New Investment in UK’s Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult

Published: September 11, 2017

£12m Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund award will double current capacity of the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult Manufacturing Centre in Stevenage, Hertfordshire (UK), enabling more companies to develop cell therapy products for the global market.

 As part of a £197 million investment in the healthcare and life sciences sector, a £12 million award from the UK Government’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund will significantly increase the current size and capability of the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult (CGT Catapult) large-scale GMP Manufacturing Centre in Stevenage, Hertfordshire, UK. The award, which builds on the current £55 million investment in the project, allows the Centre’s capacity to double, offering businesses developing cell therapy products further opportunities to accelerate trials and worldwide commercialization to bring these rapidly evolving medicines to patients.

The award, announced by the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Greg Clark MP, is part of the Government’s agenda to invest in best-in-class technology via Innovate UK and the Catapult Programme, which speeds up the manufacture and market availability of innovative therapies while further building the exporting capability of the UK’s biopharmaceutical sector.

In addition, a further £30 million investment in new Advanced Therapies Treatment Centres will see the creation of three hospital-based sites designed to transform the UK’s ability to deliver cell and gene therapies to patients.

“Cell and gene therapies are a core component of a revolution in medicine across a broad array of disease areas and continued Government investment is helping us to rapidly evolve the UK as a global hub,” said Keith Thompson, Chief Executive Officer, CGT Catapult.

“Our mission is to facilitate the growth of a major UK industry, bringing transformative therapies to patients which present new options in challenging disease areas. Key to this is the availability of an advanced, robust supply and logistics infrastructure, which our novel Manufacturing Centre delivers. Industry demand for these services is high and we are looking forward to welcoming our first collaborators to the Centre this year.”

CGT Catapult was established as an independent centre of excellence to advance the growth of the UK cell and gene therapy industry, by bridging the gap between scientific research and full-scale commercialization. With more than 120 employees focusing on cell and gene therapy technologies, the organization works with its partners in academia and industry to ensure these life-changing therapies can be developed for use in health services throughout the world. CGT Catapult offers leading-edge capability, technology and innovation to enable companies to take products into clinical trials and provide clinical, process development, manufacturing, regulatory, health economics and market access expertise. The Centre aims to make the UK a compelling and logical choice for UK and international partners to develop and commercialize these advanced therapies

The Stevenage-based Manufacturing Centre, scheduled to open in Autumn 2017, will provide the UK with the manufacturing facilities needed for large scale cell and gene therapy clinical studies and commercialization, in line with Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) standards. Its innovative business model will allow the development of new manufacturing processes in a collaborative environment. The Centre features a series of large clean room modules which can be occupied by businesses conducting trials or commercial manufacture of these therapies at significant scale. The Centre is designed to help de-risk capital investment in product development by reducing the outlay required to bring trials to fruition and to collaborate on the new technologies needed in manufacture and supply from the factory to the bedside.

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