Cell & Gene Therapy CDMO Begins Operations – Contract Pharma

Posted: February 1, 2020 at 10:49 am

The Discovery Labs and Deerfield Management Company have formed The Center for Breakthrough Medicines, a contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO). The CDMO is occupying over 40 percent (680,000 sq. ft.) of The Discovery Labs' 1.6 million square foot biotech, healthcare and life sciences campus in King of Prussia, PA.The CDMO provides preclinical through commercial manufacturing of cell and gene therapies and component raw materials. It offers process development, plasmid DNA, viral vectors, cell banking, cell processing, and support testing capabilities all under one roof. The company said the $1.1 billion facility will provide instant capacity as the largest known single source for accelerating the delivery and affordability of lifesaving and life-changing therapies from the bench to the patient's bedside.The company has initiated a substantial hiring effort, expecting to hire over 2,000 team members within the next 30 months.In addition to developing the world's largest single-point cell and gene therapy manufacturing facility, The Discovery Labs is establishing THE COLONY which will provide custom built discovery labs, breakthrough funding, sponsored research agreements, housing and relocation for the world's leading iconic experts in cell and gene therapy.THE COLONY will seek to work hand in hand with scientists from both academic and pharmaceutical institutions to unlock and expedite groundbreaking therapies.Marco A. Chacn, founder of Paragon Bioservices and chairman of The Discovery Labs said, "Musicians, artists, members of religious communities and great thinkers throughout time have formed colonies where freedom of thought and expression combined with unlimited dreams and potential have resulted in the world's greatest accomplishments. The United States of America is a perfect example. The goal of THE COLONY is to unshackle the potential of the world's greatest scientific minds."Audrey Greenberg, board member and executive managing director, The Discovery Labs, said, "The Center for Breakthrough Medicines will be serving companies from the earliest stages through commercialization. Its exceptional scale and offering will quickly relieve the production bottleneck for advanced therapies by reducing the time, complexity, and cost of commercializing vitally needed gene and cell therapies.The addition of this end-to-end manufacturing capability is expected to significantly enhance the offerings of The Discovery Labs in an area that has become one of the largest life sciences hubs in the world. Renovations are underway to construct a total of 86 plasmid, viral vector production, universal cell processing, CGMP testing, process development and cell banking suites. The viral vector and cell processing suites will be fully compliant with both U.S. Food and Drug Administration and European Medicines Agency standards. All suites will offer the flexibility to meet client-specific workflows and will be able to adapt quickly to meet demand. The company is in the process of reserving capacity now for late 2020."Today brilliant scientists are advancing an unprecedented number of gene and cell therapy drug candidates. The real tragedy, however, is a scarcity of manufacturing know-how, which is complex and expensive," said Alex Karnal, partner and managing director, Deerfield Management and a board member of the Discovery Labs. "With its visionary business model, it is hoped that The Center for Breakthrough Medicines will help realize the promise of cell and gene therapies in time to treat the many patients who need them."The Discovery Labs provides a central campus where the world's greatest scientists can collaborate on new therapeutic discoveries to eradicate diseases affecting small and large segments of the global population. The Center for Breakthrough Medicines will work with these leaders, life sciences companies, large pharmaceutical companies, and academic and government institutions.This new manufacturing capability is a transformational addition to The Discovery Labs market offering and dovetails with The Discovery Labs biotech incubator, Unite IQ. Unite IQ offers immediate space to emerging life sciences companies and scientists giving them the ability to grow from startup to enterprise company on one campus. The incubator and accelerator space at Unite IQ provides a comprehensive home for startups with every resource needed to initiate business operations. Unite IQ tenants are expected to utilize the discovery, development, testing, and manufacturing capabilities of the Center for Breakthrough Medicines with seamless forward integration of processes and analytics, and seamless tech transfer from research lab to large scale production.

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Cell & Gene Therapy CDMO Begins Operations - Contract Pharma

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