Upstream & Downstream Processing

Transcenta claims perfusion-based mAb production ‘milestone’

Transcenta says efforts to intensify perfusion-based mAb production platform should give it competitive edge. It made the claim last week, also announcing that tweaks to its perfusion platform allowed it to increase productivity to greater than 4 g/L per day for multiple cell lines. Such intensification is key to Transcenta’s competitive strategy according to CEO Xueming Qian, who citied demand for sustainable supply of lower cost, higher quality medicines as key. “With drug pricing and affordability at the top of…

Repligen up on OPUS and gene therapy demand

Repligen says it will continue to expand capacity to feed demand for its OPUS range of prepacked chromatography columns. For the full year 2019, revenues at bioprocess vendor Repligen Corporation came in at $270 million (€250 million), up from $194 million in 2018. Revenues grew across all the firm’s divisions, with organic growth of 20%, 30% and 40% for Repligen’s proteins, filtration and chromatography franchises, respectively. And within the chromatography franchise, the firm’s OPUS range of prepacked chromatography columns stood…

KKR pumps €50m into Univercells through Gamma funding platform

Over a quarter of Gamma Bioscience’s $200 million funding for next-generation bioprocessing technologies will be used to support Univercells’ biomanufacturing tech platforms. In January, global investment firm KKR launched Gamma Bioscience, a portfolio of life sciences tools subsidiaries. The first company to fall under the umbrella was Astrea Bioseparations, a ligand discovery and adsorbent development services firm, previously known as Prometic Bioseparations, acquired by KKR for around $100 million (€93 million) in November 2019. Now KKR and co-investors have committed…

Bio-Rad optimistic about 2020 despite $20m impact of Q4 cyber-attack

Bio-Rad Laboratories expects to recover 25% of the revenue shortfall resulting from the cyber-attack it suffered in Q4. The US research and clinical diagnostic reagents firm made the prediction during a conference call this week. CFO Ilan Daskal told analysts “Fourth quarter revenue fell short by about $20 million from the midpoint of our guidance, mainly due to the cyber-attack that we reported in early December. He added, “We expect to recover in Q1 of 2020 about $5 million of…

Eppendorf launches twin and flexible bioreactor control system

Eppendorf has launched the SciVario bioreactor control system, which it says allows constant monitoring of two vessels at the same time. The SciVario twin control system, compatible with Eppendorf’s range of bioreactors, fermenters and single-use vessels, aims to help drug developers and researchers by providing a flexible controller to help adapt to changing requirements in a laboratory. “The controller was designed in a compact way to control two vessels in parallel to save space on the bench, but at the…

MilliporeSigma looks to ‘ReForm’ bioformulations with excipient collaboration

MilliporeSigma has teamed with ReForm Biologics to develop and license excipients for use in biologic formulations. The agreement will see the life science business of Germany’s Merck KGaA – known as MilliporeSigma in North America – access proprietary excipients from ReForm Biologics. The bioprocess vendor will fund the development of these excipients for use in the formulation of biological drugs, as well as take charge of manufacturing and commercializing them. “The parties have agreed to keep the exact terms to…

Thermo says Chinese Gov policy will drive growth

Thermo Fisher Scientific says Chinese Government support for biopharma will help grow its business in the country. The life science services, tools and technology firm saw full-year revenue increase 5% to $25.54 billion in 2019 according to documents filed with the US SEC last week. The contribution from Thermo’s operations in China increased 13% year-on-year. And China was a major topic of discussion for CEO Marc Casper during Thermo’s fourth quarter call. “Government priorities in China are aligned with the…

Sartorius ready to snap up more Danaher and GE’s assets, if required

Sartorius is poised to further expand its life science portfolio to help facilitate the Danaher and GE Healthcare merger if antitrust authorities deem more divestments necessary. In February 2019, Danaher entered an agreement to acquire the BioPharma portion of GE Healthcare’s Life Sciences business for $21.4 billion (€19.4 billion). Nearly a year on and the deal is yet to have been approved by antitrust regulators. Danaher has had to divest various life science assets to help ease the merger, with…

Repligen fighting fit in $10bn bioprocess sector, eyes CGT for growth

Repligen says planned tech launches and growing cell and gene therapy sector demand will drive market expansion and growth in 2020. The bioprocess and life science tech supplier shared its thoughts at the JP Morgan Healthcare conference. CEO Tony Hunt said a “surge” in clinical activity is driving expansion in the CDMO space – citing announcements by Catalent and Thermo Fisher Scientific – and at large pharma firms like Amgen, Novartis and BeiGene. “If you go back a few years…

Ori: ‘Partnerships key to bring down cell therapy COGS’

Ori Biotech estimates its automated and closed manufacturing platform can reduce COGS for autologous cell therapies by 60-80% and has teamed with HCATS to help take it to the clinic. One of the key takeaways from this year’s Phacilitate conference last week was the need for partnerships and collaboration to overcome the many issues currently plaguing the cell and gene therapy space, and specifically manufacturing. One such collaboration is between Hitachi Chemical Advanced Therapeutics Solutions (HCATS), the contract development and…