Facilities & Capacity

Fujifilm FY22: CDMO biz robust but COVID demand runs its course

Fujifilm has cited strong demand for process development and manufacturing work at its Denmark site as a key driver in its fiscal year 2022 results. For the full year ending 31 March 2023, Fujifilm Corporation reported sales in its healthcare division of ¥918 billion ($6.7 billion), up 14.5% on the year prior. Within the segment, the firm’s bio contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) businesses grew 29.2% year-on-year, pulling in ¥194 billion ($1.43 billion). “Revenue rose due mainly to strong…

Cali clinical plant to make ‘ImmPACT’ on CAR-Ts

ImmPACT Bio has opened a facility in LA to support IMPT-314, a CD19/CD20 bispecific CAR-T candidate for B-cell mediated malignancies and autoimmune diseases. The 21,500 square-foot facility in West Hills, Los Angeles includes two manufacturing suites dedicated to autologous cell therapy drug manufacturing, a QC lab, and space for future cleanroom expansion. The $15 million investment will support lead candidate IMPT-314 by accelerating clinical supply as the firm evolves its process and integrates automation. The chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell…

Bioprocess transformation: It’s not just about the tech, says expert

To implement transformation successfully in your company, you must start with the person and not with the technology, an expert from GSK says. As the pharma space evolves rapidly, new modalities come online and the industry collectively pushes for faster times to market with lower costs. It is unsurprising that biotechs must semi-regularly implement and adapt new technologies. Speaking at BPI Europe 2023, Amsterdam, Fausto Artico, global R&D tech head of innovation and data science at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), told delegates…

Merck KGaA to build Asia-Pacific bioprocessing center

Germany’s Merck has signed a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (Mou) with the Korean Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE) to build a facility in Daejeon City. Merck KGaA said the proposed bioprocessing plant would support commercial manufacturing for biotech and pharmaceutical clients across the Asia-Pacific (APAC) area. Additionally, the firm claimed it plans to work alongside the Daejeon government to support biotech companies that are based in the Daedeok Research complex in Daejeon. Moreover, the collaboration aims to advance the…

Aldevron ups mRNA capacity in North Dakota

Aldevron will add lipid nanoparticle (LNP) encapsulation and aseptic fill-finish capabilities in Fargo on the back of post-COVID demand for mRNA therapies and vaccines. The additional drug product services will enable contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) Aldevron to offer customers full messenger RNA (mRNA) services from the site in Fargo, North Dakota. According to Mark Wetzel, VP and general manager of mRNA Services at Aldevron, the long-planned expansion has been driven by high interest and increased demand following the modality’s…

Novartis sale of IL plant part of ‘strategic and opportunistic’ CGT biz

Novartis has offloaded the former AveXis gene therapy facility in Libertyville, Illinois to Bristol Myers Squibb to support its CAR-T portfolio. Novartis added the Libertyville plant through the acquisition of AveXis in May 2018, and used it to support the commercial launch of one-time spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) gene therapy Zolgensma (onasemnogene abeparvovec). But in November last year, the firm announced the plant was to be closed with 275 jobs at risk as part of a restructure that would consolidate Zolgensma…

Boehringer Ingelheim opens $386m German R&D plant

The Biologics Development Center (BDC) will develop antibodies and therapeutic proteins and manufacture substances for clinical trials, says Boehringer Ingelheim. The €350 million ($386 million) figure is Boehringer Ingelheim’s largest single investment in Germany to date and the company said the Biberach an der Riß,  plant will account for around 50%of the firm’s research pipeline. “With state-of-the-art laboratory and process equipment and a team of highly skilled scientists, the BDC will have the necessary capabilities to develop and produce drug…

Samsung Biologics Q1 driven by full capacity utilization

Full utilization across its three plants has enabled the CDMO to report 41% revenue growth in the first quarter, says Samsung Biologics.   For the first quarter 2023, contract development manufacturing organization (CDMO) Samsung Biologics reported total revenues of KRW 720.9 billion ($539 million), a 41% increase year-on-year. Net profit for the first three months were KRW 141.8 billion , a slight decrease on Q1 2022’s KRW 146.9 billion, attributed to “the elimination of intercompany transactions” after the acquisition of…

Ghanaian consortium to build manufacturing plant

President Nana Addo Dankwa Afkufo-Addo has announced the construction of Ghana’s first vaccine manufacturing facility.   Ghana is set to begin construction of its first manufacturing plant this July, with the expectation to be fully operational by January 2024. Under DEKs Vaccine Ltd, a private sector-led consortium of local Ghanaian pharmaceutical firms, the facility will be a fill/finish site, responsible for producing vaccines for rotavirus, cholera, malaria, and pneumonia. It will primarily manufacture malaria vaccines and import COVID components to…

GSK workers to strike across all UK manufacturing sites

UK-based trade union Unite say hundreds of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) manufacturing employees will stage a series of walkouts throughout May at several sites. 750 members of Unite voted for strike action after rejecting pharma giant GSK’s offer of a six percent pay increase and a one-time payment of £1,300 ($1,615). According to the trade union, this represents a “substantial real terms pay cut” due to the current inflation rates. “We recognize that for many of our people, this past year has…