Cambrex boosts contaminant detection tech

Related tags License Cambrex

Cambrex has signed an exclusive license agreement that allows
access to two novel, quantitative assay technologies for the
detection of contaminants such as pathogens in drugs.

The agreement, with The John Hopkins University, will allow the technology to be used to develop products and services for use in microbial testing of drugs, vaccines, biopharmaceuticals and cell therapeutics.

The move also follows its acquisition just days ago of a license to use various genetic probe technologies developed by US firm Epoch Biosciences, which is also intended to be used to increase Cambrex' presence in microbiological quality control in the pharmaceutical, food and other industrial sectors.

The deal, made by a Cambrex subsidiary, Cambrex Bioproducts, involved the acquisition of a worldwide license to Epoch's MGB Eclipse Probe System technology into its rapid microbial detection testing products and services.

Both deals will enable the company to build upon its endotoxin detection and mycoplasma screening testing platforms.

In addition to the two licensing deals Cambrex acquisition of France's Genolife for approximately $6 million (€4.75m) in cash also increases Cambrex's presence in the microbiological testing market.

Dave Eansor, president of Cambrex Bioproducts said: "This license from Johns Hopkins extends our capabilities to identify and quantify pathogens utilizing the recently licensed Epoch MGB Eclipse technology and the recently acquired Genolife know-how."

On a strategic level, Cambrex's hive of activity could be seen as a drive to continually add and integrate unique products and services. The decision to market as well as manufacture could be part of the overall growth strategy in specialty markets. Cambrex have stated in the past that agreements that combines marketing, manufacturing, and distribution services of cell-based therapeutics was in keeping with their future objectives.

Microbiological testing represents a $2 billion market worldwide, with around 145 million tests conducted every year. Classical microbiological methods (e.g. culture plates) account for approximately 70 per cent of all microbial detection tests.

Cambrex​ have also expanded its pharmaceutical activities in the last couple of years, setting up a dedicated pharma and biopharma unit November last year and expanding its production capacity both through internal expansion and acquisition, e.g. the purchase of Bio Science Contract Production in 2001.

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