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By Dr Lee Ching Shya  I  8 January 2023

KUALA LUMPUR - Universiti Malaya (UM) via the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Office (Research & Innovation) in conjunction with the UM Research Carnival (UMRC) has announced the partnership between the Universiti Malaya and their industry collaborators: Touch Safe Sdn. Bhd., AGTC Genomics Sdn. Bhd. and Reskills EdTech Sdn. Bhd.


The partnerships between UM and industry collaborators are strengthened by establishing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the parties, respectively. Universiti Malaya has a partnership with Touch Safe Sdn. Bhd. (Touch Safe) to commercialize the antiviral coating agent that was invented by Prof. Nasrudin and Dr. Shakeel from the UM Power Energy Dedicated Advanced Centre (UMPEDAC). A pilot project was sponsored by Touch Safe, to apply the coating agent to the furniture in the auditorium and toilets at the Research Management and Innovations Complex (RMIC). According to Professor Ir. Dr. Shaliza Ibrahim, by collaborating with Touch Safe, UM and Touch Safe will be able to share knowledge and resources to bring the innovation to fruition.

“Industry-academia partnership is a key factor in the open innovation ecosystem, as universities and technology-based companies can come together to drive research commercialization. This partnership enables a technology push from the university and a technology pull from the industry, which can be mutually beneficial. Through this partnership, universities can gain access to industry resources and expertise, while companies can benefit from the latest research and knowledge,” Prof. Ir. Dr. Shaliza Ibrahim, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research & Innovation), said during her opening speech.


UM signed an MOU with AGTC Genomics Sdn. Bhd. (AGTC Genomics) to focus on the research collaboration in advancing next-generation sequencing approaches in medical science research, capacity building, and biomarker development for colorectal cancer prevention. AGTC Genomics will work with the experts from the Faculty of Medicine, i.e., Assoc. Prof. Dr. Cindy Teh, Prof. Dr. Ivy Chung, Prof. Dr. Sasheela, Dr. Kumutha, and Dr. Ngoi, to develop new inventions in underlying causes of genetic diseases and other medical conditions.

She also mentioned, “industry-academia partnerships can help foster entrepreneurship, as students and faculty members can gain access to resources and training to help them turn their ideas into successful businesses.”


The collaboration between UM represented by the UM Centre of Innovation and Enterprise (UMCIE), and Reskills EdTech is an invaluable opportunity for students to expand their knowledge and sharpen their skillset. Through the Reskills e-learning platform, students are able to access a vast array of industry experts, resources, and training materials, which could provide a good foundation for students to gain a deeper understanding of the subject matter as well as provide them with the practical tools and knowledge necessary to succeed in a modern marketplace.

“With the right support, industry-academia partnerships can be a powerful force for advancing research commercialization and university entrepreneurship,” She said.


Among those present were the Head of Sales, Touch Safe Sdn. Bhd., Mr. Richard Tan; CEO of AGTC Genomics Sdn. Bhd., Dr. Leong Chee Onn, Head Of Marketing, Reskills EdTech Sdn. Bhd., Ms. Yen Lee; Director of UM Power Energy Dedicated Advanced Centre (UMPEDAC), Prof. Dr. Nasrudin Bin Abdul Rahim; Deputy Dean (Research), Faculty of Medicine, Prof. Dr. Sanjay Rampal A/L Lekhraj Rampal and Director of UM Centre of Innovation and Enterprise (UMCIE), Prof. Dr. Ivy Chung.