Press release: Investment in UK cell and gene therapy manufacturing set to continue

New data released today shows cell and gene therapy manufacturing facilities are rapidly becoming operational reflecting job expansion in the sector. Additional 6,000m2 of cell and gene therapy manufacturing space expected to become available within the next 12 months.

The Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult (CGT Catapult) today published the sixth annual UK cell and gene therapy Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) manufacturing report, showing how the manufacturing sector in academia and industry is still growing for the fifth consecutive year and that facilities are rapidly becoming operational.

The data published today shows that the 60% increase in manufacturing space reported in 2018 has become fully functional in the past year. The number of employees in the cell and gene therapy manufacturing industry has expanded from being 150 in 2014, to 500 reported in 2018 and has doubled to over 1,000 staff in the past year. Employment in the sector is now predicted to reach over 6,000 jobs by 2024 with over 3,000 in manufacturing and bioprocessing.

The manufacturing capacity in the UK is due to increase even further with 6,000m2 becoming available in 2020; principally from Oxford Biomedica with 4,200m2 at its new Oxbox facility, the 1,200m2 expansion of the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult, and additional space from expansions at Great Ormond Street, Cobra Biologics, The Rayne Cell Therapy facility at King’s College London, NHSBT and SNBTS.

Additional space is then expected to become available in 2021 from RoslinCT and in 2022 from The University of Birmingham and the Rayne Cell Therapy Facility at King’s College London. Further plans for facilities have also been announced from Karoo Therapeutics, Exmoor Pharma, University of Oxford CBF, MeiraGTx and Immetacyte.

Keith Thompson, Chief Executive Officer, Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult

These facilities coming on stream now are evidence of the acceleration of cell and gene therapies towards commercialisation. With significant additional capacity planned it is essential that skilled personnel are available. The Advanced Therapies Apprenticeship Community, designed specifically to train and upskill individuals for the sector, setup in partnership with the Medicines Manufacturing Industry Partnership (MMIP), will become increasingly important.

A copy of the report “Cell and gene therapy GMP manufacturing in the UK: capability and capacity analysis 2019” can be downloaded at ct.catapult.org.uk/manufacturing-surveys

A copy of the report “UK cell and gene therapy skills demand report 2019” can be downloaded at ct.catapult.org.uk/manufacturing-surveys  

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