A DEAL has been sealed to create a centre for pioneering medical imaging technology.

Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Bournemouth University signed the agreement to create the medical science facility at the university’s Bournemouth Gateway building.

The Institute for Medical Imaging and Visualisation will house research, innovation and educational programmes, as well as advances in clinical practice and the commercial development of related intellectual property.

The LEP awarded the university £1.4million through the government’s Local Growth Fund to set up the institute and buy the MRI, 3D/4D ultrasound equipment and other machinery.

The government’s minister for local growth, Jake Berry MP, said: “We’re committed to boosting economic growth across the whole of the UK and building a Britain fit for the future.

“Thanks to over £1.4m of Local Growth Funding, this state-of-the-art institute will be equipped with the tools and resources it needs to be a global leader in innovative medical research while driving partnerships between the best minds in science and business throughout the UK.”

Jim Stewart, chair of Dorset LEP, said: “As one of the top 150 young universities in the world, Bournemouth University is a major economic asset to Dorset, and with innovation as one of the primary drivers of economic growth, is likely to feature strongly in our Local Industrial Strategy.

“Dorset LEP is pleased to have already invested over £1.65m in Growth Deal funding to help create a nationally and internationally renowned facility delivering cutting edge solutions to aid recovery from orthopaedic surgery at Bournemouth University.

“This new Institute for Medical Imaging and Visualisation will help to further position Dorset as a pioneer for ‘healthy living’ for medical technology and a leader in health innovation.”

Professor Stephen Tee, executive dean of the Faculty of Health and Social Sciences at Bournemouth University said: “As the use of artificial intelligence, computer visualisation and augmented reality continues to complement advances in medical technology both nationally and globally, it’s crucial that significant investment is put into these areas.

“Bournemouth University is pleased to have been allocated more than £1.4m of funding from Dorset LEP to develop an Institute for Medical Imaging and Visualisation at BU that will serve to bring together those working in research, education, medical industries and healthcare services from 2020 and onwards into the future.

“This important Growth Deal funding enables us to explore new research areas and build a new suite of programmes that will develop highly-skilled technical and medical roles within the region.”