As part of a major restructuring programme, pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca announced yesterday it would be cutting 2,200 jobs from its research and development (R&D) workforce.
The bulk of job losses will affect employees in its neuroscience arm as the company looks to outsource more of its R&D via external collaborations. It will set up a ‘virtual’ neuroscience research unit comprising 40 to 50 AstraZeneca scientists working with partners in academia and industry, such as the Karolinska Institute in Sweden. The unit will be based in Boston, United States, and Cambridge, United Kingdom, while R&D activities will cease at two sites that are focused on neuroscience: Södertälje in Sweden and Montreal in Canada.
In a statement, AstraZeneca’s president of R&D, Martin Mackay, said: “We’ve made an active choice to stay in neuroscience though we will work very differently to share cost, risk and reward with partners in this especially challenging but important field of medical research.”