UK government invests £100 million into COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing
The UK government has committed £100 million to establish a centre to scale up COVID-19 vaccine and gene therapy manufacturing.
The UK government has announced that an additional £100 million will be contributed to vaccine manufacturing to ensure that any successful COVID-19 prophylactic can be produced at scale in the UK.
The investment will fund a Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult Manufacturing Innovation Centre to accelerate the mass production of a successful COVID-19 vaccine. Due to open in December 2021, the Centre will have the capacity to produce millions of doses each month ensuring the UK has the capabilities to manufacture vaccines, including for emerging diseases, into the future.
Located in Braintree, Essex, the government initiative will upgrade an existing facility to create a fully-licensed manufacturing centre.
The new centre will complement the Vaccines Manufacturing and Innovation Centre (VMIC), which is currently under construction in Oxfordshire following a £93 million investment from the government. Once complete next year, this facility will have the capacity to produce enough vaccine doses to serve the entire UK population at scale.
While the centre is under construction, the government has invested an additional £38 million to establish a rapid deployment facility, opening later this summer, that will support efforts to ensure a successful vaccine is widely available to the public as soon as possible.
The facilities and online training platform will provide industry-standard skills and experience in advanced gene therapy and vaccine manufacturing, including sterile techniques for Good Manufacturing Practice.