Testa Center and the Faculty of Pharmacy take bioscience to the next level
At Testa Center, researchers and teachers at the Faculty of Pharmacy have access high-quality laboratory environments. Here they meet the infrastructure and expertise required to take their innovations and students to new heights.
Testa Center, inaugurated in the autumn of 2018, is a test-bed for education, innovation and proof-of-concept located at Cytiva's site in Uppsala. In an open pilot-scale facility, scaling up of biological processes is performed, which provides the opportunity to try the potential of new ideas at an early stage, thus reducing the risks along the way to the finished product.
“Researchers and teachers at Uppsala University have access to Testa Center's facilities and expertise for a total of 25 weeks per year. It offers state-of-the-art equipment and the opportunity to build networks outside the academy that we cannot provide in the University's own environments. More and more people are discovering the added values, we receive many interesting proposals and the occupancy is steadily increasing,” says Göran Alderborn, Professor of Pharmaceutical Technology and Project manager for the Faculty of Pharmacy's operations at the Testa Center.
The agreement with Cytiva also allows Uppsala University to conduct education at the Testa Center. Erik Jacobsson, the Faculty of Pharmacy's coordinator for activities at the center, has assisted several teachers in giving their students the opportunity to visit the environment. In the spring of 2021, he is once more at the Center with an introductory course in chromatography.
“We have been conducting training at Testa Center for two years now. The course in chromatography is a recurring collaboration with Cytiva, where their employees lead both lectures and laboratory sessions. In addition, each visit includes a guided tour through their high-tech environments - even though they currently have to be performed digitally, and the students are consistently very positive,” says Erik Jacobsson.
Opening the Testa Center for practical training and in-depth laboratory experiments is central to ensuring future competence in Swedish biological processes. Here, students interact with technical expertise and gain significant experience of industrial processes. For Uppsala University it will provide opportunities to develop new programmes focusing on large-scale production of biological medical products.
“My primary drivers are curiosity, research and understanding how biological systems work, which makes the Testa Center a perfect environment. Here, students, entrepreneurs, researchers and companies meet to build value in new, exciting innovations and to shorten the distance to commercialisation and benefit society. Here, nothing is impossible,” says Jesper Hedberg, Director at Testa Center.
Sara Mangsbo, Associate Senior Lecturer and research director in immuno-oncology, is one of the many researchers who have developed their ideas at the Testa Center. Here, together with her team, she has gradually scaled up the production of a protein from a stable cell line, developed in collaboration with SciLifeLab's Drug Discovery and Delivery platform.
“Our time at Testa Center has been important to us. Moving in the borderlands between research, industry and production is very valuable and has increased our understanding of what works and what does not. I have always thought that collaboration is the straightest way forward, and that perspective characterises both SciLifeLab and Testa Center who have provided invaluable support,” says Sara Mangsbo.
All researchers and teachers at Uppsala University that want to conduct work or training at the Testa Center are welcome to contact Erik Jacobsson or Margareta Krabbe to present their ideas.
“The first step is a joint meeting with Jesper Hedberg at the Testa Center for a discussion on how we can develop your proposal. We can also arrange visits for you and your team in their laboratory environment. The demand is great, so we recommend all to be out in good time, but the center's representatives are accommodating and most things can be solved,” says Erik Jacobsson.
- Testa center is Sweden's test bed and innovation center in bioprocess technology for researchers, students and companies who want to test and scale up innovations in the production of biological drugs.
- At Testa Center, Uppsala University offers students training in bioprocess and drug development In parallel the university's researchers have access to the Testa Center and its modern equipment in the biotechnological process industry.
- The introductory course in Chromatography is conducted within the course Biologicals 2020/2021 (7.5 credits)
WEBINAR FROM TESTA CENTER
Department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences
Biology Education Centre
text: Magnus Alsne, photo: Testa Center
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