× Medicines Discovery Catapult

We’re providing updates on the COVID-19 situation for the UK drug discovery community. Our aim is to help the community during this challenging time and also highlight important work and resources.


MDC update

COVID-19 Risk Assessment

COVID-19 risk assessments have been performed under the instruction of MDC’s Health and Safety team. MDC can confirm full compliance with Government guidance on managing the risks and reducing transmission of COVID-19.

Where possible, MDC have implemented measures to allow employees to maintain 2 metre distancing.

Where social distancing is not possible, MDC have established control measures and are minimising the number of people working together at one time.

Facilities for regular hand washing are in place, underpinned by enhanced cleaning regimes for the workspaces.

MDC has issued safety updates and guidance to those who have remained working within the facilities as key workers throughout lockdown.

All employees now returning to the workplace will receive detailed training and guidance, and MDC will maintain a work from home policy for those who are able to do so.

MDC will regularly monitor and internally communicate it’s COVID-19 management controls to ensure it remains COVID-19 secure.

View our COVID-19 Secure certificate >


UK Lighthouse Labs launched: Medicines Discovery Catapult, in partnership with industry and academia, advancing COVID-19 testing capacity

Visit the UK Lighthouse Labs Network website >


Support from across the community

“We are delighted to see that Alderley Park has been designated as a national testing centre. This will allow the University of Manchester to build on our already strong partnership with Alderley Park to deliver fast and effective testing, as part of our wider contribution to tackling Covid-19.”

Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell, FRS, FRSB, FMedSci,  President & Vice-Chancellor, Professor of Physiology, University of Manchester

“The life sciences sector across the North of England is working hard to combat COVID-19 with new tests, treatments and vaccines already under development. The regional COVID-19 testing centre at Alderley Park coordinated by the Medicines Discovery Catapult represents an essential step forward in scaling up the UK’s coordinated national ability to track and combat this disease. Bionow members have come forward in their droves to support this initiative and will be central partners in delivering it successfully.”

Dr John Stageman OBE, Chairman of Bionow & LifeArc

“Manchester Metropolitan University is proud to be supporting this national and regional effort to provide key expertise to the formation of the North West COVID-19 screening facility. Through partnerships across the North West, together I am sure we can support the national effort to help to combat the pandemic.”

Professor Steve Decent, Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Manchester Metropolitan University

“The University of Manchester in concert with other North West Universities strongly believes that the most efficient and safe way to achieve test capacity increase is to support with equipment, consumables and most importantly volunteer staff, the establishment of a single high throughput facility for COVID-19 testing for the North West of England. The Alderley Park Facility will allow us to rapidly and safely ramp up test capacity. As the World Health Organisation Head Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has stated the key message must be: test, test, test.”

Professor Paul Klapper, Clinical Virology, University of Manchester

“Alderley Park is an outstanding facility for Life Science work, it has top quality, large scale, laboratory facilities, a great management team, access to high quality talent and a connected location.  In the current crisis it makes absolute sense for these facilities to be used immediately as a hub for testing, and as a home for future diagnostic work both for the private and  public sector.”

Chris Brinsmead CBE (ex Co-Chair of the Alderley Park task force)