Catalent bolsters CGT biz with RheinCell Therapeutics buy

The acquisition of RheinCell Therapeutics will position Catalent as a partner of choice across the iPSC value chain, says the CDMO.

The deal, financial details of which have not been divulged, sees contract development manufacturing organization (CDMO) Catalent buy developer and manufacturer of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) RheinCell Therapeutics.

The deal is expected to close before the end of this year and will enable Catalent to offer the foundations to scale iPSC-based therapies.

Image: iStock/Zhanna Hapanovich

iPSCs cells can be separated into various cell types to address an extensive range of therapeutic indications.

“The addition of RheinCell Therapeutics will, upon completion, position Catalent Cell and Gene Therapy as a partner of choice for innovators across the iPSC value chain,” Colleen Floreck, VP of Global Marketing and Strategy at Catalent Cell and Gene Therapy, told BioProcess Insider.

“The deal solidifies Catalent’s strong commitment to be the ‘first-to-industrialize’ emerging cell therapy modalities and creates for us a path to make these emerging cures more broadly accessible to patients.”

RheinCell is based in Langenfeld near Düsseldorf, Germany and Floreck told this publication the acquisition “expands the company’s European presence.”

Once the deal closes, RheinCell’s employees will join Catalent’s team.

“RheinCell Therapeutics’ entire team of around 20, including management, scientists, and operations talent, led by their CEO, Juergen Weisser, will join Catalent Cell & Gene Therapy,” Floreck told us.

M&A activity

Catalent began its journey in the advanced therapy sector with the purchase of gene therapy CDMO Paragon Bioservices for $1.2 billion in May 2019.

The Paragon buy was followed quickly by the acquisition of two viral facilities from Novavax, increasing Catalent’s gene therapy capacity.

Catalent then entered the cell therapy business through the $315 million acquisition of Masthercell and its manufacturing facilities in Houston, Texas and Gosselies, Belgium in February 2020.

Catalent expanded its Gosselies site with the acquisition of a manufacturing unit from Bone Therapeutics in November 2020 for $14 million and attained another facility at the site through buying Promethera in May 2021.

Catalent also acquired Delphi Genetics in February 2021 to launch plasmid DNA (pDNA) manufacturing capabilities to its service offerings.

“Catalent is continuously evaluating opportunities in innovative technology and market areas that would enhance our offerings to customers,” Floreck said.

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