Lonza Expands Microbial Manufacturing Capacity at Visp
7th August 2020
Lonza is expanding its microbial manufacturing facility in Visp, Switzerland. The new facility will provide mid-scale (3,000 l) commercial manufacturing to multiple customers and in particular to supply Lonza’s long-term partner Servier with the additional capacity required to provide treatment to more patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), a cancer of the white blood cells.
Servier and Lonza have recently signed a long-term extension to their manufacturing agreement for L-asparaginase, produced at Lonza’s Visp site since 2009. Servier intends to expand access to asparaginase-based multi-agent chemotherapeutic regimens, as ALL continues to be the most common type of cancer among children diagnosed with leukemia.
The new facility, expected to be operational in the second half of 2022, will be the sixth to be housed in Lonza’s new biopark in Visp, which is currently under construction. It will tap into existing central utilities and labs and complement the existing small-scale (1,000 l) and large-scale (15,000 l) assets.
Traditionally used for producing hormones, enzymes and some vaccines, microbial fermentation is becoming increasingly attractive for new molecular formats that do not need human glycosylation, given the higher yields and shorter production timelines, Lonza said. Many antibody fragments, as well as plasmid DNA, can be produced in microbial systems.
Lonza said it is constantly developing the technology required including XS Technologies, an extensive microbial expression toolbox with more than 3,000 individual microbial strains expressed, together with a range of manufacturing assets designed to support customers from clinical supply to commercial production.
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