Specialist manufacturing in Scotland is diverse and comprises both dedicated contract manufacturers offering a full range of services, and niche players offering specialty services. The sector can be broken down further into those that provide essential supplies for the bio-manufacturing process and those who provide end product.
Specialist manufacturing involves the manufacture of therapeutic drugs using either: cell-based processes such as those that require biological “host” cells for the production of recombinant protein; or chemical synthesis which does not use live biological cells to produce drugs in powder or tablet form for disease specific targets.
Scotland’s success in developing this sector is also helped by a general strategy to focus on manufacturing materials specifically for clinical trials and not for large scale commercial manufacture.
Scotland’s strengths in specialist manufacturing
Scotland is continuing to grow its specialist manufacturing industry and capitalising on its position as one of the best destinations in the world to undertake this work.
Scotland’s key strengths in specialist manufacturing:
- Established presence of biopharmaceutical companies
- Internationally recognised bioprocessing research centres (Heriot Watt & Strathclyde Universities)
- Diverse, supportive community
- Two of the world’s top five cell culture manufacturers are located in Scotland
- Biocampus - Scotland’s dedicated national bio-manufacturing centre
Working in medical technologies in Scotland
This bio-manufacturing sector in Scotland, employs some 4,000 people, has attracted some significant local and global players.
Specialist manufacturing employers in Scotland include:
- Life Technologies
- Sigma Aldrich
- Alba Bioscience
- Millipore Ltd
Find more about Scotland's life sciences companies
View the latest job opportunities in life sciences in Scotland
Education and research in specialist manufacturing
Scotland is also home to world-class research expertise, particularly those involved in applied bioprocessing-related research, including:
- The Heriot Watt University Bio manufacturing Research Centre
- The Fermentation Centre at Strathclyde University
View more information on academic departments and research institutes in Scotland