The Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) who fund the project sanctioned a group of independent industry advisors to choose the location for the Centre. The group chose Darlington based on accessibility in the form of excellent transport links, particularly the East Coast Mainline, close proximity to existing pharmaceutical companies and relevant universities in the north of England in addition to growth opportunities within the Tees Valley Enterprise Zone.
Commenting on the new centre, Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts MP, said: “The new National Biologics Manufacturing Centre will significantly increase the UK’s manufacturing capability in biologics, keeping us ahead in the global race and strengthening the UK’s position as the location of choice for life sciences companies.”
CPI is the process industry element of the UK government’s national manufacturing strategy dubbed the High Value Manufacturing Catapult. A network of seven technology and innovation centres tasked with stimulating growth within manufacturing sectors throughout the UK.
Biologics or Biopharmaceuticals are medicines manufactured using biotechnology. The products have biological foundations, usually involving live organisms such as cells, bacteria, yeast and others as tools to perform specific manufacturing processes.
Pharmaceuticals produced through biotechnology are delivering significant advances in healthcare. Completely new medicines are being created, notably for rare or previously untreatable diseases. The use of biotechnology is also revolutionising the research and development of new medicines allowing better product targeting and personalised treatments for specific diseases and patient groups.
The new centre, which forms part of CPI, will help companies of all sizes in the biologics market to develop, prove, demonstrate, scale up and ultimately commercialise new biologics process technologies.
Biological medicines already account for around 10 – 15% of the current pharmaceutical market and the sector is outperforming the market as a whole. Significantly, more than one-fifth of new medicines launched on the world market each year are now biotechnology-derived. This will likely grow with the scientific advances currently underway; and the application of biotechnology in healthcare is leading to an increasing number of innovative products.
The flagship National Biologics Centre is part of the UK Governments Strategy for Life Science and will help UK companies to develop a competitive foothold in the growing global biopharmaceutical market.
Dr Chris Dowle, Director of the National Biologics Manufacturing Centre said, “The new facility will support the development of new innovative process technologies and manufacturing routes. We will provide both large and small companies with open access facilities to prove and scale up their process, therefore reducing risk associated with product development. We will build on the UKs competencies in biopharmaceuticals to position ourselves as world leading”.
Steve Bates, Chief Executive Officer of The BioIndustry Association said “The National Biologics Manufacturing Centre will provide a valuable resource for the biologics manufacturing sector in the UK. The centre will help the UK capture more of the expanding global market in high value, high quality manufacture of biologic medicines. It is another key piece in the jigsaw in developing a supportive ecosystem for the bioscience sector alongside successful measures such as the Biomedical Catalyst, Patent Box and the Cell Therapy Catapult.”
Bill Dixon, Leader of Darlington City Council said, “We are delighted that the National Biologics Manufacturing Centre will be located in Darlington. The centre will attract further investment, talent and opportunities into the region and we will play a role in the development and commercialisation of pharmaceuticals into the global marketplace.”
Matthew Herbert Marketing Manager The Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) T: +44 (0)1642 455 340 | M: +44 (0)7795 127 628
@ukCPI | LinkedIn | www.uk-cpi.com
What are Biologics?
Biologics, also known as Biopharmaceuticals are therapeutic proteins or oligonucleotides (DNA or RNA), which are manufactured from living cells, such as microbes or cultured mammalian cells.
Biopharmaceuticals structurally mimic or may be identical to molecules that are naturally found in the body. For example Humulin® is a biosynthetic insulin manufactured from microbes which replaced animal derived insulin and is used to control diabetes.
By virtue of their compatibility with living systems, biopharmaceuticals tend to be more specific and therefore more potent as medicines, and have fewer side effects than chemically synthesised pharmaceuticals which still form the bulk of most of the available medicines.
Today, 16% of all pharmaceuticals are biopharmaceuticals covering a wide range of therapeutic areas, including cancer, autoimmune diseases and a wide range of hereditary diseases. Medical research is driving the discovery and development of more biopharmaceuticals which will cover a broader range of diseases including many which are not treatable with currently available therapeutics.
The Centre for Process Innovation is a UK-based technology innovation centre and part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult. We use applied knowledge in science and engineering combined with state of the art development facilities to enable our clients to develop, prove, prototype and scale up the next generation of products and processes.
Our open innovation model enables clients to develop products and prove processes with minimal risk. We provide assets and expertise so our customers can demonstrate the process before investing substantial amounts of money in capital equipment and training. New products and processes can be shown to be feasible; on paper, in the lab and in the plant before being manufactured at an industrial scale.
By utilising our proven assets and expertise companies can take their products and processes to market faster. There is no down time in production as all of the process development is completed offsite and our technology transfer and engineering teams can help companies to transfer the product or process into full scale production at speed. www.uk-cpi.com
About the High Value Manufacturing Catapult
The High Value Manufacturing Catapult brings together seven institutions of excellence across a broad range of sectors to support UK manufacturing in the commercialisation of cutting edge technologies. The seven centres are: •Advanced Forming Research Centre (University of Strathclyde) •Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (University of Sheffield) •Centre for Process Innovation (Wilton & Sedgefield) •Manufacturing Technology Centre (Ansty, sponsored by the Universities of Birmingham, Loughborough and Nottingham and by TWI) •National Composites Centre (University of Bristol) •Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (Universities of Manchester and Sheffield) •Warwick Manufacturing Group (University of Warwick)
The High Value Manufacturing Catapult focuses its research and development on key areas of high value manufacture, including use of metals and composites in addition to process manufacturing technologies and bio-processing. The Catapult brings together knowledge, expertise and state-of-the-art facilities to help UK businesses innovate to develop novel products and/or manufacturing processes.