Launch of Berlin Center for Gene and Cell Therapies in the Capital

Bayer AG and Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin Unveil Plans for Berlin Center Advancing Gene and Cell Therapies

Today, Bayer AG and Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin announced their joint initiative to establish the Berlin Center for Gene and Cell Therapies, bolstered by significant funding from Germany’s Federal Government and the State of Berlin. The project aims to expedite the delivery of pioneering technologies to patients while fostering a leading biotech ecosystem in Berlin.

Cell and gene therapies hold immense promise, targeting diseases at genetic and cellular levels where conventional treatments have fallen short. To accelerate the translation of research into clinical benefits, Charité and Bayer will establish the center at Bayer’s Berlin Nordhafen campus. It will feature an incubator with state-of-the-art laboratories and a Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP)-certified production facility. This incubator will support startups advancing innovative therapies, offering guidance on regulatory compliance, clinical trials, patent strategies, and business development.

The Berlin Center for Gene and Cell Therapies aims to integrate research, development, and manufacturing of these advanced therapies within Berlin’s vibrant biomedical ecosystem. The project is supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the State of Berlin, with construction slated to commence in 2025.

Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz emphasized the collaborative nature of the initiative, highlighting its potential to propel Germany as a hub for cutting-edge medical technologies. Federal Minister of Education and Research Bettina Stark-Watzinger underscored the center’s role in accelerating the translation of scientific breakthroughs into medical practice, supported by an €80 million investment.

The center’s unique partnership between Charité and Bayer aims to position Berlin at the forefront of global biomedical innovation. It represents a strategic alliance to address complex medical challenges and drive economic growth through job creation and international investment.

Designed by HENN, the center spans 18,000 sqm on ten floors, featuring space for up to 20 startups and a GMP-certified facility for clinical phase II development. It aims to bridge the gap between research and market-ready therapies, particularly in treating cancer, autoimmune diseases, and rare genetic conditions.

Cell and gene therapies, categorized as Advanced Therapy Medicinal Products (ATMPs), offer personalized treatment options tailored to individual patients, marking a transformative shift in healthcare. Despite ongoing clinical studies, few such therapies are currently approved in Europe, underscoring the center’s pivotal role in advancing regulatory and clinical pathways.

Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, renowned for its integrated approach to research, patient care, and education, will co-own and operate the center with Bayer, further enhancing Berlin’s reputation as a global hub for medical innovation.

The Berlin Center for Gene and Cell Therapies represents a visionary leap towards reshaping the future of medicine, guided by collaborative efforts across academia, industry, and government to deliver innovative therapies and improve patient outcomes.

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