Research-oriented business the engine for the success of the Turku economic region
The development of research-oriented business based on top expertise is the engine for the success of the Turku economic region. BioTurku® is promoting development of Life Sciences. During ScanBalt Forum we will have two topics from that field: Biomaterials and Serious Infections.
Biomaterial research boosts business in Turku
Long history of biomaterials science in two universities in Turku has reached the level of providing medical and dental devices for clinical use. Research of the well-known Turku bioactive glass from Åbo Akademi University and University of Turku has led to world-wide spread clinical applications by BonAlive Biomaterials Ltd. Later on, bioactive glass was combined with highly durable fibre reinforced composite, which was originally developed by Stick Tech Ltd for various needs by dentists. Combination of the materials is used in the next generation skeletal implants which mimicks bone, is antimicrobial and is integrated to bone. These are replacing metallic implants and they are produced at the moment for cranioplasty implants by Skulle Implants Corporation. Other special innovations are for example silica microspheres with controlled drug release (DelSiTech Ltd) and special sol-gel implant coating allowing soft tissue attachment to implant surface (ID Creations Ltd).
Scientific background for the new innovations comes from the BioCity Turku Biomaterials Medical Device Research Program (www.biomaterials.utu.fi) which is the joint program of the two universities, Turku University Hospital and City of Turku. There tens of scientists and doctoral students in the program.
Infectious disease and antimicrobial resistance research beyond borders
Research on infectious diseases and antimicrobial resistance is an area steeped in tradition in Turku. The patient diagnostics and care provided at Turku University Hospital and research work carried out at the University of Turku, Åbo Akademi University and National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) foster an excellent basis for infectious disease, inflammation and antimicrobial resistance research that leads to better diagnostics and patient care. Research groups working in these organizations are also active members in the BioCity Turku research programmes. In addition, Turku hosts several diagnostics companies (such as ArcDia International Oy Ltd, Abacus Diagnostica Ltd) with focus in infectious diseases. The existence of one compact, multidisciplinary campus area is the major strength of science in Turku and, in this magnitude, is also unique in Finland.
As infectious diseases do not respect borders and antimicrobial resistance is a growing problem also in the Baltic Sea region, active research collaboration and joint actions are needed. In Session entitled “Antimicrobial resistance and Infections”, we will hear interesting talks on ongoing projects and R&D initiatives in this challenging area.