The focus of the world was on Belfast as global political leader’s past, and present arrived in Belfast to mark the 25th anniversary of the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement. The three-day conference (17-19th April) hosted by Queens University Belfast provided a unique opportunity for reflection on the Agreement’s impact on Northern Ireland and its place on the world stage. Former President of the United States Bill Clinton, and the Chancellor of Queen’s University Belfast, Secretary Hillary Clinton, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and the Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar were among the global leaders participating in this international conference.
The Good Friday Agreement, also known as the Belfast Agreement, was a political deal that effectively brought an end to 30 years of sectarian conflict in Northern Ireland. It was signed on 10 April 1998 and approved by a public vote in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Alongside its impact on peace, the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement has also had a lasting impact on cancer research and cancer care on the island of Ireland. Pursuant to the Good Friday Agreement, a partnership was historically signed between the Departments of Health for Ireland and Northern Ireland and the world–renowned US National Cancer Institute (NCI) in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, giving rise to the Ireland – Northern Ireland – National Cancer Institute Cancer Consortium. Pioneered by Professor Patrick (Paddy) Johnston of Queen’s University Belfast the aim of the Consortium was, ‘to reduce cancer incidence and mortality on the island of Ireland through cross-border and transatlantic collaborations in cancer research and education.’
Founder and CEO of CV6 Therapeutics, Professor Robert Ladner was given the opportunity to speak at the conference during The Agreement 25 Cancer Showcase event, ‘Cancer Knows No Borders’ which celebrated the successes that have led the island of Ireland to take its place on the global cancer research stage. During his presentation, Dr Ladner highlighted the critical importance that the Good Friday Agreement had on paving the way for economic growth in Northern Ireland and for attracting overseas investment in the biotech and pharmaceutical fields saying:
“The good Friday agreement was essential to deliver the first cancer drug developed in Northern Ireland by a start-up company that came from the US and is now headquartered at Queen’s University Belfast. The drug is now entering clinical trials and has the potential to improve treatment outcomes for patients on a global scale.”
Dr Ladner also paid tribute to the late Patrick G. Johnston who served as the Chairman of the Board of Directors for CV6 Therapeutics from 2016 until his untimely passing in 2017, highlighting how important Paddys mentorship, friendship and his vision for industry-academic partnerships ultimately paved the way for CV6 Therapeutics to relocate to Belfast, Northern Ireland.
CV6 Therapeutics is developing value-based, first-in-class medications that are scalable to address global unmet medical needs in the oncology and inflammatory disease markets. To learn more about CV6 Therapeutics and its product pipeline including CV6-168, or to contact us, click here: http://www.cv6t.com