Tech JV will help cell and gene therapy firms commercialize, say founders

Bio-Techne, Fresenius Kabi, and Wilson Wolf have partnered to cell and gene therapy developers commercialize their products.

The joint venture – ownership of which will be split equally – will offer scalable manufacturing technologies and process development know-how to biopharmaceutical developers on a contractual basis.

Specifically, Wilson Wolf will contribute its G-Rex cell therapy generation platform, while Bio-Techne will provide its range of proteins, reagents, media, and gene-editing technologies.

Image: iStock/CountDuckula

Fresenius Kabi’s Lovo cell processing system will be available to developers who work with the JV.

The technology is a benchtop system able to pump a cell solution through a membrane filtration device to allow – according to Fresenius Kabi – rapid fluid management and fast, efficient cell processing.

The rational for the partnership is the predicted increase in cell and gene therapies moving from the development lab into commercial production according to the firms, which cited demand for improved technologies as a key trend.

“The joint venture intends to be integrally involved by continuing to create and provide leading manufacturing technologies that keep pace with this rapidly expanding field and enable it to reach its full potential.”

The companies used autologous cell therapies as an example, suggesting that the logistical challenges involved in manufacturing such products make highly efficient production critical.

“T-Cell therapies for cancer involve collecting white blood cells, genetically modifying them to attack cancer cells, and reinfusing them to the patient. Given the size of the patient population that could benefit from these potentially curative treatments, efficient and scalable manufacturing is essential.”

Cell and gene therapy growth

For Bio-Techne the formation of the JV comes after a busy year of cell and gene therapy focused development.

In August, the firm said it would build a 50,000 square-foot plant in Minnesota for the production of recombinant proteins to support cell and gene therapy developers.

Prior to that Bio-Techne bought B-MoGen Biotechnologies adding gene editing and delivery tools to its offering.

At the time Bio-Techne CEO Charles Kummeth said “B-MoGen’s technologies solve the most complex gene editing problems with proprietary, cutting edge gene editing and delivery tools, enabling and accelerating growth in immunotherapy treatments.”

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