BIRAX Regenerative Medicine Initiative

BIRAX (the Britain Israel Research and Academic Exchange Partnership) is a £10 million initiative of the British Council and British Embassy in Israel in collaboration with the Pears Foundation and the UJIA.

BIRAX funds cutting-edge research using stem cell and regenerative medicine therapies to tackle some of the world’s most challenging conditions and diseases including cardiovascular and liver disease, diabetes and Parkinson’s. 

Over £7 million has been committed to 15 world-class projects including eight joint medical research projects announced in February 2015. These included research to use heart cells to restore damaged heart muscle and the use of breath tests for the diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease.

Alan Gemmell, Director of the British Council in Israel commented: “Through BIRAX, the best scientists in Britain and Israel are working together to develop therapies and find cures for diseases that affect millions of people. We’re proud to be able to support labs across the UK and fund their work through partnerships with world-leading medical research foundations.”

Professor Chris Mason, co-Chair of the BIRAX Research Call and Professor of Regenerative Medicine Bioprocessing, UCL said: "Bringing together world-leading scientists from Israel and the UK will accelerate cures and transformative therapies for a number of serious conditions that impact the lives of millions of patients and their carers.”

In 2015 world-leading medical research charities joined the programme: Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation, Alzheimer’s Society, Arthritis Research UK, the British Heart Foundation, JDRF, the MS Society and Parkinson’s UK

Founder donors include: Celia and Edward Atkin CBE, the Sheila and Denis Cohen Charitable Trust, the Barbara and Stanley Fink Foundation, the Israeli Ministry of Science, Technology and Space, the Kahn Foundation, the Glycobiology Institute at the University of Oxford, the Medical Research Council, the Parasol Foundation Trust , Pears Foundation, Rosetrees Trust, Maurice and Vivienne Wohl Philanthropic Foundation, Wolfson Family Charitable Trust, and the UJIA.