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7 November, 2018 - 10:44 By Kate Sweeney

Abzena invests $20m in California upgrade

Cambridge UK biopharma power player Abzena is investing $20 million in augmenting manufacturing facilities in California to further enhance delivery of antibodies and proteins to world leading drug discovery companies.

CEO Dr Jonathan Goldman says customers will be able to cash in on the upgrades from its San Diego facilities in 2019.

Abzena has also unveiled a new chief financial officer as it continues to scale on both sides of the Atlantic.

Abzena was created through the incorporation of Antitope, PacificGMP, PolyTherics, The Chemistry Research Solution (TCRS) and Warwick Effect Polymers.

The business offers a range of complementary services and technologies for the selection, development and manufacture of biopharmaceuticals –products based on antibodies or other proteins.

Working with companies and academic groups all over the world, including most of the top 20 biopharmaceutical companies, Abzena supports the development and manufacture of better treatments for patients.

Multiple antibodies which have been created using Abzena’s technologies are currently being progressed through clinical development by high profile licensees.

Dr Goldman said Abzena has augmented existing 500 L scale biologics equipment with $20M of investment into two new manufacturing suites at 500 L and 2000 L scale in a new GMP facility in San Diego, which will be equipped with Sartorius single use bioreactors.

Abzena’s existing expertise in cell line development is strengthened with a new ambr® 15 automated high throughput bioreactor in Cambridge UK and existing synthetic chemistry capacity is increased with build out of a fully equipped multifume hood laboratory in Bristol, Pennsylvania.

Dr Goldman said: “Sponsors have noted our unique single source high quality integrated solution for biotherapeutics and Antibody Drug Conjugates ranging from discovery to phase II scale under GMP.

“They wish to maintain excellent scientific quality, have a single point of contact and avoid risks of technology transfer. We have received many requests to support programmes to phase II and beyond.

“To that end, we will continue to deliver industry-leading drug discovery, development and manufacturing services from our world-class, fully-integrated sites in the US and UK.”

Abzena’s antibody Drug Substance manufacturing solution will be built in two new suites housed in the facility recently opened in San Diego. These will contain new Sartorius 500 L and 2000 L single use bioreactors supported by a comprehensive range of scale up and process development equipment. The service will be further complemented by additional cell line development and chemistry capacity.

He also welcomed the addition of Richard Milbank as CFO. “Richard brings a wealth of expertise including in senior financial roles in many sectors, including eight years as CFO at NextPharma, a leading Contract Drug Manufacturing organisation. He trained as a chartered accountant at Price Waterhouse.”
 

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