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Nationwide Children’s Spinoff Andelyn Biosciences to Open New Lab in Dublin

Taijuan Moorman Taijuan Moorman Nationwide Children’s Spinoff Andelyn Biosciences to Open New Lab in DublinThe Andelyn Development Center in Dublin. Photo by Susan Post.
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Andelyn Biosciences has set its sights on Dublin for one of two new labs for the gene therapy company.

In the budding biotech industry, gene therapy is a medical field in which genetic modification of cells is used to treat disease in an individual by introducing repaired or reconstructed genetic material.

Genes are introduced into an individual via a viral vector called adeno-associated virus, which is harmless and carries the payload, or the DNA within the virus into the cells in the body.

Andelyn—a portmanteau after two children who were a part of some gene therapy milestones in the U.S.—grew out of a core facility at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. The company has grown quickly since off-shooting, with Andelyn clients now existing across the country and around the globe.

Andelyn has increased its workforce by about a third just this year, with expectations of doubling or tripling some teams in the next year or two.

Andelyn’s growth, as well as an increase in production, has led them to the construction of a new lab in Dublin.

The new lab will make room for additional workspace and “our ability to manufacture more quality, preclinical and clinical products,” said Dr. Heidi Coia, one of Andelyn’s lead scientists and a project manager in the viral vector core.

A rendering of the Andelyn Development Center. Image courtesy of Adelyn Biosciences.

Andelyn is also building a commercial facility in The Ohio State University’s Innovation District, while the Dublin lab will house all of its preclinical and development services under one roof. The move will consolidate Andelyn’s operations from four different facilities to two.

Being in Dublin gives Andelyn employees the opportunity to have a quieter commute, and other beneficial amenities such as Dublin’s growing restaurant scene.

“We look forward to being in a kind of a town like Dublin because of what it offers, the kind of life that people maybe want to move or commute to,” said Dr. Laura Kerepesi another lead scientist and associate director of the viral vector core.

Like many industries right now, the gene therapy industry is currently experiencing a talent shortage. And Andelyn is no exception.

The company has broadened its searches out of the region and even out of the state to the entire country. They have also increased their presence on job boards and at job fairs.

“But it’s definitely been a challenge to try to find [employees] because everybody’s basically vying for the same people,” said Kerepesi. “There’s multiple gene therapy companies within Columbus, and we’re all trying to hire the same people and so it is quite competitive.”

“And we’ve been working with some universities too to start like developing these programs for gene therapy,” said Dr. Kristin Heller, yet another one of Andelyn’s lead scientists who runs their plasmid manufacturing facility.

The company has worked with colleges and universities like Columbus State Community College and OSU to help increase future talent pools, said Heller. “We’re new to the field, so there’s not a lot of focus [on gene therapy]. So the talent is a little bit more broad,” she explained.

Despite that challenge, the plan for Andelyn is to continue the growth they’re experiencing.

“We hope that by building these centers that we can, over the next two to three years, double or triple our capacity to manufacture viral vectors for our clients,” said Kerepesi.

For more information on Andelyn Biosciences, visit andelynbio.com.

Our technology series is presented by our partners in the City of Dublin.

Dublin is a city of more than 47,000 residents located just northwest of Columbus, Ohio. The City of Dublin Economic Development team has a vision to make Dublin a Midwest IT Magnet through business leadership and sustainable workforce development. This commitment goes beyond short-term skills training to include long-term strategic and cultural support for the entire Dublin business community. Dublin is one of America’s Top 20 Creative Class Cities and is home to more than 20 corporate headquarters, an entrepreneurial center, 3,000+ businesses, world-class events and the urban, walkable Bridge Street District.

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