BIA industry-led vaccine manufacturing taskforce welcomes collaboration announcement between AstraZeneca and the Jenner Institute on developing a COVID-19 vaccine

Steve Bates OBE, Chief Executive of the BIA  said: “UK life sciences companies already working on key elements of manufacturing, through the BIA taskforce, look forward to working with AstraZeneca on the vital development and scale up of the Jenner COVID-19 vaccine. Their experience adds valuable industrial heft to this vital development programme.


"Any single development programme carries risk so it is vital the UK's manufacturing capability is able to work at speed on whatever emerges as the most viable vaccine or therapeutic candidate."


The BIA industry-led vaccine manufacturing group is working closely with the Government and reporting directly into the Chief Scientific Advisor, Sir Patrick Vallance. The vaccine manufacturing group will consider any COVID-19 vaccines or therapies which emerge, regardless of whether the vaccine or therapy is UK or internationally based and look to help where it can.


The industry-led vaccine manufacturing group began from conversations between Steve Bates OBE, Chief Executive of the BIA and key members of the life sciences manufacturing community, in early March. From these discussions, the BIA issued a UK manufacturing capacity audit which assessed UK capability to rapidly scale up any vaccine candidates and COVID-19 therapies.


The group is a collaboration of the public sector, private sector companies, academia and universities, building on the UK’s world leading science base and is chaired by Ian McCubbin OBE, former VP for Global Manufacturing and Supply at GlaxoSmithKline.


The group is currently supporting:


  • The Jenner Institute’s adenovirus vaccine candidate at the University of Oxford, led by Dr Sandy Douglas, with Professor Sarah Gilbert and the Clinical BioManufacturing Facility. There has been a successful bid to UKRI in partnership with BIA members Pall, Fujifilm, Cobra, Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult, the Vaccines Manufacturing Innovation Centre (VMIC) and Oxford Biomedica to develop rapid scale up of such a vaccine.
  • The group is also supporting the work of Imperial College London, led by Professor Robin Shattock, where the team is working on an mRNA vaccine.



Notes to Editors

1. For more information, please contact Jack Fellows, Communications and Media Manager at the BIA, or 07825942934


Workstreams & leads

Chair of the Industry-led Vaccine Manufacturing Group: Ian McCubbin

  1. Adenovirus vaccine: Cobra Biologics & Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult
  2. mRNA vaccine manufacture and formulation: CPI
  3. Antibody: Alchemab and Kymab
  4. Fill Finish: Innovate UK
  5. Supply Chain: Fujifilm
  7. Communications: UCL and BIA


Supported by MHRA, UKRI, GSK and KTN


BIA Industry-led vaccine manufacturing group aims


Short term urgent: Accelerate UK manufacturing capacity & capability to produce Xm doses of vaccine

Long term:  Create a UK capability that can deliver 25 million doses in 24 weeks by 2023


2. The group is built upon work done by the BIA during the Ebola crisis, where the BIA completed a UK manufacturing capacity audit of its members, to help support global international co-ordination efforts.


About the BIA

Established over 25 years ago at the infancy of biotechnology, the BioIndustry Association (BIA) is the trade association for innovative life sciences in the UK. Our goal is to secure the UK's position as a global hub and as the best location for innovative research and commercialisation, enabling our world-leading research base to deliver healthcare solutions that can truly make a difference to people's lives.