The Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult (CGT Catapult) today announced a partnership with Freeline Therapeutics, a global biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of adeno-associated virus (AAV) based gene therapies, to further develop the company’s proprietary manufacturing platform at the CGT Catapult’s large scale GMP manufacturing centre in Stevenage, Hertfordshire, UK.
Freeline’s technology uses engineered adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors for the treatment of bleeding and other debilitating disorders. Freeline will deploy their proprietary manufacturing platform for production of clinical supply in one of the CGT Catapult’s newly built manufacturing centre modules.
"We are delighted to establish this collaboration with Catapult as we seek to deliver our ambition to establish a global leadership position with a ‘next generation’ AAV gene therapy platform. Ensuring rapid and secure manufacture of clinical supplies using cutting-edge manufacturing technologies has been an important focus for us since Day One as we have sought to build an agile business of industrial scale and quality. Establishing this capability at the Catapult Manufacturing Centre enables us to meet this aim and to drive our growing pipeline forward. The recently confirmed grant from Innovate UK in support of this collaboration has been instrumental to expedite this important partnership."
Jan Thirkettle, Chief Development Officer, Freeline Therapeutics
"This is an excellent opportunity for the CGT Catapult to collaborate on the frontier of manufacturing technology. Our world-leading GMP standard manufacturing facility represents an ideal environment for Freeline to further develop its AAV-based platform, for use in one of the most promising areas of gene therapy research. We are delighted to welcome the company to the site."
Keith Thompson, Chief Executive Officer, Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult
The manufacturing centre, scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2018, will provide the UK with the manufacturing facilities needed for large scale cell and gene therapy clinical studies and commercialisation, in line with Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) standards. Its innovative business model allows the development of new manufacturing processes in a collaborative environment. The centre features a series of large clean room modules and is designed to enable companies to accelerate and scale manufacturing of these innovative products and collaborate on the new technologies needed in manufacture and supply to take treatments from the factory to the clinic. In 2017, the centre received a £12 million award from the UK Government’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, significantly increasing its capacity.