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Vaccine centre announces first industry partnership

Image: Vaccines Manufacturing and Innovation Centre

Government-backed centre and Oxford Biomedica aim to ‘quickly produce Covid-19 vaccines in large volumes’

The UK’s planned Vaccines Manufacturing and Innovation Centre has signed its first industry partnership agreement.

The partnership, with gene and cell therapy group Oxford Biomedica, is designed to “quickly produce vaccines in large volumes” once a viable Covid-19 vaccine is found, UK Research and Innovation, which is helping to fund the centre, announced on 9 June.

As part of the agreement, the centre will procure specialist manufacturing equipment for two new manufacturing sites. This equipment will be housed in Oxford Biomedica’s commercial manufacturing centre in Oxford. The company will also provide training and technical assistance to the Vaccines Manufacturing and Innovation Centre’s staff.

The announcement comes after the UK government invested £93 million to ensure that the centre—located at the Harwell campus in Oxfordshire—can open in July 2021, a year ahead of schedule.

The funding is part of an overall investment of £215m to help develop and manufacture a vaccine against the coronavirus.