Fu­ji­film con­tin­ues its biotech build­ing spree with new fa­cil­i­ty in Chi­na

A Japan­ese con­glom­er­ate is mak­ing a big play in Chi­na with the open­ing of a new fa­cil­i­ty, as it con­tin­ues to ex­pand.

Fu­ji­film Irvine Sci­en­tif­ic has opened its new In­no­va­tion and Col­lab­o­ra­tion Cen­ter in Suzhou New Dis­trict, Chi­na, an area in Jiang­su province specif­i­cal­ly des­ig­nat­ed for tech­no­log­i­cal and in­dus­tri­al de­vel­op­ment.

Ac­cord­ing to Fu­ji­film, the 12,000-square-foot site will be re­spon­si­ble for the com­pa­ny’s cell cul­ture me­dia op­ti­miza­tion, analy­sis and de­sign ser­vices. Cell cul­ture me­dia it­self of­ten re­quires cus­tomiza­tion of for­mu­las and pro­to­cols to achieve the de­sired quan­ti­ty and qual­i­ty of ther­a­peu­tic de­sired. Fu­ji­film Irvine Sci­en­tif­ic is of­fer­ing these ser­vices from its head­quar­ters in Cal­i­for­nia and Japan to its cus­tomers glob­al­ly, as well as in Chi­na now.

Fu­ji­film Irvine Sci­en­tif­ic did not dis­close the sum of the fa­cil­i­ty’s cost to End­points News.

“In the past decade, the world has seen rapid growth in Chi­na’s bio­phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal, vac­cine, cell and gene ther­a­py mar­kets. The speed of ap­proval of biosim­i­lar drugs and in­vest­ment by the gov­ern­ment to make more af­ford­able drugs avail­able to its peo­ple is ac­cel­er­at­ing that growth,” said Bob New­man, chief sci­ence of­fi­cer of Fu­ji­film Irvine Sci­en­tif­ic in an email.

New­man al­so ac­knowl­edged that the mar­ket for cell cul­ture me­dia in Chi­na has been ex­pand­ing rapid­ly and is ex­pect­ed to con­tin­ue to grow as re­searchers and drug man­u­fac­tur­ers need bio­process­es to dri­ve down the cost of ther­a­peu­tics.

Fu­ji­film is al­so in­creas­ing the num­ber of sales and tech­ni­cal sup­port staff through­out Chi­na to meet the needs and sup­port the an­ti­body in­dus­try in Chi­na. How­ev­er, the com­pa­ny did not dis­close the num­ber of work­ers be­ing hired.

This open­ing comes as Fu­ji­film is mak­ing oth­er ma­jor moves and in­vest­ments glob­al­ly.

Last year, the com­pa­ny an­nounced that it was ex­pand­ing its Arm­strong R&D Cen­ter of Ex­cel­lence in Cal­i­for­nia to com­mit to the ad­vance­ment of dis­cov­ery re­search, bio­pro­duc­tion and cell and gene ther­a­pies. That same year, the com­pa­ny al­so opened a new drug man­u­fac­tur­ing site in Tilburg, Nether­lands. In March of this year, Fu­ji­film ac­quired re­com­bi­nant pro­tein mak­er Shenan­doah Biotech­nol­o­gy for an undis­closed amount, al­low­ing it to eas­i­ly tran­si­tion be­tween pre­clin­i­cal and clin­i­cal phas­es of tri­als.

Scoop: Boehringer qui­et­ly shut­ters a PhII for one of its top drugs — now un­der re­view

Boehringer Ingelheim has quietly shut down a small Phase II study for one of its lead drugs.

The private pharma player confirmed to Endpoints News that it had shuttered a study testing spesolimab as a therapy for Crohn’s patients suffering from bowel obstructions.

A spokesperson for the company tells Endpoints:

Taking into consideration the current therapeutic landscape and ongoing clinical development programs, Boehringer Ingelheim decided to discontinue our program in Crohn’s disease. It is important to note that this decision is not based on any safety findings in the clinical trials.

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Alex­ion puts €65M for­ward to strength­en its po­si­tion on the Emer­ald Isle

Ireland has been on a roll in 2022, with several large pharma companies announcing multimillion-euro projects. Now AstraZeneca’s rare disease outfit Alexion is looking to get in on the action.

Alexion on Friday announced a €65 million ($68.8 million) investment in new and enhanced capabilities across two sites in the country, including at College Park in the Dublin suburb of Blanchardstown and the Monksland Industrial Park in the central Irish town of Athlone, according to the Industrial Development Agency of Ireland.

Members of the G7 from left to right: Prime Minister of Italy Mario Draghi, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, President Joe Biden, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Japan Fumio Kishida, French President Emmanuel Macron and European Council President Charles Michel (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Biden and G7 na­tions of­fer funds for vac­cine and med­ical prod­uct man­u­fac­tur­ing project in Sene­gal

Amidst recently broader vaccine manufacturing initiatives from the EU and European companies, the G7 summit in the mountains of Bavaria has brought about some positive news for closing vaccine and medical product manufacturing gaps around the globe.

According to a statement from the White House, the G7 leaders have formally launched the partnership for global infrastructure, PGII. The effort will aim to mobilize hundreds of billions of dollars to deliver infrastructure projects in several sectors including the medical and pharmaceutical manufacturing space.

Fed­er­al judge de­nies Bris­tol My­er­s' at­tempt to avoid Cel­gene share­hold­er law­suit

Some Celgene shareholders aren’t happy with how Bristol Myers Squibb’s takeover went down.

On Friday, a New York federal judge ruled that they have a case against the pharma giant, denying a request to dismiss allegations that it purposely slow-rolled Breyanzi’s approval to avoid paying out $6.4 billion in contingent value rights (CVR).

When Bristol Myers put down $74 billion to scoop up Celgene back in 2019, liso-cel — the CAR-T lymphoma treatment now marketed as Breyanzi — was supposedly one of the centerpieces of the deal. After going back and forth on negotiations for about six months, BMS put $6.4 billion into a CVR agreement that required an FDA approval for Zeposia, Breyanzi and Abecma, each by an established date.

Am­gen takes next step with its Chi­na am­bi­tions, out-li­cens­ing drugs to Fo­s­un Phar­ma

In a bid to increase its market share in China, Amgen has agreed to a partnership with a Shanghai biotech — a collaboration and out-licensing agreement for two of its drugs.

Amgen and Fosun Pharma announced a deal Monday in a bid to increase Amgen’s presence in the country. The stated goal so far is to commercialize Amgen’s blockbuster psoriasis drug Otezla alongside Parsabiv, a drug for secondary hyperparathyroidism in adults with chronic kidney disease and on a specific type of dialysis.

As court case looms, Bris­tol My­ers touts la­bel ex­pan­sion for Breyanzi

As Bristol Myers Squibb braces for a court battle over a costly delay — at least for Celgene shareholders — for its CAR-T lymphoma treatment Breyanzi, the pharma giant is touting a label expansion in the second-line setting.

Breyanzi, also known as liso-cel, snagged a win on Friday in adults with large B-cell lymphoma (LBCL) who: don’t respond to chemotherapy, or relapse within 12 months; don’t respond or relapse after 12 months; or are not eligible for hematopoietic stem cell transplant after chemo due to their age or comorbidities.

State bat­tles over mifepri­s­tone ac­cess could tie the FDA to any post-Roe cross­roads

As more than a dozen states are now readying so-called “trigger” laws to kick into effect immediate abortion bans following the overturning of Roe v. Wade on Friday, these laws, in the works for more than a decade in some states, will likely kick off even more legal battles as states seek to restrict the use of prescription drug-based abortions.

Since Friday’s SCOTUS opinion to overturn Americans’ constitutional right to an abortion after almost 50 years, reproductive rights lawyers at Planned Parenthood and other organizations have already challenged these trigger laws in Utah and Louisiana. According to the Guttmacher Institute, other states with trigger laws that could take effect include Arkansas, Idaho, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, and Wyoming.

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AstraZeneca's new Evusheld direct to consumer campaign aims to reach more immunocompromised patients.

As­traZeneca de­buts first con­sumer cam­paign for its Covid-19 pro­phy­lac­tic Evusheld — and a first for EUA drugs

AstraZeneca’s first consumer ad for Evusheld is also a first for drugs that have been granted emergency use authorizations during the pandemic.

The first DTC ad for a medicine under emergency approval, the Evusheld campaign launching this week aims to raise awareness among immunocompromised patients — and spur more use.

Evusheld nabbed emergency authorization in December, however, despite millions of immunocompromised people looking for a solution and now more widespread availability of the drug.

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Deborah Dunsire, Lundbeck CEO

Af­ter a 5-year re­peat PhI­II so­journ, Lund­beck and Ot­su­ka say they're fi­nal­ly ready to pur­sue OK to use Rex­ul­ti against Alzheimer's ag­i­ta­tion

Five years after Lundbeck and their longtime collaborators at Otsuka turned up a mixed set of Phase III data for Rexulti as a treatment for Alzheimer’s dementia-related agitation, they’ve come through with a new pivotal trial success they believe will finally put them on the road to an approval at the FDA. And if they’re right, some analysts believe they’re a short step away from adding more than $500 million in annual sales for the drug, already approved in depression and schizophrenia.

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