Cell and gene therapy manufacturing capacity continues to increase in the UK


Report highlights a number of key changes in the cell and gene therapy manufacturing landscape during the last 12 months

The Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult has released its third annual survey of GMP cell and gene therapy manufacturing facilities in the UK.

The review summarises the capability and capacity of all cell and gene therapy manufacturing facilities in the UK that hold an MHRA-license. The survey, initiated in 2013, has continued annually following a recommendation by the UK government House of Lords 2013-14 Regenerative Medicine report.

The report highlights a number of key changes in the cell and gene therapy manufacturing landscape during the last 12 months, including the following:

  • a continued increase in the number of GMP manufacturing facilities: 22 facilities in 2016, rising from 18 in 2015 and 13 in 2014; of this increase, three are gene therapy manufacturing facilities and an additional facility in cell therapy
  • an increase in the number of people employed across UK cell and gene therapy manufacturers by a further 20% — from 324 to 391
  • an increased geographical spread of facilities throughout the UK: new additions for 2016 were based in London, Glasgow, Oxford and Birmingham
  • a 9% increase in total cleanroom footprint for cell therapy facilities, now totalling nearly 1900m2, whilst gene therapy cleanroom footprint almost trebled to more than 2400m2.

‘Ensuring our manufacturing capability and capacity is continuing to grow is critical to the further development of a world-leading cell and gene therapy industry for the UK. This is why we were asked by government to produce these annual reviews, to ensure we are on track,’ said Keith Thompson, CEO at the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult.

‘The data in the 2016 report show growth across all the markers that we analyse and forecasts a considerable increase again in the next 12 months. The opening of our own 7200m2 cell and gene therapy facility in the UK next year will provide a step change to the UK’s manufacturing offering that will help deliver revolutionary treatments for patients and assist companies to develop manufacturing in the UK,’ he added.

‘The UK is making fantastic progress in manufacturing cell and gene therapies and shown great foresight by developing the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult. It is vital that the UK has the capacity and skills needed to stay globally competitive in advanced therapy manufacturing,’ said Ian McCubbin, SVP North America, Japan & Global Pharma Supply, GSK and chair of the Medicines Manufacturing Industry Partnership (MMIP).

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‘The newly formed MMIP Advanced Therapy Manufacturing Taskforce, co-chaired by myself and George Freeman, Minister for Life Sciences, aims to build on this success and anchor the manufacturing and associated supply chain of advanced therapy products here in the UK.’