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Gareth Carpenter
24 Aug 2021

Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre aims to 'solve major pharma industry challenges'

£35 million public-private collaboration to develop next-generation pharmaceutical manufacturing processes to drive forward innovation in the medicines supply chain

Exterior construction work has been completed on the £35 million Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre in Scotland, designed to address major pharmaceutical industry challenges and accelerate access to affordable medicines.

The facility, located in Renfrewshire at the heart of the emerging Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District Scotland (AMIDS), is the result of a public-private collaboration between technology innovation organisation, CPI, the University of Strathclyde, UK Research and Innovation, Scottish Enterprise and pharma firms, AstraZeneca and GlaxoSmithKline.

The project partners said the facility is set to develop next-generation pharmaceutical manufacturing processes to drive forward innovation in the medicines supply chain.

“Innovation in novel medicines and the pharmaceutical supply chain is critical for adapting to the changing needs of global populations and driving a healthier society,” the partners said in a statement. “The environmental and financial implications of pharmaceutical manufacturing can hinder the ability to efficiently respond to global health challenges and streamline medicine supply to patients.”

They added that the new facility will help to solve these pharma challenges by providing advanced technologies alongside sustainable business growth expertise.

Industry, academia, healthcare providers, and regulators will work collaboratively within a GMP environment to drive new technologies and provide a clear pathway for their adoption into the pharmaceutical supply chain. A suite of clean rooms will support users to develop processes using industry 4.0 manufacturing technologies, including continuous, digital, and autonomous manufacturing.

Operating at a commercial scale, the facility will industrialise novel techniques for producing patient-centric medicines, including real-time release of drugs and integrated process analytics. The technologies will transform manufacturing processes, support the reduction of materials used in process development, and accelerate timelines for achieving right first time and real-time release manufacturing principles.

Following the topping out, internal fitout of the facility is scheduled to be completed in early 2022.

In the first five years of its operation, the centre is expected to support over 100 jobs, both technical and non-technical, and generate £200 million investment in advanced technologies.

From early 2022, companies will be able to visit the facility and engage in discussions around accessing the technology and participating in ambitious collaborative projects to develop new pharma innovations.

“The Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre will help the pharmaceutical industry to increase momentum in technology translation by creating partnerships, working with regulators and partnering with innovators,” said Dave Tudor, Managing Director of the Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre, Quality and Biologics, at CPI. “This will ultimately lead to a reduction in time to market, drive productivity, improve compliance and reduce the carbon footprint of medicines manufacturing.”

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