Novo Nordisk Foundation invests $135m to build cell therapy plant

The Novo Nordisk Foundation said the $135 million facility will fill a critical gap in the Danish cell therapy space.

Millie Nelson, Editor

September 25, 2023

2 Min Read
Novo Nordisk Foundation invests $135m to build cell therapy plant

The Novo Nordisk Foundation said the facility will fill a critical gap in the Danish cell therapy space.

The Novo Nordisk Foundation – the charitable arm of Danish drug maker Novo Nordisk – said the DKK 950 million ($135 million) investment will create a facility in Lyngby, Denmark for the final advancement steps and upscaling of cell therapies for testing in humans.

The plant is expected to be operational in 2027 and aims to create breakthroughs in cell therapy research for people with diseases such as Parkinsons, chronic heart failure, different types of cancer, kidney disease, and Type 1 diabetes.



The foundation claims the unit, named the Cellerator, will “fill a critical gap in the Danish cell therapy ecosystem.”   Additionally, it will further develop cell therapies that have already been tested in animals by producingthese at scale for early clinical trials.

“Cell therapies have the potential to take us from treating or managing the symptoms of chronic diseases to treating the disease itself, or even curing it with a one-off procedure,” says Thomas Carlsen, CEO of the Novo Nordisk Foundation Cellerator.

“We’ve seen major advances in the laboratory in recent years, but many promising cell therapy candidates face difficulties reaching clinical trials, partly because we can’t currently develop cell therapy products in large, consistent quantities here in Denmark. I’m thrilled to be heading an initiative that will change this and provide hope to people living with chronic diseases.”

Wide range of therapies

The facility will be located at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) in Lyngby and will serve the public and private sector, local and global companies, as well as academia and the pharmaceutical industry. Additionally, the Lyngby plant will support various cell therapy types, including embryonic stem cells, adult stem cells, and induced pluripotent stem cells (iSPCs).

The facility has been designed to be flexible so it can be adapted to changing demands in a rapidly evolving space.

Also partaking in the venture is reNEW, the Novo Nordisk Foundation center for stem-cell research, which is a partnership between the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Australia, and Leiden University Medical Center, The Netherlands.

In January 2022, reNEW said it would invest up to $343 million over a ten-year period to establish an international research center focused on stem cell medicine.

About the Author(s)

Millie Nelson

Editor, BioProcess Insider

Journalist covering global biopharmaceutical manufacturing and processing news and host of the Voices of Biotech podcast.

I am currently living and working in London but I grew up in Lincolnshire (UK) and studied in Newcastle (UK).

Got a story? Feel free to email me at [email protected]

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