Cognate doubles manufacturing capacities in Memphis, Europe, as demand for cell and gene therapies skyrockets
The marketplace for gene and cell manufacturing therapeutics continues to be scorching.
Cognate BioSciences, a leading CDMO specializing in gene and cell therapy technologies, announced plans Friday that will double its total manufacturing capacities at sites in both the US and Europe — in direct response to a “great demand of commercial capacity within the biologics industry.”
The company provided most details for its US expansion, which will take place at its current headquarters in Memphis, Tennessee near the Memphis International Airport — crucial, it said, as Memphis is one of the world’s busiest cargo airports. Cognate will add two separate facilities totaling 250,000-square-feet: a GMP distribution center to manage global supply chain needs, and a third site for commercial manufacturing.
“Our expansion plans in cell and gene therapy, in the US and Europe, and the close proximity to a global shipping and logistics hubs, provide Cognate BioServices, together with Cobra Biologics, a unique competitive advantage not available to other CDMOs,” Cognate’s CEO J. Kelly Ganjei said in a statement. “This is critically important to our clients around the world who are commercializing cell and gene therapies that require rapid turn around and often utilize real-time shipping and handling.”
The biotech is committed, Ganjei said, to “rapidly expanding” its global reach and capacity for developing cell and gene therapies. Friday’s announced expansion is part of a 15-year Expansion PILOT (payment-in-lieu-of-taxes) approval from the economic council in Memphis and Shelby counties, continuing a three-year investment in Tennessee of some $200 million by various healthcare and life science companies.
Cobra Biologics, Cognate’s gene therapy arm that it bought last January, is altering its plasmid DNA services for viral vectors through a four-fold increase in HQ DNA manufacturing capacity and new clinical and cGMP facilities in Europe. The HQ manufacturing will provide a six-week delivery time for clinically manufacturing immuno-oncology therapies, Cognate said.