Cell and gene therapies are produced from inherently variable living cells. As such, it is highly challenging to achieve consistent performance at different scales, which can lead to prolonged development times. In turn, this can significantly raise the cost of these therapies upon entry to the market.
The microfluidic cell culture technology being developed by MicrofluidX will provide manufacturers of cell and gene therapies with fine process control throughout development, ensuring consistent quality. The technology can be used to optimize cell characteristics and growth conditions early in development, before rapidly transitioning to large-scale manufacturing without the need to invest time in redesigning processes. Crucially, using microfluidics greatly reduces the consumption of expensive reagents, cutting down overall development costs. MicrofluidX recently closed an initial funding round raising £1.4 million for its microfluidic platform. The company is now working with CPI and CGT Catapult to secure further funding and validate its prototypes.
CPI has drawn from its experience in securing public funding to help MicrofluidX secure £500k of grant funding from Innovate UK for development of the microfluidic bioprocessing platform.
CGT Catapult will support MicrofluidX to implement, test and optimize the microfluidics platform, utilizing the technology and expertise at the CGT Catapult development center laboratories in London.
“We are excited to be working with CPI and the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult on the development of our innovative microfluidics platform. Our technology will cut the time and costs required to bring cell and gene therapies to market, improving access to these novel treatments,” Dr Antoine Espinet, founder and CEO of MicrofluidX, said.