Deal-Making

Astrea licenses Avacta’s Affimer reagent technology

Gamma Biosciences’ bioseparation business Astrea will use the Affimer technology to expand its range of ligand discovery and development capabilities. Avacta Group’s Affimer reagents are small proteins that have a binding surface that can be tailored to capture a target molecule of interest out of complex mixtures encountered in biomanufacturing. “The Affimer reagent technology was originally developed at the MRC Cancer Unit in Cambridge UK for proteomics applications and was acquired by Avacta in 2012,” Alastair Smith, CEO of Avacta…

MA center aims to speed up manufacturing for researchers, says Cytiva

A $76 million innovation and manufacturing center will alleviate production backlogs of up to 18 months, says founding member Cytiva. The Massachusetts Center for Advanced Biological Innovation and Manufacturing (CABIM) will partner with industry and academia to reduce backlogs which impact critical research and development. The $76 million in financing was led by Harvard University and supported by other founding members: Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies, Alexandria Real Estate Equities and Cytiva (formerly known as GE Healthcare…

Regeneron confident it can scale-up to meet US COVID MAb demands

Regeneron has entered an agreement worth $2.625 billion with the US government and believes it can supply 1.25 million additional doses of its monoclonal antibody cocktail for COVID-19.   The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)and the Department of Defense (DOD) will purchase finished doses of the antibody cocktail, REGN-COV2, a combination of casirivimab and imdevimab by June as part of Operation Warp Speed (OWS). The new agreement comes after the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA)  granted Regeneron…

CDMO round-up: News from Baxter, AMRI, Lonza and Fujifilm

Baxter announces agreement with Novavax; BARDA adds AMRI facility; Lonza collaborates with Capricor to develop candidate; Fujifilm will help to manufacture Novavax’s COVID-19 candidate. Great to have you here for Bioprocess Insider’s CDMO round-up. First up in our contract development manufacturing organization (CDMO) round-up is Baxter BioPharma Solutions, which recently  confirmed a sterile manufacturing agreement for Novavax COVID-19 vaccine, NVX-CoV2373. “Baxter’s sterile manufacturing services will take place at our facility located in Halle/Westfalen, Germany using existing manufacturing capacity. The facility has…

Thermo Fisher adds EU viral vector plants in €725m Novasep deal

Thermo Fisher adds three Belgian facilities to its gene therapy contract manufacturing business. The sale is the latest divestment by Novasep. Thermo Fisher paid approximately €725 million ($878 million) to acquire Novasep’s Henogen viral vector manufacturing business, a business that brought in around €80 million in revenues in 2020. The deal bolsters Thermo Fisher’s gene therapy capabilities, adding 7,000 square meters of manufacturing space tand 400 staff through three facilities at two locations in Seneffe and Gosselies, Belgium. Thermo Fisher…

Double Dutch: Cristal and Intravacc team on vaccine tech

The partnership looks to develop vaccines using Intravacc’s outer membrane vesicles (OMV) tech and Cristal Therapeutic’s copper-free click chemistry reagent with an initial target being COVID-19. The two companies will work together to develop novel vaccine programs with initial work during the evaluation period taking place at Cristal’s facility, followed by the further work conducted at Intravacc’s facility, both in the Netherlands. Financial details of the collaboration have not been divulged. Initially, the partnership is targeting a vaccine against COVID-19.…

Sanofi shells out $1.1bn for immunology Mab maker Kymab

Sanofi will gain global rights to KY1005 and a monoclonal antibody discovery and development platform through the addition of Kymab. French pharma giant Sanofi is paying $1.1 billion upfront for Cambridge, UK-based biotech Kymab with a further $350 million depending on potential milestones. The deal brings the fully humanized monoclonal antibody KY1005 to Sanofi’s pipeline, along with four other early clinical and preclinical candidates. According to the firm, the candidate targets immune system regulator OX40-Ligand, “blocking inappropriate activation and proliferation…

COVID vaccine success accelerating the mRNA space, MilliporeSigma

MilliporeSigma has bolstered its messenger RNA (mRNA) manufacturing offering with the addition of German CDMO AmpTec and its polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based technology. The deal, financials of which have not been divulged, went through last week and plays into MilliporeSIgma’s strategy to expand its mRNA manufacturing services for both therapeutic modalities and diagnostics. The “technology acquisition,” as MilliporeSigma spokeswoman Rachel Bloom-Baglin describes the deal, comes fresh on the arrival of the first two mRNA vaccines. The US FDA approved both…

Bayer joins Wacker and Fareva in CureVac’s COVID-19 vaccine network

CureVac has hired Bayer to help develop mRNA-based medicines including the COVID-19 vaccine candidate, CVnCoV. Under the deal – financial terms of which were not disclosed – Bayer will provide development support, manufacturing, guidance on clinical operations, regulatory affairs, pharmacovigilance, medical information and supply chain performance. A CureVac spokesman told Bioprocess Insider “The present agreement does not include manufacturing on Bayer´s side. However, Bayer is currently evaluating all options to support manufacturing of CureVac’s COVID-19 vaccine.” The agreement specifies that…

Up on the downstream: Sartorius to buy Novasep’s chromatography division

Sartorius Stedim Biotech says it continues to take on the challenges in efficient downstream processing through the proposed addition of Novasep’s chromatography equipment business. The deal, set to go through in the next few months, will see Sartorius bolster its downstream offering within its Stedim Biotech bioprocessing division. Financial terms have not been disclosed for now, and the acquisition is dependent on antitrust approvals. “The unit to acquire comprises resin-based batch and intensified chromatography systems, and primarily focuses on high-pressure,…