• Overarching Political Issues

CEO Update | 27 June 2022

I was delighted to see the announcement from Moderna that it has chosen the UK to base its mRNA Innovation and Technology Centre and an additional mRNA manufacturing centre. Alongside other recent investments from the likes of Fujifilm and ThermoFisher, the UK is now superbly placed to ensure the next generation of therapeutics and vaccines are developed and manufactured for the globe right here within our world-class ecosystem.

Data saves lives: a new era for health data research?

The Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) has published a new strategy ‘Data Saves Lives: Reshaping Health and Social Care with Data’. It seeks to drive innovation and improve efficiency across the NHS, while resetting the relationship with the public on health data. Senior Policy and Public Affairs Manager, Dr Emma Lawrence, outlines what this means for the life science sector, including our growing TechBio community.

CEO Update | 30 May 2022

As we celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee it was great to see the King and Queen of Sweden visiting AstraZeneca in Cambridge last week. The visit provided the platform for the UK government to sign its first Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Sweden regarding life sciences. The MoU promises to lead to "enhancing cooperation between our governments and to galvanise our life sciences ecosystems in working together on our shared strengths and common priorities, covering fields from precision medicine, clinical trials, pandemic preparedness and antimicrobial resistance to sustainability, trade, and investment for the sector."

CEO Update | 9 May 2022

Congratulations to Omass Therapeutics for raising $100 million in the Series B financing round, as well as two BIA member companies - Scotland-based EnteroBiotix and Solvemed group, who were featured in Forbes ‘30 under 30 Europe’ Science and Healthcare Edition for 2022. We are also glad to see engineering biology receive £20.6 million in investment from UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). Read more on IP TRIPS Waiver, update on Northern Ireland and BBSRC Business and Academia Prosperity Partnership.

EuropaBio published policy recommendations for the healthcare and industrial biotechnology sectors

EuropaBio has published the National Associations Council Summit 2022 Event Report ''Biotechnology: Delivering Europe’s industrial strategy across the sectors''. The report includes key policy recommendations for healthcare and industrial biotechnology sectors at national and the EU level which could serve the policymakers to get a better understanding of the sector’s potential and regulatory challenges in operating on the national and EU level.

Making the Innovative Medicines Fund work for the most innovative new medicines

The ultimate aim of drug development is for patients to access lifesaving and life-enhancing new medicines, but for many of the most innovative new medicines, securing access for NHS patients is a long and difficult process. One of the most promising new areas of medicine is cell and gene therapies, which have potential to address complex diseases, including many rare diseases for which there are no effective treatments. However, these treatments face challenges in securing patient access because of high up-front cost and uncertainty about long-term outcomes.

CEO Update | 4 April 2022

On Thursday last week the Government announced a £15.9 million investment into Croda’s Staffordshire facility to increase the UK’s capacity of lipids, which are used to create lipid nanoparticles which are a crucial component of mRNA vaccines and therapies. Read more about Canary Wharf becoming life science hub, update from the Royal Society Science of COVID-19 conference, and our response to Biological Security Strategy and House of Lords Science and Technology committee on UK science and technology strategy.

CEO Update | 28 March 2022

Last week the Chancellor delivered his Spring Statement, where there were key wins for the sector following BIA campaigning. The Chancellor announced that R&D taking place abroad for ‘regulatory and legal reasons’ would still be eligible for R&D tax relief, and it was heartening to hear him mention clinical trials as an example. The Biomedical Catalyst (BMC) 2022 Round 1 has gone live today with its first round for 2022.

BIA analysis of the Spring Statement 2022

The Chancellor made his Spring Statement yesterday announcing a raft of changes across the tax system to address the current economic conditions for people and businesses in the UK. He laid out his vision to grow the economy with a focus on capital, people and ideas, and also provided a useful update on many important areas of tax policy for the life sciences and biotech sector.

Women In BioTech: Unlocking regional investment and the importance of diversity

“Women can punch the leadership weight and make a real difference in the sector. Here, we’re bringing different generations of women together to showcase that there’s already a fantastic contribution from women in life sciences.”