Search to Begin for Partners in Britain’s First Cell Therapies Technology and Innovation Centre

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Work has begun on creating an elite national centre to focus on cell therapies which will work with an emerging industrial sector with the prospect of significantly reducing health spending and vastly increasing the quality of life for many people with serious or chronic illnesses.

Work has begun on creating an elite national centre to focus on cell therapies which will work with an emerging industrial sector with the prospect of significantly reducing health spending and vastly increasing the quality of life for many people with serious or chronic illnesses.

The cell therapies technology and innovation centre will provide technology, expertise and technical leadership offering invaluable support to companies working on cell therapies, enabling the UK to reinforce its position as a world leader in the science and delivery of healthcare solutions.

The new centre will be one of a network of six to eight technology and innovation centres to be established by the Technology Strategy Board, with a government investment of more than £200 million over the next four years.

The cell therapy technology and innovation centre will provide businesses with access to equipment and expertise that may otherwise be out of their reach, research and development capabilities and the ability to explore the potential of emerging technologies. The centre will aid the rapid commercialisation of the outputs of world class research in cell biology, stem cells, clinical medicine and bioengineering – and will build on strong government funding in regenerative medicine and related areas.

The Technology Strategy Board will seek expressions of interest in May from organisations interested in establishing and running the centre and it is hoped the successful bidder will be appointed in October (see notes for editors for details on the process).

Iain Gray, Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board said:
“This is a very exciting and important development and part of the programme announced by the government in October to set up a new network of business focussed centres, which will make world-leading technical capability available to companies so that they can solve technical commercialisation challenges, and develop products. Technology and innovation centres will contribute to the country’s economic growth and further centres will be announced in the future.”

The new centre will focus on cell therapies and advanced therapeutics and will help support the development and commercialisation of these medicinal products as well as providing the underpinning technologies for manufacturing, quality control, safety and efficacy challenges for new treatments.

Cell therapies have the potential of providing significant medical advances and have already shown impact in areas such as skin regeneration for burns patients.

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Nick Sheppard
Technology Strategy Board
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