European firms form JV for protein delivery polymers

By Fiona BARRY

- Last updated on GMT

The controlled delivery tech is based on molecules which attract and repel water in APIs
The controlled delivery tech is based on molecules which attract and repel water in APIs

Related tags Protein Pharmacology

French firm MedinCell and Dutch company Corbion have formed a JV to produce polymers for unusual drug delivery of large and small molecule drugs.

The new company, CM Biomaterials, will be based in the Netherlands and supply polymers based on MedinCell’s ‘BEPO’ platform. The drug delivery technology allows controlled release of a drug over several days, or even months, from a biodegradable implant that forms in the body after subcutaneous injection or other local delivery.

The system can be used to administer peptides, proteins, and antibodies, as well as small molecules.

It can also be fine-tuned to deliver hydrophobic and hydrophilica APIs, using water-loving molecules (PEG, or polyethylene glycol) linked to water-repelling blocks (PLA), which form a semi-solid mass when exposed to water. The hydrophilic blocks can interact with hydrophilic APIs and release them, while the hydrophobic blocks solubilise and retain hydrophobic APIs.

The companies say the controlled release system increases patient compliance, and brings lower manufacturing costs by reducing API loss during initial drug release.

The platform was invented for subcutaneous injection but can also be used for intra-articular (into the joint for osteoarthritis), intra-peritoneal and intra-tumoural (for oncology) and intra-vitreal administration.


Corbion will manufacture the polymers at its plants in the US and the Netherlands, while MedinCell will develop and license the technology.

Corion and MedinCell have been in a joint development programme since 2010 for manufacturing of PEG/PLA polymers for drug delivery.

Christophe Douat, CEO of MedinCell commented, “The creation of CM Biomaterials validates our balanced network company model that aims to gather leaders in many fields to create best-in-class medicines for global health. Based on a complementary partnership, CM Biomaterials will best serve BEPO partners and secure the quality of the polymers used for all BEPO applications.”

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