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Merck Serono Launches ? 1 Million Research Grant for Multiple Sclerosis Innovation

GENEVA, Switzerland, Oct. 11, 2012 /CNW/ - Merck Serono, a division of Merck, Darmstadt, Germany, announced today during the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS) congress in Lyon, France, that the company has initiated a new global research award to improve understanding of multiple sclerosis for the ultimate benefit of patients.

The Grant for Multiple Sclerosis Innovation program will award up to one million euros annually to fund innovative research into multiple sclerosis (MS) by academic researchers. Researchers can submit their project proposals via the program's website,, and awardees will be announced at next year's ECTRIMS congress in Copenhagen.

"We are committed to driving innovative research to further contribute to our understanding of the disease and ultimately lead to new medical breakthroughs in multiple sclerosis," said Annalisa Jenkins, Head of Global Drug Development and Medical for Merck Serono. "While tremendous progress has been made over the years, we must continue to search for answers to important scientific questions in the field."

Potential research topics which could be funded through the Grant for Multiple Sclerosis Innovation include MS pathogenesis, predictive markers for treatment response and potential new treatments.

This grant complements other existing programs like Merck Serono's collaboration with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the FastForward™* collaborative fund.

The funds from the Grant for Multiple Sclerosis Innovation will be awarded by EMD Serono for projects based in the United States and Canada and by Merck Serono to those based in the rest of the world.

For more information about the program, and to submit a scientific research project proposal, please visit,

*For more details related to FastForward™, please visit:

About EMD Serono, Canada

EMD Serono is a Division of EMD Inc., Canada. EMD Inc., Canada, is an affiliate of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. In Canada, EMD Serono provides innovative drug therapies that address unmet medical needs in the areas of neurodegenerative diseases, fertility and endocrinology. EMD Serono employs approximately 150 people across Canada and is headquartered in Mississauga, Ontario. For more information, please visit

About Merck Serono

Merck Serono is the biopharmaceutical division of Merck KGaA. With headquarters in Darmstadt, Germany, Merck Serono offers leading brands in 150 countries to help patients with cancer, multiple sclerosis, infertility, endocrine and metabolic disorders as well as cardiovascular diseases. In the United States and Canada, EMD Serono operates as a separately incorporated subsidiary of Merck Serono.

Merck Serono discovers, develops, manufactures and markets prescription medicines of both chemical and biological origin in specialist indications. We have an enduring commitment to deliver novel therapies in our core focus areas of neurodegenerative diseases, oncology and rheumatology.

About Merck

Merck is a global pharmaceutical and chemical company with total revenues of €10.3 billion in 2011, a history that began in 1668, and a future shaped by more than 40,000 employees in 67 countries. Its success is characterized by innovations from entrepreneurial employees. Merck's operating activities come under the umbrella of Merck KGaA, in which the Merck family holds an approximately 70% interest and free shareholders own the remaining approximately 30%. In 1917 the U.S. subsidiary Merck & Co. was expropriated and has been an independent company ever since.

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For further information:

Shikha Prashar

Tel. 1 905-919-0200 ext 5504


Posted: October 2012