Page Loading

Opportunity for Scottish Pharmaceutical Service Companies in Microbiome Drug Discovery and Development


The microbiome has emerged as a potential untapped therapeutic target in a number of diseases. This work aimed to assess the opportunity for Scottish Pharmaceutical Service companies to provide solutions to support the development of microbiome-targeted therapeutics.


Desktop research and analyses were used to: understand the development pathway for novel therapeutics targeting the microbiome; identify companies involved in microbiome drug discovery and development; and map-out supply chain gaps and potential opportunities for Scottish companies.


There are at least 99 companies actively developing microbiome-based therapies. Single species of bacteria and consortia are the predominant classes at this time. Priority disease indications are Crohn’s disease, immuno-oncology, and C. Difficile infection. Thirty-two organisations were identified as specifically providing services to microbiome therapy developers. Key challenges in the development of microbiome therapeutics include: complexity of the data; identification of a therapeutic mechanism; demonstration of efficacy; and manufacturing scale-up. Few Scottish Pharmaceutical Service companies were identified as having a strong focus on supporting microbiome based treatment development. However, many of the skills/assets and knowledge gained in the discovery and development of small molecule and biologic based drugs are transferrable to microbiome based approaches. The outsourced pharma services market for microbiome therapeutics was estimated to be $410 Million in 2021, rising to $8 Billion by 2031.


Contact with the Scottish Pharmaceutical Service subsector to understand awareness of the microbiome opportunities and possible plans to engage and support needed. Voice of Customer engagement is required as to precise requirements desired by companies developing therapeutics. Identification of unmet needs and or areas of dissatisfaction with current outsource service provision.

Author Evolution Bioscience
Published Year 2022
Report Type Research
  • Enterprise
    Sector-level support, Support to existing/growth businesses
  • Sectors
    Life Sciences