The Government has announced that The Centre for Process innovation (CPI) will establish and manage a new £38 million centre to encourage innovative solutions in the UK healthcare market. The National Biologics Industrial Innovation Centre (NBIIC) will be a large open access facility that will assist companies of all sizes in the proving and scaling-up of processes to manufacture new biologic medicines such as antibodies and vaccines
The centre is part of the Government’s ‘Strategy for UK Life Sciences’ launched in 2011 to strengthen the UK’s life-science sector. The NBIIC will support the commercialisation of research by promoting collaboration between academia, the National Health Service and industry.
Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts MP, said: Our investment in the NBIIC as part of the Strategy for UK Life Sciences makes clear the level of our commitment to a sector we see as vital to the UK’s long-term economic prospects. We want the UK to remain a location of choice for investment in an increasingly competitive and globalised health life-sciences sector.
“Life-sciences is one of the most truly international sectors – so if we are to continue to be a world player and compete in the global race we must do everything we can to support it. The new centre sends a clear message to the world that we are creating the best environment to invent and manufacture biologic medicines and continue to be a world leader in life sciences”
The public investment in this medicine scale-up and production proving centre has been made to boost the UK pharmaceutical industry in the rapidly growing biologics market and increase the manufacturing capability for products that are developed in this country. The Centre will bridge the gap in biologic capability between research and manufacturing. It will strengthen the UK’s attractiveness as one of the best investment locations for life-sciences companies.
CPI is the UK innovation centre serving the process industries. It is part of the UK’s High Value Manufacturing Catapult and in its 9 year history has created National Centres in Printable Electronics, Industrial Biotechnology and Anaerobic Digestion. CPI works with industry, academia and the public sector to scale-up and prove the next generation of products and processes. It does this by bringing the manufacturing skills of its people together with leading edge capital assets in collaborative innovation partnerships.
Nigel Perry, Chief Executive Officer at CPI, said: “This is hugely significant for the vitally important Pharmaceutical Industry in the UK. It is also hugely significant for CPI and the High Value Manufacturing Catapult and underlines the Government’s commitment to support manufacturing in the UK”
Dr Chris Dowle, Director of Sustainable Processing at CPI, said: “The National Biologics Industry Innovation Centre (NBIIC) will build upon the UK’s excellent research base with its strong pipeline of new potential biopharmaceutical products to help deliver a leading UK industry in bio-manufacturing. In this rapidly growing global marketplace, innovation in manufacturing will be vital to UK success and this will be a primary focus for the NBIIC.”
Biopharmaceuticals are medicines that are produced using biotechnology; they are usually proteins or nucleic acids that have been proven to be effective against target diseases, such as cancer, hereditary diseases and hormonal deficiencies. Recombinant insulin and Herceptin are examples of licensed biopharmaceuticals that have significantly improved the lives of people with debilitating diseases such as breast cancer and diabetes.
Because biopharmaceuticals have specific biologic targets they can be very effective and have fewer side effects. This is important as medicine is moving towards more targeted “personalised” therapies which improve patient outcomes.