Scientists move into biotechnology centre
Process development technologist Rosaline Scott at work in the new CPI laboratories
Scientists at the Wilton Centre have started work in new laboratories, using enzymes to find more cost-effective and environmentally-friendly ways to make chemicals and pharmaceuticals.
The opening of the development laboratories at the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) is the first stage in a multi-million pound plan to bring competitive and sustainable technology to Britain’s chemicals industry.
By the end of the year, a larger-scale production facility will come on line, completing the planned scaleup and demonstration capability in fermentation and enzyme technology.
The facilities will form the National Industrial Biotechnology Facility (NIBF), which is being built following investment by regional development agency One NorthEast and The Northern Way programme.
NIBF is also partnered with the CoEBio3, a world-class Centre of Excellence for biocatalysis at the University of Manchester.
Working with a wide range of customers, NIBF will help develop enzymes and demonstrate their effectiveness and commercial viability.
It is forecast that in the next 10 years, new sustainable and renewable processes involving enzymes will be used in 20% of chemicals and pharmaceuticals production.
CPI’s Director of Advanced Processing Chris Dowle said: “It’s great to see our new facilities taking shape. We can now get on with helping others to deliver advancements in this vital field. We aim to place the UK at the forefront of new developments.”