Global Markets

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…

‘There is No Life Sciences Equivalent of Apple,’ Horizon Discovery’s New CEO

Horizon Discovery’s new CEO Terry Pizzie says the rate of technology evolution is greater than at any other time in his illustrious career as he reflects on the state of the bioprocessing services industry. Terry Pizzie joined Horizon Discovery Group in 2017 as head of commercial operations, but in May this year he was appointed to the top job. Pizzie has worked in life sciences for close to 30 years and spoke with BioProcess Insider about the changes he has…

WuXi Biologics: Zero to 220,000L of Capacity in 10 Years

WuXi Biologics has invested US$60 million to build a biomanufacturing facility in Singapore. By 2022, the CDMO will have 10 plants – an achievement it attributes to disposable and modular technologies. WuXi Biologics has announced plans to add a S$80 million (US$60 million) clinical and commercial biologics manufacturing in Singapore to its growing global network. When operational, the site will boast 4,500 L biomanufacturing capacity comprised of two 2,000 L traditional fed-batch and one 500 L perfusion based continuous processing…

Coherus Resubmits Neulasta Biosimilar, Aims for November Approval

With successful preapproval inspections at its manufacturing sites, Coherus BioSciences is confident its CHS-1701 pegfilgrastim biosimilar will be approved by the end of the year. In 2017, California-based Coherus received a US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) complete response letter (CRL) for its version of Amgen’s Neulasta (pegfilgrastim), CHS-1701. The CRL requested a reanalysis of a subset of subject samples with a revised immunogenicity assay, along with additional manufacturing related process information. Earlier this month, Coherus announced it resubmitted its…

Multi-Media Player: GE Invests in EU and US Plants to Tap $1.4bn Market

The increased demand for cell growth media from biomanufacturers has driven capacity expansions at sites in Utah and Austria, says GE Healthcare. Globally, GE Healthcare has cell culture media production in Tuas (Singapore), Pasching (Austria), and Logan (Utah, US). To support growing demand from the biopharma industry, the life sciences firm has announced capacity expansions at the two latter plants. “Cell culture media is the fastest growing segment within the cell culture market and it was valued at US$1.4 billion in…

Gilead to Open European Plant to Support CAR-T Manufacture

The site near Amsterdam, The Netherlands will be Gilead Sciences/Kite’s third manufacturing facility to support production of its cell therapies. “The site in Hoofddorp will be Kite’s manufacturing base in Europe, enabling Kite to efficiently manufacture and deliver its cell therapies to people living with cancer in Europe,” Gilead spokesperson Sarah Swift told BioProcess Insider. When operational in 2020, the 117,000 ft2 site will provide 300 new jobs. Gilead Sciences entered the cell therapy space last August through the US$11.9…

Takeda: ‘$62bn Shire Megamerger Brings Greater Geography and Scale’

After weeks of negotiations, Shire has agreed to a Takeda takeover bid worth US$62 billion. The combined company will consist of over 35 manufacturing sites globally. Japanese firm Takeda first made a bid for Ireland-headquartered rare diseases biopharmaceutical company Shire in March. After several rebuffed offers, the firms agreed to merge this week in a deal worth $62 billion (€52 billion). The deal is subject to shareholder and regulatory approvals. A $32 billion bid for Shire made by AbbVie in…

PBL 3,000L Plant Could Alleviate Erwinaze Shortage

Porton Biopharma Limited (PBL) has opened a facility in Wiltshire, UK to make cancer drug Erwinaze (asparaginase Erwinia chrysanthemi). PBL is a biomanufacturer owned by the UK Government. Construction of the 2,100 m2 facility began in May 2016, through a multi-million pound investment from the UK’s Department of Health Capital funding. The plant has opened its doors and full production is set to commence over the next 12 months once the process of qualifying and validating the equipment is complete.…

Catalent’s Next 5 Years: Biomanufacturing Demand to Outstrip Supply

Catalent says it is evaluating separating out its biologics business after investments and M&A have propelled the CDMO out of the sub-5,000 L space. Catalent has reported revenues of US$628 million (€524 million) for its third quarter fiscal 2018. The contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) attributed 18% year-on-year jump to “robust organic growth” in its biologics business and the acquisition of Cook Pharmica last October. The $950m deal added an 875,000ft2 production and fill/finish site in Bloomington, Indiana, complementing…

Complex Sandostatin Manufacturing Holding Off Competition, Novartis

The complexity to manufacture the growth hormone inhibiting peptide Sandostatin will ensure protection from competition, says Novartis. 2017 sales of the acromegaly peptide Sandostatin (octreotide) were down slightly on the previous year, but still brought in US$1.6 billion (€1.3 billion) for Swiss biopharma Novartis. During the firm’s recent first quarter financial call, board member Elizabeth Doherty told stakeholders that while the firm is always looking at potential risks from competition, “we know ourselves with our own experience how difficult it…