German biotech opens US office to expand its global presence

By Maggie Lynch contact

- Last updated on GMT

(Image: Getty/ kwanisik)
(Image: Getty/ kwanisik)

Related tags: Biotech companies, Gene therapy, Gene therapy candidate, Contract manufacturing, Viral vector, adeno-associated virus, Manufacturing, Preclinical contract research, preclinical, Clinical development

Sirion Biotech has opened a US-based office to support local gene therapy research and clinical development with viral vector contract manufacturing.

Sirion Biotech International, a subsidiary of Sirion Biotech GmbH, opened the new office in Cambridge, MA.

Dieter Lingelbach,COO, Siron Biotech, told us that as the US is the “largest and leading market”​ for many industries, it presents a “huge opportunity”​ for gene therapy – with US companies raising funds to take on novel, viral-based gene therapy developments.

“The US facility not only provides better access to local research and development but also the competence to drive that development forward. Sirion Biotech’s first US employee will have worked with Sirion technology in the lab and is eager to bring that technology into early preclinical and clinical developments in the US,”​ said Lingelbach

The gene cell therapy development company produces custom viral vectors for preclinical and clinical studies. According to Lingelbach, there is a shortage of viral vector supplies for preclinical and clinical studies, and drug developers must order production lots approximately 12 months in advance.

“The market size is actually being driven by the available supply, not by the demand,” ​Lingelbach explained.

UK & European manufacturing in the US

European companies, like Sirion, have been specializing in chemicals as raw materials, key inputs, or platforms to support for drug development, said Lingelbach.

He furthered, “platform technologies are the domain of the Europeans. Sirion follows that tradition by enabling US drug developers to execute on their thorough understanding of the disease.”

In line with this, Sirion signed a partnership with Denali in early January 2019 to, develop adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors for Parkinson’s and CNS diseases.

Orchard and Sirion also signed a licensing agreement to enhance Orchard’s gene therapies. Orchard licensed Sirion’s LentiBOOST technology to enhance manufacturing efficiency of its ex vivo​ autologous hematopoietic stem cell gene therapy drug candidates. 

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