West scaling up AZ plant on demand for Smartdose wearable injector

By Dan Stanton

- Last updated on GMT

West's Scottsdale facility in Arizona
West's Scottsdale facility in Arizona

Related tags Food and drug administration

Demand for West’s wearable injector - which uses the recently-approved Crystal Zenith delivery system - has led to the expansion of a facility in Arizona.

West Pharmaceutical Services’s Smartdose platform is a single-use, electronic wearable injector which includes the firm’s Crystal Zenith (CZ) drug delivery system, a platform comprising vials, cartridges and a 1ml long syringe developed by Japan’s Daiichi Seiko.

Yesterday, the firm announced it is expanding its Scottsdale, Arizona facility on the back of increased customer demand, adding a new cleanroom and additional laboratory space to ramp up both production and R&D.

“Several of West’s pharmaceutical and biotechnology customers have expressed interest in the SmartDose electronic wearable injector,”​ Eric Resnick, President of West’s Pharmaceutical Delivery Systems, told Outsourcing-Pharma.com.

He added that “a total of eight customer-funded development programs are underway”​ based on the SmartDose platform, though did not divulge the dollar amount of this investment.

“It’s important to note that expanding our manufacturing capabilities in Scottsdale will enable us to provide rapid, dual sourcing to meet our customers’ current and future demand.”

CZ and Smartdose sales potential

In May​, a client had an undisclosed oncology product using the CZ system approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). At the time Jefferies’ analyst David Windley described the decision as “a milestone in West’s strides toward proprietary product-driven growth.”

This led to the firm announcing it was looking to ramp up its capacity across its network to cater for increased demand, and as well as the Scottsdale expansion, Resnick said it is continuing to scale up production at its Samrtdose plant in Israel.

West reports its Q2 2015 financial figures at the end of this month and therefore Resnick would not comment on current revenues or sales forecasts for Smartdose and CZ products, but for the first quarter revenues were $5.4m (€5m), up 42% year-on-year.

But historically the firm has shifted away from contract manufacturing towards its proprietary products, with management seeing the CZ system as the key factor in pushing quarterly sales to over $600m by 2016​.

West reported a topline figure of $336m for Q1 2015.

In the original article, we stated that the first product to use a Daikyo Crystal Zenith container was approved by the FDA in May. This is incorrect as there have been other products previously approved in the US that use Daikyo Crystal Zenith polymer as a delivery solution.

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