The center will be led and funded by Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies (FDB), a contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO), in partnership with the University of Edinburgh, University of Manchester, and University of York.
“The UK’s strong science base in biopharmaceuticals and industrial biotechnology provides many groups who can support and augment our in-house innovation efforts, however spreading support across many universities does not allow more valuable, deeper relationships to develop or for FDB to negotiate favourable terms,” Liza Rivera, director of global marketing at Fujifilm, told us.
She further explained, “Therefore we have decided to partner with fewer selected universities with whom we have an established successful track record, to develop a 5-year Strategic Partnership Program to further develop our capabilities in bioprocessing.”
According to a statement, the company has been working to support research in the UK for a long time and this center for excellence enables the company to develop long-term partnerships with universities to support its business.
Jen Vanderhoven, vice president of global business change at FDB, said that the aim of the center of excellence is to “link fundamental research and world class expertise to the business needs of Fujifilm.”
Vanderhoven added, “We are creating an innovation engine that drives new processes, efficiencies, products, and services.”
The center is based across all of the partners’ sites, with R&D work taking place in the laboratories of the universities involved and at the FDB site in the UK.
The FDB center of excellence in bioprocessing 2.0 will be an extension of Fujifilm’s global innovation initiatives.
Rivera told us that these initiatives include three innovation themes that have been developed: dry science using automation, robotics and predictive technologies to reduce the amount of wet, bench science.
Additionally, the framework includes a manufacturing 2.0 initiative to develop next generation manufacturing and testing technologies for more flexible and automated facilities.