the cooperative synergies of the OCC. With members that include Norwegian branches of major pharmaceutical companies, well-established Norwegian companies with international markets as well as start-up and venture companies, the ability to see – and act upon – research opportunities is increased. In 2007 there were 63 projects in the clinical pipe-line of the OCC’s Norwegian-based membership. Only Pfizer, one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies, can compete with this amount of oncology projects in different phases of clinical trials.
Dynamic OCC goals are clearly defined for the next five-year period. These include increased productivity and competitiveness among the member companies, increased global attractiveness of research performed inside the Cluster, as well as increasing global market reach for diagnostics, therapies and products that are developed here.
Bjarte Reve, CEO of the Oslo Cancer Cluster.
The OCC was designated as a Norwegian Centre of Expertise by the Norwegian Government in 2006, assuring long-term access to governmental support. This solid governmental backing, combined with the strength and focus of its membership gives the Oslo Cancer Cluster every reason for confidence and optimism in reaching their goals.
While the OCC website
communicates status and news to the external environment, be sure to look for the OCC in 2008 as it participates in events that include Bio2008 in San Diego, the OCC Forum (part of Oslo Innovation Week), and Genesis 2008, as the Oslo Cancer Cluster strives to achieve its vision of reducing the effects of, and, where possible, eradicating cancer.