A new €68m centre for medical device research, CÚRAM, has been be opened at NUI Galway in Ireland.

The center will be used to develop advanced medical devices for chronic diseases, including diabetes, Parkinson’s and heart disease.

The facility will secure €49m investment from Science Foundation Ireland and medical device firms over six years. It has also secured another €19m investment from the EU’s Horizon 2020 programme.

Various Irish and multi-national companies that have partnered with CÚRAM include Aerogen, Arch Therapeutics, Aquila Bioscience, Boston Scientific, Collagen Solutions, Cook Medical, and Medical Energetics.

Medtronic, Mylan, Neograft, Neosurgical, Neuravi, Ocean Harvest Technology, Spraybase, Stem Cell Technologies, Stryker Instruments and Viscus Biologics are the other firms that are partnered with the research facility.

The research center includes six academic partners, including UCD, Trinity College Dublin, University of Limerick, University College Cork, The Royal College of Surgeons Ireland and NUI Galway.

According to the university, CURAM has about 250 researchers engaged in current projects both in collaboration with industry and on blue-sky research.

Ireland jobs, enterprise and innovation minister Mary Mitchell O’Connor said: “The medtech sector is hugely important to the Irish economy with over 400 companies based here, it accounts for over 29,000 jobs and is responsible for €12.6bn worth of exports.”

CÚRAM scientific director professor Abhay Pandit said: “Chronic diseases are the particular focus of CÚRAM’s research. 

“Working with industry partners and clinicians, we will better understand the ‘hostile environment’ of the body and advance medical devices to the next stage where they mimic the body’s biology.”

Image: CÚRAM scientific director professor Abhay Pandit. Photo: courtesy of Andrew Downes, xposure.