About us - PM Group
Our team are pleased to be volunteering as part of a cross-sector group of over 40 experts supporting IChemE’s COVID-19 Response Team. The Team includes other engineering companies, equipment suppliers and consultants.
The Team highlighted vaccine capacity considerations in response to the UK Government’s launch of the UK Vaccine Taskforce.
“Chemical engineers can offer guidance on approaches as part of the wider engineering community for rapid expansion of existing capacity and new builds if required. Since we have worked in this sector, we also understand the regulatory and quality of requirements needed to ensure the production of a treatment that is GMP-compliant and safe for patients,” said Adam Hawthorne, IChemE/ISPE COVID-19 Volunteer speaking to TCE (The Chemical Engineer).
“The challenges of manufacturing at scale are dependent on the platform chosen. Also, on dose form which could be a viral vector in a syringe or a freeze-dried protein product. These require different manufacturing approaches, and therefore the number of unit operations and steps all need to be scaled up. Each of these will have different supply chain and facility requirements,” Adam continued.
The IChemE COVID-19 Response Team will carry out high level gap analysis and assess vaccine capacity considerations. The independent study will include global supply and will be shared internationally via IChemE. The study will be supplied to the BIA (BioIndustry Association) who are one of the members of the UK Government’s COVID-19 Vaccine Taskforce.
“We have already established links with the BIA and have begun to help with identifying capacity for biomanufacturing and diagnostics together with our partners at the International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering (ISPE),” said Adam Hawthorne in TCE.
From PM Group, Adam Hawthorne, Process Engineer and Javier Lozano, Head of Process Engineering UK are supporting the IChemE initiative.
Do you have a query about vaccines? Speak to our UK team.
The Government taskforce is led by Chief Scientific Adviser Sir Patrick Vallance and Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Jonathan van Tam. It is made up of industry and Government representatives as well as the The Wellcome Trust, BIA and AstraZeneca. Their goal is to rapidly co-ordinate research to develop a vaccine, identify how quickly it could be manufactured and accelerate its delivery.