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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/X025446/1
Title: Smart biomanufacturing for genomic medicines
Principal Investigator: Bracewell, Professor DG
Other Investigators:
Rafiq, Dr QA Hales, Dr JE Szita, Professor N
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Cytiva Europe
Department: Biochemical Engineering
Organisation: UCL
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 May 2024 Ends: 30 April 2029 Value (£): 1,255,304
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Biochemical engineering Development (Biosciences)
Drug Formulation & Delivery Genomics
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Manufacturing Healthcare
Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
15 Nov 2022 Prosperity Partnership Round 5 Full Proposal Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
This partnership builds on the existing Pall-UCL Centre of Excellence collaboration which is carrying out fundamental research to address biomanufacturing industry needs. It brings together Pall (a global integrated separations solutions supplier to the Life Sciences and industrial sectors) and UCL Biochemical Engineering (a world leader in bioprocess research creating novel engineering solutions to underpin future biomanufacturing operations across a range of sectors) in a research collaboration to address the challenges of manufacturing next generation biological medicines. These therapies are made possible by the delivery of genetic molecules to the site of disease to control protein production in cells and tissue. The current toolbox of genetic molecules includes small interfering ribonucleic acid (siRNA), messenger RNA (mRNA), self-amplifying RNA (SAM), deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and gene editing components such as guide RNA (gRNA), ribonucleoprotein (RNP) and nucleases. Delivery is made possible using a variety of vectors including lipid nanoparticles, virus and extracellular vesicles / exosomes. This field of personalised genetic medicine has seen unprecedented growth in over the last decade. In 2021 the gene therapy global market was estimated at £622M with 25% year on year growth and over £10 billion invested in development of the sector.

The UK is a world leader in life science discovery but traditionally this does not translate into revenue generation for the UK via manufacture. This generation of new more complex biological therapies offers the opportunity for the UK to convert its lead in medicines discovery to manufacturing. To take these therapies to market will require specialist NHS-type resource for proof of principle and the scale of manufacture of these new therapies is particularly suited to Pall's specialisation in small-scale rapid response units for manufacture. The Prosperity Partnership is designed to help complete the continuum from life science discovery to manufactured therapies for the patient bringing together UCL bioprocess discoveries and Pall UK's specialism in novel manufacturing units around these new classes of complex personalised biological medicines.

The partnership will be managed by a joint Pall-UCL management committee led by Dr John Welsh for Pall and Prof. Daniel Bracewell for UCL. The committee is constituted of senior leaders with the necessary experience to steer the partnership during its lifetime and update the focus of the research with the fast-moving nature of the bioprocessing sector.

Key Findings
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Potential use in non-academic contexts
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Date Materialised
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