Teva Pharmaceuticals and the United Kingdom on Thursday announced a joint $21 million fund for researching dementia. The vast majority of the funding – $20 million – will come from Teva.

The collaboration, which will be with the UK’s National Health Service’s National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Office for Clinical Research Infrastructure (NOCRI), will also aim to reduce the complexity of running a drug development program by creating a single point of entry into the UK health system.

“We are delighted to collaborate with NIHR on both clinical development and early dementia research,” said Michael Hayden, Teva’s president of global R&D and chief scientific officer. “It will be a catalyst for innovation to take place within a healthcare system that is admired the world over. The relationship between Teva, Israel and the UK is a long and fruitful one and I am proud that we can now add another example of us working together as partners for innovation and health.”

The global cost of managing dementia exceeds $604 billion a year, and the number of people living with it is set to triple within the next 40 years, according to the World Health Organization.

On a tour of the Teva facilities in Jerusalem, UK Prime Minister David Cameron praised Israeli innovation and Teva in particular, noting that the generic pharmaceutical giant provides one out of every six drugs used in the UK’s national health service.

“Success in technology, in innovation, in enterprise particularly in our pharmaceutical and healthcare sector are absolutely vital if Britain and Israel are going to be winners in what I call the global race,” Cameron said. Without investing in new technology, he argued, “we will find we will lose jobs in traditional industries but not be able to replace them, which we so badly need to do.”

Collaborations in science, research, healthcare and pharmaceuticals were among the strongest building blocks of the British-Israeli relationship, he said. “We are just scratching the surface of what is possible between our two countries.”

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu added his enthusiastic support, saying, “The future belongs to those who innovate.”

Thursday’s announcement followed Wednesday’s signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the two countries to work together on advancing digital cooperation.

Please LIKE our Facebook page - it makes us stronger