The University of Edinburgh has been selected as the lead academic partner in a multi-million-pound commercial collaboration to boost biotech innovation.
The FDB Centre of Excellence in Bioprocessing 2.0 is a collaboration between Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies (FDB), Scotland’s Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre (IBioIC), and the universities of Edinburgh, Manchester and York.
The five partners will work together on research to address challenges and opportunities in bioprocessing. FDB and the universities have committed an initial investment, some of which will directly fund a number of PhD and postdoctoral researchers over a five-year period.
The Centre will also seek match-funding from schemes that support industrial-academic collaborations.
Research matching commercial needs
Edinburgh was selected as the lead university after expertise in the College of Science & Engineering was shown to match FDB’s commercial bioprocessing research needs.
“This five-way collaboration will drive research innovation, ultimately leading to new therapies and treatments for patients. Edinburgh’s role reflects our leading research expertise, and it will enable us to boost advances in this important field.”
– Professor Dave Robertson, Head of the College of Science & Engineering.
Professor Susan Rosser, who has a joint professorship in Synthetic Biology across the Schools of Biological Sciences and Engineering, will coordinate the Edinburgh research contributing to the Centre of Excellence.
Selected from a number of UK universities that FDB has previously worked with, Edinburgh showed leading expertise in genome engineering, mammalian synthetic biology, microbial biotechnology, and informatics and data analysis.
New technologies and techniques
FDB aims to develop new capabilities in biological manufacturing, including automation and robotics, and novel technologies and techniques.
The commercial collaboration will directly fund a number of PhD and postdoctoral researchers over a five-year period, and will provide funding that can be matched by public-sector support for industrial-academic collaborations.
“Our role in the Centre of Excellence continues our record in successful collaborations with commercial partners. Research’s ultimate aim is to benefit society, and we look forward to helping drive innovation with such a prestigious player in the global biotech scene.”
– Dr George Baxter, Chief Executive Officer of Edinburgh Innovations
The FDB Centre of Excellence in Bioprocessing 2.0 was announced at the IBioIC annual conference at the Technology Innovation Centre in Glasgow. FDB is a partnership between multinational corporations Fujifilm and Mitsubishi.