Biotage joins the GeneNova project to develop transformative improvements of the drug development and production processes for gene therapies.
— Tomas Blomquist, President and CEO of Biotage
BRIDGEND, COUNTY (OPTIONAL), UNITED KINGDOM, September 1, 2022 /EINPresswire.com/ — Funded by academia, Vinnova and industry, a five-year multi-disciplinary collaboration has been launched with the purpose to improve efficiency in production methods for adeno-associated virus (AAV) based gene therapies. The ultimate aim is to make gene therapies more accessible to patients globally. Biotage is contributing as a collaboration partner with technology and expertise in plasmid DNA and AAV purification, as well as by funding a dedicated PhD student within the project and ecosystem.
Based on recent approvals for use by regulatory authorities, the last few years have seen a dramatic increase in the interest for developing gene therapy drugs. These promise curative treatments of serious and life-threatening diseases, like the gene therapy drugs Luxturna (against genetically determined loss of sight) and Zolgensma (against SMA, spinal muscular atrophy). However, access to gene therapy drugs is currently hampered by high costs of up to several million dollars per dose (e.g. for Zolgensma). One of the reasons for this is the complex and ineffective manufacturing processes.
To address this challenge a cross-functional team of experts from industry and academia has gathered in the GeneNova consortium innovation milieu. Under the direction of Professor Johan Rockberg at KTH, the GeneNova project aims to develop a platform for bioproduction of AAV-based gene therapies. A multitude of current limitations are to be tackled in order to achieve a highly efficient, robust and scalable manufacturing. The team represents expertise from the whole of drug development, from discovery to logistics, together with the expert providers of hardware and analytics. Everything is aligned with one overall goal – sustainable access to curative AAV treatments for more patients globally.
“We are thrilled to join the GeneNova project to develop transformative improvements of the drug development and production processes for gene therapies. Gathering leading experts within industry and academia in this unique innovation milieu and ecosystem has great potential to improve efficiency in AAV production and processing. One of the main challenges is the large-scale plasmid DNA and AAV purification steps. Here we think that we can contribute with our dual flow chromatography technology used in Biotage® PhyPrep system for automated plasmid DNA purification and PhyTip® columns for AAV and other biomolecules purification,” says Tomas Blomquist, President and CEO of Biotage.
GeneNova is supported by Sweden’s Innovation agency, Vinnova, and industry partners to the tune of just over 110 MSEK, covering 2021-2026. The collaboration partners of GeneNova are: Alfa Laval, AstraZeneca, Biotage, CombiGene, Karolinska Institute, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Uppsala University, Vironova, and Ziccum.
Biotage is a Global Impact Tech Company committed to solving society’s problems. We offer workflow solutions and products to customers in drug discovery and development and diagnostics, analytical testing and water and environmental testing. Biotage is contributing to sustainable science with the goal to make the world healthier, greener and cleaner – HumanKind Unlimited. Our customers span a broad range of market segments including pharmaceutical, biotech, diagnostic, contract research and contract manufacturers as well as clinical, forensic and academic laboratories in addition to organizations focused on food safety, clean water and environmental sustainability. Biotage is headquartered in Uppsala in Sweden and employs 497 people worldwide. The Group had sales of 1,232 MSEK in 2021 and our products are sold in more than 80 countries. Biotage’s share (BIOT) is listed in the Large Cap segment on the NASDAQ Stockholm.
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