First up is Swiss life science services supplier Lonza, which has been contracted by US cancer drug firm Oncomed to develop processes and manufacture bulk supplies of candidate monoclonal antibody (MAb) based treatments.
The deal – which also saw Oncomed obtain a multi-product access license to Lonza’s GS Gene Expression System, production media and feeds manufacturing platform, will initially cover five MAbs being developed by the US firm although there is scope for expansion.
Stephan Kutzer, COO Lonza Custom Manufacturing, said: “This multi-product contract and GS license agreement demonstrate Lonza’s ability to offer world-class expression platforms in combination with secure manufacturing capabilities for the complete product lifecycle.”
Manufacturing and process development work will take place at Lonza’s cell culture production facility in Slough in the UK.
DSM names customer for Oz plant
Meanwhile on the other side of the world, DSM Pharmaceutical Products (DPP) has also signed a process development and manufacturing deal with Melbourne, Australia-based biologics firm Paranta Biosciences.
Under the agreement DPP – the contract manufacturing arm of Royal DSM - will make supplies of Paranta’s candidate respiratory disease treatment - recombinant human follistatin - at the biologics facility it is building in Brisbane .
Alexander Wessels, CEO of DPP, said: "Working with Paranta is an important milestone for DSM to support the local client base directly from our facility in Australia, expanding our presence in global regions.
DPP started building the A$65m facility in 2010 under an agreement it signed with Biopharmaceuticals Australia (BPA), the Queensland Government and the Australian Commonwealth Government.
To date Paranta is the only firm to be named as a customer for the plant, although DSM did indicate it plans to use the facility to service a development contract it signed with an unnamed ‘major’ pharmaceutical company in June.
Ark wins cancer drug deal
Ark Therapeutics has been called in to produce supplies of Laurantis Pharma’s candidate breast-cancer associated lymphedema treatment lymfactin.
The deal, which depends on Laurantis receiving approval for Phase I trials, will see Ark make the drug - a vascular endothelial growth factor that is delivered using an adenoviral vector – at its facility in Finland.
AMRI wins Shire supply extension
Finally to the US where Albany Molecular Research (AMRI) has had its supply agreement with Shire extended for five years.
AMRI CEO Thomas D’Ambra said: “We are pleased to extend this agreement with Shire,” adding that “our partnership lays the groundwork for AMRI to be considered by Shire for future development and manufacturing opportunities.”