Deal-Making

Dyadic: Deals stack up as industry looks to ‘game-changing’ expression system

Another quarter of deal making by Dyadic International demonstrates how companies are looking to microorganisms instead of CHO to produce affordable drugs, the firm says. Numerous biopharma and biotech firms over the past few years have been turning to Dyadic International to access its C1 fungus-based expression system. The second quarter 2019 was no exception, with Luina Bio, Alphazyme, and the Serum Institute of India inking separate agreements with Dyadic within a two-week period. Such deals reflect Dyadic’s long-term vision…

CMOs to continue picking up Big Pharma non-core facilities

Recent facility acquisitions by Lonza and Catalent show Big Pharma is divesting its non-core assets in a trend that is set to continue, according to PharmSource. In the previous couple of months, contract manufacturing organizations (CMOs) Lonza and Catalent have both increased their production networks through facility acquisitions. Lonza’s expansion incorporates a sterile, multi-product drug product facility in Stein, Switzerland, acquired from fellow Swiss firm Novartis. Catalent, two weeks prior, added its first biologics plant outside the US through a…

AskBio buys Synpromics, plans expansion

Asklepios BioPharmaceutical (AskBio) has bought Synpromics bringing gene control synthetic promoter technology to its AAV gene therapy programs. Under terms of the deal, Edinburgh, UK-based Synpromics will will bring synthetic promoter technology, along with bioinformatics and intelligent data-driven design, to North Carolina’s AskBio’s gene therapy pipeline. AskBio has its own capsid library and a proprietary adeno-associated virus (AAV) manufacturing platform called Pro10 which it uses in its gene therapies. Its lead candidate is in Phase I/II for Pompe Disease. “For…

Lonza to simplify vein-to-vein supply chain with Vineti partnership

The cell and gene therapy industry is at a global inflection point says Lonza as it teams with logistics firm Vineti to remove the supply chain hurdles affecting the space. The non-exclusive partnership will see contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) Lonza incorporate Vineti’s real-time end-to-end supply chain platform into its cell and gene therapy offering. “The Vineti and Lonza partnership is a preferred business collaboration to drive manufacturing efficiencies in the C&GT [cell and gene therapy] manufacturing process by…

Pfizer licenses AAV platform for ataxia gene therapy

Pfizer will use REGENXBIO’s adeno-associated virus (AAV) delivery platform for a gene therapy aimed at treating neurodegenerative disease Friedreich’s ataxia. In REGENXBIO’s second quarter 2019, a major milestone was reached with the approval of Novartis/Avexis’ Zolgensma (onasemnogene abeparvovec). The gene therapy uses the NAV Technology Platform, created and validated by REGENXBIO’s founders and collaborators at the University of Pennsylvania, which uses over 100 adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors to deliver engineered genes to cells. The firm, which is also developing its…

Novo Nordisk to convert Purdue NC plant to make oral diabetes drug

Novo Nordisk will rebuild a facility in Treyburn, North Carolina acquired from Purdue Pharma to support an oral form of its GLP-1 analogue semaglutide. In an email sent to staff and posted on cafepharma.com, Craig Landau – CEO of OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma – said an evaluation of his firm’s manufacturing operations and capabilities has resulted in the sale of its Treyburn solid oral dose plant to Danish drugmaker Novo Nordisk. Financial details of the deal have not been divulged,…

Challenging the vaccine space: The problem with pioneers

With GSK, Merck, Pfizer, and Sanofi dominating the vaccine space, “the only thing pioneers get are arrows in their back,” say a group of industry experts. At BioProcess International Europe in Vienna, Austria in April, Bioprocess Insider hosted a vaccine-focused roundtable. The panel brought together some of the world’s leading luminaries within the space to discuss some of the major challenges within the vaccine industry, from technology challenges to the online army of anti-vaxxers. The group also spoke about the…

Danaher: ‘All indications show GE is in wonderful shape’

Danaher Corporation says customers are excited about the combination of Pall Biotech and GE Biopharma as it moves closer to completing the $21.4 billion acquisition. In February, Danaher announced it had reached an agreement to acquire the biopharma division of GE Healthcare for $21.4 billion (€19.1 billion). Danaher first entered the bioprocess space through its $13.8 billion acquisition of Pall Corporation in 2015. This acquisition will, therefore, make Danaher the largest vendor with a fully end-to-end bioprocessing offering. The deal is…

Big Pharma M&A a boon for business, says Thermo Fisher

Thermo Fisher says it is well positioned to benefit from recent M&A activity within the biopharma space: Takeda and Shire, BMS and Celgene, AbbVie and Amgen. So far, 2019 has been a big year for Big Pharma megamergers. Takeda completed its $62 billion (€56 billion) takeover of Shire in January, Bristol-Myers Squibb is moving closer to joining with Celgene in a $74 billion deal, and last month AbbVie entered an agreement to buy Allergan for $63 billion. The biopharma space…

VGXI to supply plasmid for Geneos’ cancer DNA vaccines

Plasmid manufacturer VGXI has entered a long-term supply agreement to support development of Geneos Therapeutics’ personalized cancer vaccines. “DNA vaccines are unique from typical vaccines in that they contain no protein components,” Christy Franco, senior manager of BD at VGXI, told this publication. “A synthetic, circular DNA encodes for portions of the patient’s tumor that have been identified as immunogenic. After delivery, the DNA vaccine expresses those protein segments which trigger your body’s immune system to identify, track down, and…