A digital centre for excellence on Teesside has revealed it's put £20 million back into the local economy through job creation.
DigitalCity Innovation (DCI) at Teesside University says it's created at least 265 jobs and 190 companies since 2008, through business support programmes and local industry connections.
Laura Woods, head of academic enterprise at Teesside University, said:
"We've looked closely into what the Tees Valley and wider North East need in terms of skilled graduates, and which areas of business are growing.
"These figures show DCI is working. A cluster of digital businesses has been built up in the North East and there are talented graduates and postgraduates being produced to work in these businesses."
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Two north east universities have been awarded a grant to conduct new research into the condition ME or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS).
Newcastle and Northumbria Universities, along with Sheffield University, have been given £61,000 by the charity Action for M.E for three pilot projects.
Researchers at Newcastle have been awarded more than £25,000 for a study looking at muscle dysfunction in ME. The team, led by Dr Phil Manning and Prof Julia Newton, also hope to develop a drug pre-testing system.
Prof Newton said: "This funding will allow us to more fully understand the muscle abnormalities that occur in people with ME and begin to develop treatments to reverse the abnormalities that we have already seen in our muscle MRI studies."
Northumbria University have been given £11,550 to research sleep patterns of people with ME.
Dr Jason Ellis, said: "Until now no one has studied the relationship between sleep and daytime fatigue from the patient's own perspective."
He added: "This is an exciting opportunity to examine sleep from several angle with our overall aim being to improve our understanding and treatment of this condition."
Symptoms of ME include muscle pain, sleep disturbance, and exhaustion. The illness affects an estimated 250,000 people in the UK.
Action for M.E is the country's leading charity for people with ME and their carers.