Author Archives: BPI Staff

WuXi Pumps $20m into Conjugation and Fill/Finish Site

WuXi Biologics has begun building a biologics conjugation and drug product plant in China to support antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) services. To be known as DP3, the 6,000m2 facility will be the third drug product site for the contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) and is expected to be open next year. The facility in Wuxi City, China will offer both clinical and commercial antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) services and will be an extension of similar conjugation and fill/finish operations at WuXi’s…

June Spotlight

Holding True to the Price-Cap Pledge As in previous years, 2018 started with more than 30 drugs increasing in price on the US market. However, data and analysis firm GlobalData observes that criticism from politicians and the public seems to be keeping the industry to a 10% self-imposed price-hike limit. It began with Allergan CEO Brent Saunders pledging to police pricing in 2016, when he stated that his company would limit itself to one price increase per year and only…

Jefferson Bioprocessing Institute Aims to Feed High Demand for Skilled Workers

GE Healthcare and Ireland’s NIBRT will support the Jefferson Institute for Bioprocessing, set to open its doors next year. The site in Pennsylvania will train around 2,500 people in biomanufacturing operations per year. “There is high demand for trained professionals in the growing fields of biologics,” Debbie Goldberg, director of Public Relations at Jefferson (Philadelphia University + Thomas Jefferson University), told BioProcess Insider. As such, the education and training institute for bioprocessing has selected a site and will open its…

BioSymphony No. 1: Oncobiologics Wins First CDMO Deal

Sonnet BioTherapeutics has contracted Oncobiologics to develop and manufacture four undisclosed biologic compounds. The Master Services Agreement (MSA) with Sonnet BioTherapeutics is the first to leverage Oncobiologics’ BioSymphony Platform, consisting of in-house monoclonal antibody (mAb) development and manufacturing capabilities. Lawrence Kenyon, Oncobiologics’ CFO, told BioProcess Insider the platform is used in a small biotech company setting, which results in a “more efficient and timely process for bringing mAbs forward.” He continued: “Our goal, and the purpose of the platform, is…

Automated Tech Ups Hitachi’s Cell Therapy Interest

Recent entrant to the regenerative medicine space Hitachi Chemical has partnered with Invetech to commercialize the Counter-Flow Centrifugation system – an automated platform for cell therapy manufacturing. The partnership will allow customers of Hitachi Chemical Advanced Therapeutics Solutions (HCATS) to access Invetech’s Counter-Flow Centrifugation (CFC) system in the clinical and commercial manufacturing of cell-based therapies using closed single-use disposables. Hitachi entered the regenerative medicine space in 2017 through the $US75 million (€64 million) acquisition of cell therapy contract development and…

TxCell Opts for Lonza to Make CAR-Treg Clinical Batches

Lacking the resources to manufacture in-house, French biotech firm TxCell has chosen Lonza to produce its HLA-A2 CAR-Treg cellular product, TX200. In February, TxCell finalized its manufacturing process to make Tx200, and began transferring tech to its contract manufacturing organization (CMO). Now the French biotech has revealed the CMO is Lonza, which will manufacture clinical batches of the CAR-Treg product from its production site in Geleen, the Netherlands. TxCell CEO Stephane Boissel told Bioprocess Insider Lonza will produce Phase I/II…

May Spotlight

Welcome New BPI Colleague In April, BioProcess International waved a reluctant goodbye to European strategic marketing consultant Joanna Hendrikx. Pregnant with her second child, she is looking forward to devoting herself exclusively to motherhood. We will miss her energy, finesse, and sense of humor even as we welcome our new colleague taking over her role here. Victoria Biscoe has a long history with Informa, our parent company, having joined in 2010 as a key account manager for the Informa Life…

Bavarian Nordic: Smallpox Vaccine Plant ‘Encouraged’ by US Government

Bavarian Nordic is constructing a US$75 million fill & finish facility in Denmark on the back of future US government contracts to supply smallpox vaccine Imvamune. Last September, the US government’s Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) awarded Danish vaccine manufacturer Bavarian Nordic a contract for the manufacturing and storage of its smallpox vaccine Imvamune. The deal, worth more than $539 million (€460 million), is the third such award to manufacture vaccine bulk to the US Department of Health…

Novartis Building $55m gene therapy plant, Creating 200 Jobs in NC

A week after buying AveXis, Novartis has announced plans to build a gene therapy manufacturing facility in Durham, North Carolina. On May 15, Swiss Biopharma Novartis confirmed the completion of the US$8.7 billion (€7.4 billion) acquisition of clinical stage gene therapy firm AveXis. A week later, Novartis has unveiled plans for a $55 million gene therapy production plant in Durham, North Carolina to support AveXis’ gene therapy pipeline targeting rare neurological genetic diseases. AveXis’ lead candidate AVXS-101, in development for…

Novasep Invests in Belgian Fill & Finish Site; Cites Lack of Global Capacity

The tension on the market surrounding the lack of fill & finish capabilities is ‘visible,’ says Novasep as it pumps US$12 million into a site in Belgium. The investment at Novasep’s site in Seneffe, Belgium will support the fill & finish for viral vectors, mAbs and other low-volume biologics. According to Laure Saloin, a spokesperson from the French life sciences services firm, the €10 million (US$11.8 million) spend supports the “one-stop-shop approach for our monoclonal antibodies and our viral-vectors bulk…