The global automated cell culture market size was valued at USD 1,856 million in 2022. It is estimated to reach USD 5,747 million by 2031, growing at a CAGR of 13.38% during the forecast period (2023–2031).
Automated cell culture is a process in which the growth and maintenance of cell culture are taken with advanced techniques. Cell culture removes the cells from the source to grow under the specified technical environment outside the natural environment. Traditionally, cell culture has been a manual process that requires many hours of repetitive, detailed work to maintain absolute sterility.
Automating the steps involved in cell culture has several advantages, such as reducing time and saving labor costs. Automation ensures consistency of the procedure and provides sterility that even the best technicians cannot attain. Automated cell culture systems are easy to operate and capable of handling large volumes of culture as scale-up is quicker with automated systems.
Automated liquid handling systems are multifunctional devices made for the sampling, combining, and mixing liquid samples in laboratories. These systems help eliminate errors and sample contamination and reduce the manual work of lab technicians by performing multiple laboratory tasks. In addition, liquid handling plays a vital role in many experiments related to life science, particularly in genomic and proteomic research. Moreover, key market players are developing compact and user-friendly liquid-handling workstations that can operate in small-and mid-level laboratories. For instance, in February 2018, Tecan Group Limited introduced the Fluent Gx automation workstation designed to meet the stringent needs of clinical and regulated laboratories.
Furthermore, the rising demand for early detection of diseases and growing demand for treatment of various chronic and life-threatening illnesses is driving the adoption of automated liquid handling systems by diagnostic centers and hospitals. Thus, the rise in the adoption of liquid handling systems across small- to large-scale research laboratories for various sample handling requirements is expected to propel the expansion of this market during the forecast period.
The development of newer, more potent medications is necessary due to the increased incidence of cancer and other chronic diseases. Global society was significantly impacted by cancer. For instance, 1,735,350 new cases of cancer were reported in the US in 2018, according to the National Cancer Institute. Also, the World Health Organization (WHO) says that about 3.7 million new cancer cases are found annually in Europe.
In addition, according to the National Institute of Cancer Prevention and Research (NICPR), in 2018, the estimated number of people diagnosed with cancer was around 2.25 million in India. This rise in cancer and other chronic disorders, such as HIV, tuberculosis, etc., drives market growth as automated cell culture helps understand the mechanism and cause of these diseases. Additionally, automated cell culture helps in the research and development of drugs. It improves patients' health and quality of life from dangerous diseases such as cancer and genetic disorders.
Research laboratories and organizations must make massive investments to maintain automated cell culture. Moreover, stringent manufacturing regulations for market approvals of the equipment by various governmental agencies, such as the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Commission, increase the costs of these systems. Furthermore, integrating information technology (IT) in instruments for laboratory automation requires high manufacturing expenses, leading to elevated equipment prices. The high initial and maintenance cost of automated cell culture are expected to hamper the growth of the global market as small-scale research laboratories and organizations find it unaffordable to procure such expensive equipment. Moreover, the need for more awareness and the shortage of skilled professionals are expected to hinder market growth during the assessment period.
Regenerative medicine is a young branch of medicine that aims to provide treatments for the replacement of organ/tissue systems in the human body. Regenerative medicine utilizes cells, biomaterials, and molecules to fix structures in the body that are damaged due to injury or disease. Cell therapies and regenerative medicine represent an enormous potential to improve the health-related quality of life of many chronic-ill patients. The imminent and expanding need for novel therapies to solve debilitating health conditions is driving manufacturers to develop innovative cell culture systems.
The technological advancements in automated cell culture offer enhanced productivity and quality of cell lines. Moreover, increasing players' participation in regenerative medicine drives the demand for automated cell culture systems. For instance, Hitachi announced the commercialization of the automated cell mass culture for the first time in Japan, which can manufacture commercial induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) for regenerative medicine in April 2017. The rising need for novel therapies and the development of robotic cell culture workstations and cell detection devices is, in turn, creating opportunities for the automated cell culture market.
By type, the global automated cell culture market is divided into modular automation and whole lab automation.
The modular automation segment is the highest contributor to the market and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 13.54% during the forecast period. Automation is becoming increasingly important for laboratories to stay in business in a market where competition is tough. Automation vendors have developed alternative hardware configurations called 'modular automation' to fit the more miniature laboratory. Modular automation consists of consolidated analyzers, integrated analyzers, modular work cells, and pre-and post-analytical automation. In addition, the automated core laboratory uses a modular automation approach to become a place where experts may analyze laboratory data and give their findings to doctors in the field. Modem software information management and process control tools complement modular hardware. Proper standardization that allows vendor-independent modular configurations assure the success of modular automation.
By equipment type, the global automated cell culture market is divided into automated liquid handling systems, microplate readers, robotic systems, automated storage and retrieval systems, and others.
The automated liquid handling segment owns the highest market share and is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 13.23% over the forecast period. Automated liquid handling systems perform a programmed transfer of liquid volumes between various sources and vessels. Still, they can also achieve temperature incubation, mixing, or magnetic or vacuum-based separations. The automated liquid handling systems segment is projected to reach USD 1,095.9 million by the end of 2027 at a CAGR of 13.03% (2020 to 2027). This high market growth of automated liquid handling systems is due to various benefits, such as reducing processing time, decreasing sample contamination, and increasing accuracy in bioassays. These systems also help researchers from long, repetitive, laborious tasks and free up time for other assays, lab reports, and other lab duties. Furthermore, these automated systems are ideal for medium or high throughput applications, meeting multiple liquid handling requirements, including channels, microplate type, or liquid volumes.
By application, the global automated cell culture market is divided into biopharmaceutical production, diagnostics, gene therapy, drug screening and development, toxicity testing, stem cell research, tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, and others.
The biopharmaceutical production segment is the highest contributor to the market and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 13.54% during the forecast period. Biopharmaceuticals are the primary drugs developed in the pharma sector. Automation in cell culture and cell-line development plays a vital role in biopharmaceutical production. Automation reduces the risk of injury caused by repetitive strain, often associated with continuous manual tasks, thus, improving overall efficiency. Additionally, this reduces the development costs of biopharmaceuticals. Automated cell culture-based vaccine production has expanded manufacturing capacities in large volumes, lower costs, shorter response time, and higher process control while ensuring product quality.
By end-user, the global automated cell culture market is divided into pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, hospitals and diagnostic laboratories, research institutes, and cell banks.
The pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies segment owns the highest market share and is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 14.12% over the forecast period. Various regenerative therapies approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and currently offered commercially are responsible for the growth of pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. For example, Carticel is the first biologic product that received FDA approval in the orthopedic field to treat focal articular cartilage defects. These increased approvals trigger the use of automated cell culture by pharma and biotechnology companies.
For instance, according to LePro PharmaCompass, six of the top 10 drugs with sales of USD 59 billion were recombinant protein biopharmaceuticals manufactured in animal cells in 2015. BioTime (USA) was awarded a new R&D grant for 2019 of up to USD 2.5 million from the Israel Innovation Authority to continue developing OpRegen, the company's retinal pigment epithelium transplant therapy. Thus, the growing incidence of FDA approval and research funds is expected to fuel the segment's growth.
By region, the globalautomated cell culture market is divided into the Americas, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and the Middle East and Africa.
Americas is the most significant share holder in the global automated cell culture market and is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 13.31% during the forecast period. This is due to the existence of key market players, a well-developed healthcare infrastructure, significant per capita healthcare spending, increased funding for research and development, focused research on cancer, and grants from government healthcare agencies. High adoption of advanced medical technologies in the US and Canada is likely to support the dominance of the Americas in this market during the forecast period. In addition, major players such as Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc., Hamilton Company, and Beckman Coulter, Inc. are headquartered in the US, facilitating early market initiation and prompt product supply. Furthermore, the high incidence of cancer cases and growing investment in R&D to develop new treatment options is expected to drive the American automated cell culture market during the forecast period.
Europe is expected to grow at a CAGR of 12.87% over the forecast period. With support from the government, Europe is expected to be the second-largest value contributor in the world market. The European market is expected to propel during the forecast period owing to research and development by manufacturers for the launch of innovative products. For instance, Tecan launched a Fluent Gx automation workstation for use in regulated laboratories in 2018. The growing R&D activities and biopharmaceutical sector are expected to drive the European automated cell culture market. In addition, the availability of high-end technologies in countries like Germany and growing funding from various public and private sources to conduct advanced research foster market growth.
Asia-Pacific is expected to exhibit the fastest market growth owing to the presence of a large patient base, availability of skilled healthcare personnel, and a defined regulatory framework enabling accelerated product approvals. Besides, improving the scenario of life science-related research, developing the healthcare sector, and growing government investments in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical sector in countries like China and Japan will likely impact the regional market growth during the forecast period. For example, the biotechnology industry in India is growing at a high pace. It comprises about 800 companies and is expected to be valued at USD 11.6 billion in 2017. Moreover, the government of India has invested USD 5 billion to initiate research in the biotechnology field.
Moreover, major biopharmaceutical companies are focusing on conducting clinical trial research in Asian countries due to the availability of highly skilled professionals and easy patient recruitment to conduct clinical experiments. This is resulting in a rising number of research laboratories in the region. The increasing number of research laboratories and the rising demand for novel therapies are expected to propel market growth.
The Middle East and Africa would spearhead the market growth, attributing to facts such as the developing healthcare infrastructure, booming medical tourism, and budding medical device industry in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region. According to the Dubai Health Authority (DHA), in 2016, the medical tourism sector showed significant growth of 9% to 10%, and more than 326,649 patients from all over the world visited Dubai for medical treatments. These factors are expected to positively impact the Middle East and Africa market during the forecast period.
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