The Biopharmaceutical Bioprocessing Technology Centre at Newcastle University offers a suite of mathematical and practical tools to improve bioprocesses - our strength lies with data & process analysis, scale-up and the application of chemical engineering principles.

The Centre won a £6M grant from EPSRC to run a Professional Doctorate programme. The programme places doctorate students on company projects, at the company’s site, at a subsidised cost to the company of only £8K per year. It is quite different from a conventional PhD in that the focus is the company project (or suite of projects), rather than blue-skies research.

The first two years of the course has seen EngD students engaged on projects within the following companies:

Industry Logos

Details of these projects may be found in the Student Profiles section.

The Centre also offers facilitated access to a range of other grants, including Innovation Vouchers and Knowledge Transfer Partnerships.

We welcome industry enquiries for R&D project sponsorship spanning biopharmaceuticals, pharmaceuticals, biomass transformation, renewable chemicals, regenerative medicine and fast-moving consumer goods.

Please contact Prof Gary Montague
Telephone +44-(0)-191-208-7265

The pharmaceutical sector is a UK success story and the North East region is a major hub of activity but there is increasing international competition both in the manufacture of generic products and growth in development capability from the emerging economies of India and Asia.

Currently the UK is responsible for 40% of the drugs in the pipeline for Europe and 45% of drugs in late stage trials in Europe. Around 30% of pharmaceutical drugs in development in the UK are from a biological production route. This is a consequence of significant UK R&D investment - 25% of the UK R&D spend is by the pharmaceutical sector which amounts to £7.4 Billion each year

It is recognised that the biological route for pharmaceutical manufacture offers greater chances of success, and investment in expanding the bio-based pharmaceutical portfolio is being undertaken (2007 GSK Annual Report). However, in their annual review, the Knowledge Transfer Network bioProcess UK observed that although UK industry is second in the world, between 2005 and 2007 its market share has fallen from 11.4% to 9.2% in the face of the growth of competition. UK companies continue to be ambitious (e.g. GSK seeks to triple pipeline products by 2015), but their plans are reliant on hiring and retaining an appropriately skilled workforce.

A fundamental requirement in supporting the sector against fierce competition is the availability of appropriate skills in an industry where a skills lead is a strategy for success.

The BBTC offers a number of opportunities for industry:

+ EngD Collaborations
+ A hub offering knowledge and skills transfer
+ The opportunity to guide research


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