Facilities & Capacity

BioNTech completes $43m pDNA facility in Germany

BioNTech says the completion of its first inhouse plasmid DNA (pDNA) facility in Marburg, Germany aims to increase manufacturing flexibility and support its oncology and COVID-19 pipeline. pDNA acts as an important starting material for the production of messenger RNA (mRNA) based therapeutic and vaccines, including cell therapies. The recently completed facility – which was acquired from Novartis in September 2020 – will enable BioNTech to independently manufacture pDNA for various clinical product candidates, as well as commercial products for…

Bionova to quadruple Fremont plant biologics capacity

Bionova Scientific has commissioned a third CDMO facility in Fremont, California, freeing space to quadruple manufacturing capacity at its nearby plant. Bionova, which fully transitioned into a contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) in November 2021, and was later acquired by Asahi Kasei Medical in April 2022, is set to begin the first phase of its strategic expansion. The firm already operates from two facilities in Fremont. One of the plants acts as its headquarters and the other is a development…

COVID drop: Getting to the ‘core’ of Thermo Fisher’s 7% growth forecast

Thermo Fisher expects a 3% drop in core organic growth for 2023 as COVID-related revenues decline but associated capacity will shift to other products in pharma’s pipelines. For the full year 2022, thermos Fisher reported sales of $44.92 billion, up 15% year-on-year. Its Laboratory Products and Biopharma Services division – which includes both its bioprocess and contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) businesses – pulled in $22.5 billion, up 51% on the year prior, though organic growth (without the impact…

Sanofi to cut hundreds of jobs at two India vaccine plants

Sanofi plans to let go of all its employees at its manufacturing facilities near Hyderbad, following an operations review. According to Reuters, the decision for French drug maker Sanofi to let go of all employees at its two Indian vaccine plants follows the firm’s failure to win a UNICEF contract. The article outlined around 800 members of staff could be affected by the decision and said the Sanofi sources are not being named due to confidentiality. “Over the last few…

Kaneka injects $15m to expand mRNA capacity in Belgium

Kaneka Eurogentec says the investment will create a production capacity approximately five times higher than at its plant in Liège, Belgium. Contract development manufacturing organization (CDMO) Kaneka Eurogentec, an affiliate of Kaneka Corporation, provides offerings including plasmid DNA (pDNA), recombinant proteins, and oligonucleotide services. In 2020, the company started production services for messenger RNA (mRNA) and the $15 million investment aims to scale-up capacity and expand its CDMO business with operations expected to begin from the end of this year. According…

Biomanufacturing Lotte! CDMO to invest $3bn in Korea

Lotte will invest $3 billion over the next seven years to construct three ‘mega’ plants in Korea with a production capacity of 360,000 L. Contract development manufacturing organization (CDMO) Lotte Biologics said each plant will have the ability to produce 120,000 L of antibody drugs. Furthermore, the plants will have additional expansion plans to include a small-scale incubator for clinical drug substance manufacture and a commercial drug product production facility. The build-out of its first plant will start in the…

Resilience steps out of North America to build UAE facility

Resilience has signed a deal with its investor Mubadala Investment Company PJSC to establish a secure supply chain and will construct a facility in Abu Dhabi, UAE. Under the terms of the deal, Abu Dhabi sovereign investment firm Mubadala will be responsible for the build-out of the manufacturing facility. However, the plant will be operated by National Resilience to produce specific biopharmaceutical-related products in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). “As many other governments across the globe, Mubadala has recognized the…

Argonaut to expand fill/finish capabilities in California

CMO Argonaut Manufacturing Services will use capital investment led by Telegraph Hill Partners to expand its manufacturing capabilities in Carlsbad, California. Contract manufacturing organization (CMO) Argonaut serves the life sciences, biopharma, and molecular diagnostics space. While specific financial details have not been disclosed, the firm said the investment will be focused on expanding its Carlsbad manufacturing facilities by installing a fill/finish line. According to Argonaut, the addition of a fill/finish line will expand the CMO’s footprint on the west coast…

2023 is the year for plug-in manufacturing, says BioNTech

BioNTech will make the first mRNA vaccines in Africa this year using its plug-in manufacturing tech, the firm told JP Morgan Conference delegates. Last week, CEO of BioNTech Ugur Sahin described to JPM delegates how the learnings of the pandemic highlighted that “poor countries didn’t get vaccines doses.” However, Sahin offered up a solution to this, saying “the only way to change that is to implement manufacturing technology.” In particular, he drew upon the company’s activity in Rwanda, Africa but…

Swissmedic licenses expanded KBI mammalian cell manufacturing plant

KBI Biopharma says Swissmedic licensure for its expanded mammalian cell manufacturing facility in Geneva will be key to helping customers optimize processes and cut costs. The contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) was licensed in December after the Swiss drug regulator deemed KBI’s mammalian cell manufacturing plant was in compliance with current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) standards. Chief operating officer Mike Landau said the licensure allows KBI to fully support clients in their next phases of growth and certifies the…