Press Release: Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult to expand to Edinburgh BioQuarter

Expansion to Scotland will maximise collaboration with scientific and industrial expertise to further the UK leadership in cell and gene therapiesCGT Catapult laboratories and offices to be constructed at University of Edinburgh Institute for Regeneration and Repair, Edinburgh BioQuarter

The Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult (CGT Catapult) today announces that it will establish offices and laboratories in Edinburgh, Scotland. With this expansion CGT Catapult aims to provide additional, regionally focused support to the cell and gene therapy sector to accelerate product development, clinical trials and adoption.

CGT Catapult Edinburgh is a collaboration with the University of Edinburgh and will be located at the Institute for Regeneration and Repair in the heart of the Edinburgh BioQuarter. CGT Catapult Edinburgh will help to act as a backbone of translational expertise of the UK, to provide practical advice to enable technology development, good manufacturing practices (GMP) translation and clinical trial acceleration to drive company formation and spin-out for the sector in Scotland and the North of England.

The Centre will be led by Dr Jacqueline Barry, Chief Clinical Officer at CGT Catapult, and will work with the strong academic and pharmaceutical services community in central Scotland to drive advanced therapy medicinal product (ATMP) cluster formation and further build the UK’s prominence in ATMP development and supply.

The UK has become the ‘go-to’ place for cell and gene therapy development in Europe, and boasts a complete cell and gene therapy ecosystem. Today’s announcement reinforces this position by drawing on the specific strengths of Edinburgh and the surrounding region.

Matthew Durdy, Chief Executive Officer, CGT Catapult, said:

We are excited to be expanding the CGT Catapult’s presence in Scotland through today’s agreement with the University of Edinburgh. Edinburgh has developed an excellent academic base and the Institute for Regeneration and Repair is projected to have the largest accumulation of stem cell scientists in Europe, with nearly 500 currently located there. We look forward to building on this local expertise and growing the existing infrastructure to create a cluster for the cell and gene therapy industry in Scotland and the North of England. This will help bring these potentially life changing therapies to patients and help create economic opportunity in region.

Professor Stuart Forbes, Director, Institute for Regeneration and Repair, commented:

This is excellent news for the University of Edinburgh. We have made considerable progress towards translation of cell and gene therapies into the clinic and the expansion of the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult provides a great opportunity to boost these endeavours.

Anna Stamp, Interim Programme Director, Edinburgh BioQuarter, said:

We look forward to welcoming the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult as members of the Edinburgh BioQuarter community. It is another feather in the cap for our expanding expertise in advanced therapies, one of the key health innovation pillars of our growing ecosystem. BioQuarter, as a leading innovation location, is the perfect place for CGT Catapult Edinburgh to work with researchers and health innovation businesses to translate, test and nurture new ideas at scale, at pace and on time.