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Professor of Molecular Medicine and Director of Research with the RCSI, which is coordinating the Platform, Prof Brian Harvey, told IMN the Platform is in talks with a number of large industrial companies involved in optical materials and biosensors, to compete for funding for academic research into specific diseases, graduate training and the commercial exploitation of intellectual property.

He said the Platform is aiming to coordinate a programme, which attracts €4 - €10 million funding, under FP7. "We are gearing up for a proposal at the next calls in September 2009. We are looking to coordinate a European programme of biophotonics not just to participate in one", Prof Harvey commented.

NBIP Ireland held its inaugural conference last week and launched the €3 million EU Marie Curie Advanced Training Network to provide post doctoral fellows across Ireland and Europe with interdisciplinary research and training programmes in biophotonics and imaging.