SSPC secures €1.5m for advances biopharmaceutical research

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10 November 2014 | 0

Minister for Skills, Research & Innovation Damien English announced a new industry academic collaboration at the Synthesis & Solid State Pharmaceutical Centre (SSPC) in University of Limerick. The research, led by Prof Kieran Hodnett, will work with seven industry partners – Allergan Pharmaceuticals Ireland, BioMarin Manufacturing Ireland, Eli Lilly and Company, Genzyme, Janssen Biologics, MSD and Pfizer – and three research performing organisations (National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training, Trinity College Dublin and Dublin City University) – as part of the new Advanced Biopharmaceutical Technologies research collaboration.

A total of €1,050,000 million funding will be delivered by the Department of Jobs through Science Foundation Ireland’s (SFI) Spokes programme, coupled with €450,000 in cash and in-kind contributions from industry.

Commenting at the launch, Minister English said: “Government and industry are setting a stake in the ground as to the direction of Irish research into the future – creating centres of research excellence in areas that are strategically important and relevant to Ireland’s future. This new initiative in the Synthesis & Solid State Pharmaceutical Centre will deepen the roots of the pharmaceutical industry in Ireland, which supports over 60,000 Irish jobs and exports over €50 billion annually, by encouraging innovation and expanding career opportunities in the sector.”

The manufacturing process of biotherapeutic drugs is complex and costly, with problems relating to formulation and protein instability often affecting the biological performance of these therapeutics. As a result of this new Advanced Biopharmaceutical Technologies collaboration, some of Ireland’s leading scientists and engineers will work with industry partners to develop innovative single-use disposable plastic bag systems for bioprocessing. This project will generate significant intellectual property for Irish universities and gain commercial advantage for Irish-based biopharma companies, with the goal of establishing Ireland as a global hub for pharmaceutical process innovation and advanced manufacturing.

Biopharmaceutical Technologies collaboration, some of Ireland’s leading scientists and engineers will work with industry partners to develop innovative single-use disposable plastic bag systems for bioprocessing. This project will generate significant intellectual property for Irish universities and gain commercial advantage for Irish-based biopharma companies, with the goal of establishing Ireland as a Global Hub for Pharmaceutical Process Innovation and Advanced Manufacturing.

Prof Hodnett said: “By combining academic and industrial resources, this collaboration will open up unique world class capabilities for addressing key biopharmaceutical issues. This will in turn lead to further investment and result in the incentivising of R&D activities in Ireland. The collaboration will enhance the research ecosystem in Ireland and will significantly augment the retention, creation and transformation of direct jobs within the Biopharmaceutical sector in Ireland”.

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