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Guest blog: State of the UK cell and gene therapy industry in 2021

Despite the pandemic the cell and gene therapy industry in the UK has had another year of significant growth. The Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult has assessed the UK landscape in terms of investment, jobs and manufacturing capabilities and space. The organisation has published two 2021 reports, one focused on skills demand and one on GMP manufacturing.

CEO Update | 15 November 2021

Thank you to everyone who joined us at the Babraham Research Campus in Cambridge last week. It was great to meet BIA members, local start-ups and academics to talk about collaboration. We raised the question of whether more or better collaborations are needed, and ultimately found that success lies in finding a common goal and sharing the benefits of your product.

Video of the week | How Engineers Move Medicine Around The World

Medicines have complex storage and transportation needs, and getting medicines to remote locations requires lots of planning, clever engineering and infrastructure. Check out this video from SciShow on YouTube to find out more about how medicines are transported around the world. 

Video of the Week | National Apprenticeship Week 2019 | Advanced Therapies

During National Apprenticeship Week apprentices and participating employers gathered at Oxford BioMedica to discuss how the first of its kind advanced therapies apprenticeship programme is key to meeting the industry demands for advanced therapies. Dr Ian Campbell, interim Executive Chair, Innovate UK, delivered the keynote speech and highlighted the Government’s commitment to the programme. Other highlights of the day included a Q&A session with current apprentices and the launch of three new programmes in regulatory affairs, senior management and the Scottish modern apprenticeship in life sciences.

Guest blog | Faculty of Medicine, Imperial College London | Student Work Placements Partnership Opportunity

Imperial College School of Medicine is actively seeking industry placements for students in the third year of the innovative BSc Medical Biosciences (BMB) course. During this final year, students undertake specialist modules that specifically examine health problems in the 21st century, and elect a project in either a laboratory, literature-based research project or a work placement.

Guest Blog | UKRI-BBSRC | Doctoral Training Partnerships

Maintaining a highly skilled workforce is vital to business; I can’t imagine anyone reading this blog would dispute that. Similarly indisputable is the need for business to keep up with the latest developments in research and technology. Doctoral training partnerships can help your business to achieve both of these goals, by strengthening ties with academia, shedding light on new ways of working, and increasing recruitment of multi-skilled graduates. UKRI-BBSRC believes that partnerships with the users of research are important in shaping our doctoral training programmes through better understanding of industry’s needs, concerns and aspirations. By working with companies, UKRI-BBSRC seeks to train students capable of becoming future leaders in industry.

Engaging with China | BIA CEO, Steve Bates OBE

I attended and participated in the inaugural WuXi Healthcare Forum in Shanghai in March 2019, enabling me to gain a better insight into some of the key trends occurring in innovative life science in China today.  Here are a few thoughts that I came away with. In the last two years China has made a concerted attempt to, and has delivered, fundamental changes to key aspects of its human healthcare market as part of a broader Government push to improve healthcare for the nation and become a leader in biotechnology. They fall into four areas regulation, reimbursement, talent and capital.

CEO Update | Monday 11 March 2019

I spent last week at the inaugural WuXi Healthcare Forum in Shanghai, and it proved to be a hugely insightful week, with over 2000 global leaders gathered. I spoke on a panel entitled ‘New Era, Golden Opportunities’ where leaders from China and the UK explored how key stakeholders are redefining the innovation narrative – opening up a new era of opportunities and connecting the global life sciences ecosystem. I also attended the British Consulate-General/BioIndustry Association official reception hosted by John Edwards, HM Consul General in Shanghai and Kevin Holland, Minister Counsellor of Life Sciences and Healthcare at the British Embassy in Beijing. You can read a blog on my thoughts from the forum and the other life sciences developments in China here. The UK’s China life sciences tea

Guest blog | Destiny Pharma | Meeting the Challenge of AMR: Resisting Resistance!

Anti-microbial resistance (AMR) is undoubtedly one of mankind’s greatest healthcare challenges. This is emphasised by the fact that this crisis is a main agenda item for the United Nations, World Health Organisation, G7 and G20. Lord O’Neill, chair of the UK Review on Antimicrobial Resistance, put the future in stark contrast in his 2016 report “Tackling drug-resistant infections globally” – if significant steps are not taken to address this issue, >10 million AMR attributable deaths per annum (more than currently caused by cancer) and a total cost to the global economy of $100 trillion by 2050 is predicted.

CEO Update | Wednesday 23 January 2019

I look forward to welcoming the BIA community to our Gala dinner tomorrow evening. It’s the biggest night of the year in the UK biosciences calendar, with close to 700 delegates from across the sector getting together for great food, networking and dancing. We’ll be joined on the night by several VIPs, including Simon Harriss who will speak on behalf of our Charity of the Year for 2019, Action Medical Research for children. Simon will tell us about his daughter Lily, who was diagnosed with the rare disease BPAN when she was just 5 years old. We will also be joined by the new Health Minister, Nicola Blackwood, as well as hearing from NHS England Chief Executive Simon Stevens.