Reaxa spin-off ADC Biotechnology talks new processing tech

By Emily Dobell

- Last updated on GMT

A developmental purification system for Antibody-Drug-Conjugates will be launched by ADC Biotechnology (ADBC), a spin off from Reaxa, which promises reduced manufacturing costs for “magic bullet” cancer drugs.

ADCB’s prototype system is forecast to be license-ready within two years and will draw on protein, peptide and DNA fragment technology as well as IP licensed exclusively from Reaxa.

The system will use a “bind-and-release” process as opposed to process solution and filtration which is said to save on cost and production time by using fewer and faster process steps.

ADCB Chairman and Reaxa CEO Pete Jackson said that: “Process intensification is an important key to manufacturing cost containment as next generation drugs move towards commercial launch​”.

The ability to access enhanced purification processes through in-licensing proven technology will be attractive for both in-house and contract manufacturing​”.

Jackson was not able to comment further on the technology as it is “subject to a patent application that is not yet filed”​ but told In-PharmaTechnologist that “as soon as we have the patent in place we can say more​”.

ADCs work as carriers for chemotherapy drugs, ‘targeting and entering specific cancer cells prior to ADC degradation to release drug payload’.

With the first ADC awaiting launch approval and 15 others in clinical trial, the molecules are expected to bring in sales of over £1bn by 2015, according to Reaxa.

Reaxa update

Following the sale of Reaxa’s pharma metal scavenging business to Johnson Matthey (JM) earlier this year, the spin out of ADCB (this week) has focused Reaxa’s technology profile and opened up the “opportunity for new investors to come in without impacting the current shareholders in Reaxa​” according to Jackson.

The technology focus for Reaxa is precious metal catalysis, and the technology and risk profile for the antibody technology do not fit with our current investors' strategy, which is to maximise the commercial opportunity around our EnCat polymer-supported catalyst range, in particular our new Nickel EnCat alternative to hazardous Raney Nickel catalysts​” he continued.

ADCB will be based in North Wales, capitalising “on generous regional grant support that was not available in Northwest England​.”

Reaxa is a spin-off from the company which launched Encat catalyst technology in 2003, Avecia Pharmaceuticals, and now has a family of ten Encat polymer-encapsulated pharma catalysts.

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