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Cincinnati Children’s to boost trials capacity with new cell therapy centre

Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center in the US has announced plans to expand its clinical trials capacity by establishing the Applied Gene and Cell Therapy Center.

The new centre marks a significant step towards enhancing the institution’s clinical trials for new drugs and biological therapies for cancer, blood diseases or genetic disorders.

Cincinnati Children’s will initially fund approximately $60m in the Applied Gene and Cell Therapy Center, covering design, construction, and equipment costs.

The facility spans 111,000ft² on a 14.6-acre site.

It will share the premises with a supply chain distribution hub, which will support Cincinnati Children’s three hospitals and more than 40 other locations.

Building on the foundation laid by the Cincinnati Children’s Translational Core Laboratory, which has been at the forefront of early-phase clinical trials for over 15 years, the new centre is poised to further the development, testing, and manufacturing of new drugs and biologics.

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The centre is expected to employ approximately 100 Cincinnati Children’s staff members, including the recruitment of 24 new personnel.

The focus will be on preparing gene, cell, and immunotherapy products for trials, with half of the new roles being scientists, including biologists and quality assurance experts in current good manufacturing practice (cGMP).

Support staff roles will also be created, encompassing regulatory and physical operations positions.

The exact number of employees and vendors dedicated to the distribution hub is yet to be finalised.

Renovation activities to establish the centre are scheduled to start next month, with completion expected by the third quarter of 2025.

The transition of employees to the new space is planned for late 2025.

Danis Construction Building is serving as the project design builder.

Cincinnati Children’s president and CEO Steve Davis said: “We are deeply invested in paediatric research that focuses on gene and cell therapy, which benefits children and families in our region and around the world.

“The Applied Gene and Cell Therapy Center will expand on the research efforts that have already earned our health system recognition by Fortune as one of America’s Most Innovative Companies, and which also contributed to US News & World Report ranking Cincinnati Children’s as No. 1 in the nation for paediatric cancer care.”

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