Deal-Making

Boston Labs and Germfree launch mobile CGT platform

Boston Labs and Germfree Laboratories have partnered to launch a mobile cell and gene therapy (CGT) manufacturing platform in Boston, US. The partnership between clinical logistics firm, Boston Labs, and manufacturer of mobile and modular laboratories, Germfree, aims to reduce client CGT production expenses and complexities by delivering access to mobile manufacturing facilities wherever they are required. The CGT mobile manufacturing platform will be launched in the fourth quarter of 2021 in Boston, Massachusetts offering a decentralized cell and gene therapy…

Novartis boosts optogenetics portfolio with Arctos buy

Novartis will bolster is adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene therapy-based options for different forms of blindness through the acquisition of Arctos Medical. Swiss pharma giant Novartis has acquired gene therapy firm Arctos for an undisclosed fee, gaining one pre-clinical optogenetic AAV gene therapy program and its technology platform. Optogenetics uses light to modulate molecular events in a targeted manner in organisms or living cells and according to Novartis the acquisition supports its commitment to using optogenetics-based therapies to restore vision to patients…

Serum Institute invests $68m in Oxford Biomedica to expand vector capacity

Oxford Biomedica will add 39,000 square feet of advanced manufacturing space at its Oxbox site in the UK following an investment from the Serum Institute of India. The £50 million ($68 million) investment from Indian vaccine giant Serum Institute of India will be used to develop the fallow area at Oxford Biomedica’s ‘Oxbox’ viral vector manufacturing site in Oxford, UK. In return, Serum Institute of India – through its subsidiary Serum Life Sciences – will acquire a 3.9% stake in…

Moderna and AbCellera join forces to develop antibody therapies

Moderna’s mRNA technology platform will be combined with AbCellera’s AI-powered antibody discovery platform to develop mRNA-encoded antibody therapeutics. The multi-year deal, of which financial details have not been disclosed, will see Moderna use AbCellera’s antibody discovering platform to search and examine natural immune responses to identify therapeutic antibodies against up to six targets. AbCellera’s platform will be combined with Moderna’s messenger RNA (mRNA) technology platform with a shared aim of accelerating the development of mRNA-encoded antibody therapeutics. Under the terms…

Biocon jumps into vaccines through $4.9bn Serum Institute pact

The strategic alliance will see Biocon access a minimum of 100 million doses of vaccines per year from Serum Insititute’s facility in Pune, India. The two Indian biopharma giants announced Friday a strategic alliance to complement each other’s vaccine and biologics capabilities and manufacturing capacity. “This alliance will complement the strengths and resources of the two leading players in vaccines and biologics,” Biocon’s executive chair Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw said. “Our shared vision of building large scale businesses having global impact makes…

CEVEC and UCB ink AAV manufacturing agreement

UCB will use CEVEC’S adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector manufacturing technology platform to research, develop and produce AAV gene therapy products. Under the terms of the agreement, CEVEC Pharmaceuticals will grant UCB the non-exclusive rights to its ELEVECTA technology to research, develop, and manufacture Adeno-Associated Virus (AAV) vectors for gene therapy applications. The deal also provides UCB with the option to obtain licenses for use of the ELEVECTA producer cell lines in commercial production of potential AAV gene therapy candidates, and…

Protein boost for Repligen through $150m Avitide buy

The latest acquisition by Repligen will boost its proteins business, adding bespoke affinity purification ligand manufacturer Avitide. The deal sees bioprocess vendor Repligen Corporation shell out $75 million in cash and $75 million in stock for Lebanon, New Hampshire-headquartered firm Avitide. Avitide is a manufacturer of chromatography resins used in downstream bioproduction and its bespoke commercial offering will bolster Repligen’s own proteins business and its affinity ligand discovery service. Repligen’s legacy proteins business – which includes its Protein A chromatography…

CureVac drops CDMOs but continues COVID-19 vaccine development

CureVac has terminated contracts with two of its CDMOs – Wacker and Celonic – after demand for potential COVID-19 vaccine diminishes. However, the firm remains positive future clinical trials will go ahead. The German biotech entered the COVID-19 vaccine race in March 2020 and began creating mRNA COVID-19 candidate, CVnCoV. The firm quickly struck deals with various contract development manufacturing organizations (CDMOs) such as Novartis, Bayer, Rentschler, GSK, Wacker and Celonic to support production of the candidate. However, just a few…

Affinia strikes strategic AAV manufacturing deal with Lonza

Affinia has signed a multi-year agreement with CDMO Lonza to make gene therapy candidates targeting cancer and neurological disorders. Swiss contract development manufacturing organization (CDMO) Lonza will provide manufacturing services for Affinia Therapeutics for two of its gene therapy candidates targeting metachromatic leukodystrophy (MLD), a rare neurodegenerative disease, and brain metastases secondary to human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 positive (HER2+) breast cancer. Both candidates are based on the firm’s lead adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector, Anc80L65. Anc80L65-ARSA aims to treat…

Ins & Outs: Genezen new CEO to lead transition into full service CDMO

Ray Kaczmarek, the new CEO of Genezen, figuratively sat down with BioProcess Insider to discuss his strategy and aims for the firm. Sit back, relax, and enjoy this week’s Ins and outs. Kaczmarek has spent the past 20 years in pharmaceutical and biotechnology manufacturing, as well as supply chain operations, serving in senior roles at Trilink Biotechnologies, Nitto Avecia Pharma Services, and Pacira Biosciences. His latest career move takes him to contract development manufacturing organization (CDMO) Genezen, where he serves as…