Report on Swedish life science cluster
9 February 2010
Stockholm-Uppsala Life Science has published a comprehensive
report on the research expertise in the Stockholm-Uppsala region of
The region currently hosts over 500 life science companies, 300 major
research projects and more than 25,000 employees — making it one of the
largest life science clusters in Europe.
Universities in the region include the Karolinska Institutet, Uppsala
University, Stockholm University and the Royal Institute for Technology.
Stockholm-Uppsala researchers currently participate in around one third
of all EU-funded life science projects and have developed breakthrough
innovations, such as the pacemaker, recombinant growth hormone and Gamma
Bestselling products developed in the region include ÄKTA, Sephadex
and low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH).
Eight major research areas
The report identifies for the first time the region’s eight major
research areas: protein research / molecular bioscience; neuroscience;
cancer; metabolic diseases; infection; immunology; inflammation and
cardio vascular diseases.
Each of the eight major research areas identified in the report are
supported by strategic research initiatives within several universities;
interact with EU-funded projects; and include a critical mass of
companies with development activities in the field.
Key projects in the region, all involving universities in both
Stockholm and Uppsala, include SciLifeLab, a major molecular bioscience
research project, the Human Proteome Atlas and the Human Regenerative
Ola Björkman, CEO of Stockholm-Uppsala Life Science, said:
"Stockholm-Uppsala has long been one of Europe’s best-kept secrets. Not
only is the region host to deep research expertise, but it also has an
enviable commercial network that actively encourages collaboration and
has been responsible for generating some of the region’s most successful
"I firmly believe the collaborative approach is fundamental to the
development of the life science sector as we move into a new decade and
a new era for the sector – and this first report firmly places
Stockholm-Uppsala at the heart of this evolution.”
2010 Sector outlook
A group of CEOs of major international life science companies based
in the region, world-renown researchers and key politicians who attended
a launch dinner last December were polled on the outlook for 2010. 100%
believe that the life science sector will see growth and confirmed that
their organisations are planning on expanding their current activities.
50% of the luminaries predict an uplift in the IPO market in 2010, with
more confidence in the growth of M&A – 85% predicted an increase in deal
activity in the next 12 months.
When asked about the most attractive features of the
Stockholm-Uppsala region low labour costs for R&D was the favourite
(50%), followed by the presence of biobanks and patient registers (35%)
and management culture (15%). Greater innovation and more investment
were cited as the key factors that will secure the future prosperity of
Commenting on the predictions Ola Björkman said: “These predictions —
made by leaders from the region’s life science sector — bode well for
2010. The anticipated sector growth, combined with greater M&A activity,
builds a much more positive picture as the sector emerges from a tough
The Stockholm-Uppsala Life Science (SULS) website: