School of Engineering

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10 years of our Biopharmaceutical Bioprocessing Technology Centre

In the week that we announced our role in six Doctoral Training Centres funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) we also celebrate 10 years since we established our first EPSRC DTC.

The Biopharmaceutical Bioprocessing Technology Centre (BBTC) comes to an end in March. To celebrate the achievements and impact of our process development and biotechnology research, the BBTC is running a networking, research and impact showcase on 28 February at the Great North Museum - Hancock.

Transforming process design

The aim of the BBTC was to transform process design, and especially bioprocess design, through novel application of analytical tools and techniques. Process Analytical Technology (PAT) and Quality by Design (QbD) has been at the heart of the Centre's strategy.

Over the past 10 years the BBTC has trained a new generation of doctoral graduates (EngD) with competencies in all stages of commercial biopharmaceutical process development.

The BBTC built on the University's leading research in biological and engineering sciences aligned to the biopharmaceutical sector. Research projects have spanned the distinct scientific disciplines of biology, chemistry and engineering. The Chemical Engineering foundation to the BBTC included bioprocessing, data analysis, process modeling, process control and process intensification. Engineering was complemented by Chemistry and Biology expertise from the University's School of Natural & Environmental Sciences. And biotechnology, bioinformatics and regenerative medicine expertise from the Faculty of Medical Sciences

Studying with the BBTC involved rigorous academic endeavour and students also spent a large part of their time with a commercial partner. 34 companies ranging from large multinationals to SMEs and start-ups, from industry sectors such as biopharma, manufacturing, instrumentation and software have supported the BBTC. Students gained invaluable industrial experience and our partner companies enjoyed direct access to the University's research expertise

Our students delivered significant technological advances to the UK biopharmaceutical and processing industry.

  • helping to improve processes and increase product quality
  • influencing technical standards and protocols in the industry
  • impacting business performance leading to financial benefits
  • having an impact on the environment or society by reducing pollution and making products more affordable

Throughout the life of the BBTC, the approach to research and development has been the same:

understand - measure - model - interpret - adapt

Join us on 28 February to see the impact of this approach. There will be time to network. And a celebration of the achievements and contributions of the BBTC.

published on: 8 February 2019