India's TCG launches new CDMO arm stateside to meet the call for 'American-made' pandemic drugs
Thanks to 57,000 square feet of real estate in New Jersey and Virginia, a new CDMO arm of India’s TCG Lifesciences now has a US footprint and will use it to focus on efficient and cheap production of Covid-19 related medicines and other antiviral drugs.
Called TCG GreenChem, the new manufacturing subsidiary will operate out of 3,000 square feet of lab space in Virginia Commonwealth University’s Biotechnology Research Park and 54,000 square feet of lab and office space in Princeton’s South Corporate Center.
The company will offer CMC services for development and clinical trial supply, according to a press release. The new subsidiary will also work to “accelerate the transition of drug candidates” through the pipeline by utilizing what it calls continuous flow technology.
While Covid-19 will likely be the main focus for GreenChem as the pandemic continues to evolve, the company will also use its capacity to develop API for other drugs. In the release, the company touted its abilities to utilize “deep expertise in areas of automated catalysis/reaction screening, reaction optimization, and continuous chemistry to support the needs of the big pharma and biotech industry.”
GreenChem will also work to develop novel processes for medicines related to the virus, and said it is already under contract with research foundations and hospitals, the US government and unspecified biotech companies.
In a statement, Swapan Bhattacharya, TCG Lifesciences’ managing director, praised the company’s management team as vitally important to the new company’s goals.
“The priority of our customers today is to find ways to leverage their external partners to fill up a large part of their product development needs,” Bhattacharya said. “In order to become their preferred partners, we need to provide high quality, efficient and low-cost services which are only possible if we deploy high-end talents and skills that can drive innovation.”
Both TCG Lifesciences and TCG GreenChem are funded by The Chatterjee Group, a private equity firm that has its hooks in biotech, biotech real estate, petrochemical, IT and academic research outlets.
The Indian CDMO is a late entry to the race for a Covid-19 manufacturing response stateside. With the financial backing of the Trump administration, a group of upstart CDMOs targeting Covid-19 related generics has earned big contracts from the government to peddle their wares.
One point of differentiation is GreenChem’s Indian origins. India, one of the largest producers of API and finished generics shipped to the US, has become a target for US lawmakers looking to ease the country’s dependence on foreign drugs amid the pandemic. With Trump out the door, the Biden administration hasn’t shown the same explicitly nativist drive for “onshoring” drug supply chains — an initiative deeply unpopular in pharma.