National Horizons Centre to Provide ATMP and Vaccine Manufacture Training

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The UK's National Horizons Centre has been confirmed as a National Training Centre that will deliver on-site advanced therapies and vaccine manufacturing specific training.

The National Horizons Centre (NHC) in the United Kingdom has been confirmed as a National Training Centre that will deliver on-site advanced therapies and vaccine manufacturing specific practical and digital training.

NHC was announced as a preferred bidder in December 2020 to become one of the initial three centers to provide hands-on training for advanced therapy medicinal products (ATMPs) and vaccine manufacture as part of the Advanced Therapies Skills Training Network (ATSTN)—a UK-wide initiative. ATSTN has been awarded funding by the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy for the delivery of training centers across the UK that will help to develop practical skills and address the growing need in vaccine and ATMP manufacturing.

The on-site training being offered by NHC will be focused on good practice (GxP) manufacturing, process development, and bioprocessing techniques. In addition to hands-on training, NHC will also create a virtual reality (VR) training facility, which will include four VR stations alongside a tutor demonstration station. The VR facility will be used in conjunction with the NHC laboratory and teaching facilities to deliver the training courses.

“The UK cell and gene industry is a great place for people to build their future. We want to see that opportunity opened up to everyone,” said Matthew Durdy, CEO at Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult, in a March 31, 2021 press release. “With its cutting-edge training facilities, the [NHC] will be an integral part of the [ATSTN’s] unique offering to anyone in the UK who wants to advance their career in advanced therapies.”


“With the rush to develop and deliver a COVID-19 vaccine, the importance of the biomanufacturing and bioprocessing sectors has never been so apparent,” added Jen Vanderhoven, director of NHC, in the press release. “We’ve worked very closely with leading figures across the bioindustry sector to ensure that each of these courses will address the requisite technical and digital needs. We pride ourselves on our ability to be responsive to the sector’s needs, so we’re very pleased to have been able to react quickly and develop these courses, which will deliver vital skills needed for vaccine manufacturing and advanced therapies and to grow this important industry.”

The training courses will be available at NHC from May 2021. Courses will cover upstream and downstream bioprocessing, analytical techniques for bioprocessing, process control and automation, viral vector manufacturing, biologics manufacturing, data integrity, computer systems validation and IT compliance, good manufacturing practice for biologics, practical proteomics, and flow cytometry for bioprocessing.

Source: CGT Catapult