New UK Biotech Centres To Boost Cell And Gene Therapies

The National Health Service Blood and Transplant from the UK, which takes care of blood as well as platelet donations as well as organ, stem cell, and tissue transplants in the country, has come up with a new clinical biotech centre so as to boost the UK’s capacity when it comes to making DNA plasmids as well as viral vectors.

The facility, which is going to be located in North Bristol at Filton Road, is going to be a part of the effort to overcome the nation’s limited capacity to produce the materials that are needed for gene therapies as well as genetically modified cell therapies, as per the agency. The facility is also going to support preclinical work and early-phase clinical trials.

This will help cutting-edge research with the capacity to develop cures when it comes to certain critical diseases that, as of now, can only be treated and are often proven to be fatal, according to NHSBT’s director of cell, apheresis, and gene therapies, Lilian Hook.

Apparently, the site has been constructed with the help of a government grant amounting to 10 million pounds, or $10.7 million.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic that hit the world in early 2020, the demand for new as well as innovative cell and gene therapies has skyrocketed, thereby triggering a requirement for more cell therapy production facilities. Before the pandemic, the UK government had gone on to form a Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult in 2012, which happened to be in response to the diminishing number of pharmaceutical manufacturing sites across the country. Thereafter, in 2015, the group announced that it would build an $85 million manufacturing facility to boost the biotech capacities of the country. The present NHSBT site isn’t related to that program.