The site in Berlin, Germany, is the contract development and manufacturing organisation’s (CDMO) sole manufacturing facility and the €20m investment – announced concurrently with the firm’s twentieth birthday – will see the addition of two additional disposable 1,000L bioreactors, as well as double the number of workers over the next two years.
According to the firm’s CEO Wieland Wolf, the investment will strengthen ProBioGen’s market position and will help exploit its potential for the development of production cell lines, process engineering and GMP manufacturing.
The firm has struck a number of deals over its GlymaxX antibody glycol-engineering technology, including a deal with Swiss Biopharma Giant Novartis in July and a deal with fellow Germany-based firm Boehrionger Ingelheim in 2011.
The platform works by combining an antibody producer cell and a gene encoding an enzyme which – when integrated in the cell – interferes with its ability to produce the sugar fructose, enhancing its antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity (ADCC) effector function, and helps increase the efficacy and potency of the cell.
ProBioGen was bought by Egypt-based Minapharm in 2010, and both the ProBioGen site and one in Cairo would see continued investment, chairman of the board, Wafik Bardissi, said last week, as well as share synergies.
ProBioGen is the latest in a number of CDMOs to have invested in capacity and capabilities in response to demand for biopharmaceutical services. Patheon acquired Gallus Biopharmaceuticals last month, while PacificGMP doubled capacity with a new bioreactor earlier this summer.