New course aims to boost disease prevention manufacturing skills
18 Jan 2022
Edinburgh Napier University School of Applied Sciences is launching a course designed to address demand for essential manufacturing skills for disease prevention.
The short course, designed in tandem with Charles River Laboratories, provides students with key skills for working in the Advanced Therapies sector, interest in which has grown hugely since the onset of the Covid pandemic.
Associate professor in the School of Applied Sciences, Dr Claire Garden, said:
“Advanced Therapies offer enormous potential and promise to protect our society from current and future diseases, but when the UK government conducted research with companies in 2019, 83% were concerned about their ability to capitalise on emerging opportunities because skills anticipated to be essential were – at that time – missing.
“With our industry skills focus and partnership with key employers, recognised in our recent reaccreditation by the Royal Society of Biology, we have the track record to bring this training to a wide audience.”
Edinburgh Napier is the only university in Scotland to be a member of the UK’s Advanced Therapies Skills Training Network (ATSTN), launched in 2020 and operating through two sites in England and one in Scotland. Founded in the US, Charles River Laboratories is a global pharmaceutical company with UK sites in Scotland and England.
The five day bespoke course, to be launched on 24 January at Napier’s Sighthill campus and Charles River Laboratories’ facilities, focuses on good laboratory practice, supplying participants with theoretical knowledge, including sterile manufacturing and the development and production of Advanced Therapies and practical skills.
The School of Applied Sciences partners with RoslinCT, SULSA (the Scottish Universities Life Sciences Alliance), the Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre, and Ayrshire College.
General manager of Charles River Edinburgh, Geoff Burns, commented: “This course will help ensure the scientists of the future are well-equipped for a career in the emerging industries of advanced therapies and vaccine manufacturing. ”
He said that "many exciting breakthroughs" could be made for the long-term management and even cure of disease.
Nathan Barnett, programme coordinator at SULSA, added: “This course is an exciting addition to the Advanced Therapies Skills Training Network in Scotland. It will give industry insight into some of the careers available in the fast-growing advanced therapies sector and provide practical skills relevant to roles in the industry.”