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Hundreds of high-quality jobs in bioprinted tissue therapeutics coming to B.C.

July 10, 2024 at 12:49 pm  BC, News, Politics, Provincial

A nearly $200-million partnership between Aspect Biosystems and the governments of B.C. and Canada will create more than 200 jobs and advance the development of cutting-edge bioprinted tissue therapeutics for people in B.C. and around the globe.  

“B.C. is home to the fastest-growing life sciences sector in Canada, as we support incredible opportunities for the private sector to invest in B.C. as a centre for innovation and cutting-edge technology,” said Brenda Bailey, B.C. Minister of Jobs, Economic Development and Innovation. “Helping B.C.-based life sciences and biomanufacturing companies like Aspect anchor and grow in our province is enhancing health-care outcomes for British Columbians and creating hundreds of new, high-paying, highly skilled jobs for people.”

Aspect Biosystems is a Vancouver-based biotech company pioneering the development of bioprinted tissue therapeutics to transform the treatment of disease. Bioprinted tissue therapeutics are implantable, cell-based therapies, which replace or repair biological functions in the body, such as sensing glucose and releasing insulin, that have been lost or damaged due to disease.

“Today’s investment in Aspect Biosystems strengthens Canada’s biotech sector, enhancing innovation and leadership in health care,” said François-Philippe Champagne, federal Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry. “It accelerates our transition from ideas to globally competitive products, while also bolstering our response to health emergencies, attracting international investments and creating high-quality jobs for Canadians. British Columbia’s impressive talent pool further fuels our innovation and leadership in the next generation of medicines.” 

Building on B.C.’s Life Sciences and Biomanufacturing Strategy, the Province is contributing approximately $23.8 million toward Aspect’s expansion in Vancouver. The Government of Canada is contributing $49 million toward the project, which has a total value of as much as $200 million.

“This significant investment from the governments of Canada and B.C. sends a strong signal of support for building and integrating the capabilities needed to discover, develop and clinically manufacture new medicines for people with serious diseases,” said Tamer Mohamed, chief executive officer, Aspect Biosystems. “This is a major step forward on our bold mission to pioneer an entirely new category of regenerative medicine and build an enduring and globally leading biotech that is delivering sustainable, life-changing impact to patients at home and around the world.”

The project will see Aspect establish clinical biomanufacturing capabilities, advance its made-in-B.C. technology platform and expand its therapeutic pipeline of bioprinted tissue therapeutics for serious metabolic and endocrine diseases, such as diabetes, obesity and liver disease. It is expected to create hundreds of highly skilled jobs in the B.C. life sciences and biomanufacturing sector, as well as lead to more training and development opportunities for post-secondary students.

“I’m excited to watch Aspect continue to grow in Vancouver and make our community its home,” said Joan Phillip, MLA for Vancouver-Mount Pleasant. “Aspect’s expansion will mean more jobs and health-care breakthroughs in our province helping improve life for people. It’s incredible to see this powerhouse of a sector continue to develop and drive innovation in B.C.”

The B.C. Life Sciences and Biomanufacturing Strategy outlines key actions developed in close consultation with industry and researchers to position British Columbia as a global hub for life sciences and biomanufacturing, and as a leading centre for commercial-scale biopharmaceutical and medical manufacturing.

Clean and Competitive: A Blueprint for B.C.’s Industrial Future lays out the Province’s work to drive new investment, create new jobs and seize new opportunities in growing clean energy and sustainable industries. Leveraging B.C.’s strengths to create good jobs and opportunities in every community will improve quality of life, while strengthening B.C.’s diverse economy today and for future generations.

Quick Facts:

  • Aspect employs more than 100 engineers, scientists and therapeutics developers, who have filed more than 100 patents.
  • In 2023, Aspect entered into a landmark $3.5-billion partnership with Novo Nordisk to develop bioprinted tissue therapeutics for diabetes and obesity.
  • There are more than 2,000 life sciences companies employing close to 20,000 people in the province.
  • B.C. has contributed more than $737 million in support across the five pillars of the BC Life Sciences and Biomanufacturing Strategy, leveraging more than $1.2 billion in federal funding and private investment.

Learn More:

To learn about Aspect Biosystems, visit: https://www.aspectbiosystems.com/

To learn about life sciences and biomanufacturing, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/governments/technology-innovation/life-sciences-biomanufacturing

To read the year one progress report outlining the actions taken to support the Life Sciences and Biomanufacturing Strategy, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/british-columbians-our-governments/initiatives-plans-strategies/technology-industry/life-sciences-biomanufacturing/bc-jedi_lsbm-2024progreport_web.pdf

To learn more about Clean and Competitive: A Blueprint for B.C.’s Industrial Future, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/Clean_and_Competitive.pdf

To learn more about the StrongerBC Economic Plan, visit: https://strongerbc.gov.bc.ca/economic-plan

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