On Wednesday, February 7, 2024, Professor Sakis Mantalaris, a prominent researcher in the field of cell therapy, received a grant of €4.88 million from the Science Foundation Ireland Research Professorship Programme.

This funding is in connection with his jointly-appointed role at Trinity College Dublin and The National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT), and enables him and his research team across both institutions to lead an innovative project aimed at improving the manufacture of cell therapies and potentially their clinical outcomes.

The variability in cell quality, type and the manufacturing process creates a large amount of unpredictability of the final product. To mitigate this Professor Mantalaris proposes a platform that will be created to characterise and direct cellular heterogeneity through the control of metabolism throughout biomanufacturing, in order to deliver improved clinical outcomes.

The work of Professor Mantalaris, in collaboration with Professor Nicki Panoskaltsis, is interdisciplinary in nature, ranging from fundamental science to biomanufacturing engineering science resulting in future clinical translation. The work will expand Ireland’s cell and gene therapy ecosystem and will be underpinned by co-location across Trinity Translational Medicine Institute (TTMI), NIBRT, and St James’s Hospital.

Furthermore, Professor Mantalaris plans to introduce a new Masters programme in Advanced Precision Therapeutics & Biomanufacturing, in collaboration with NIBRT, St James’s Hospital, and The Irish Blood Transfusion Service, to be delivered at Trinity College.