Top five stories from September

By Ben Hargreaves

- Last updated on GMT

(Image: Getty/Golubovy)
(Image: Getty/Golubovy)

Related tags Genentech Takeda CC-Pharming Ge healthcare Merck

The news most interesting to our readers were those featuring collaborations, whether in the production of an Ebola vaccine, biosimilars entering new markets or creating new manufacturing modalities.

1. Genentech reaches settlement over trade secrets theft

The long-running case sees an initial conclusion made, after a settlement agreement is put in place between JHL Biotech and Genentech over claims that the former company benefitted from stolen proprietary information in the development of its biosimilar pipeline. As a result of the agreement, the Taiwanese biotech agreed to stop clinical trials and the manufacture of biosimilars related to the case.

2. Takeda recalls all lots of Natpara due to faulty pens

After it was discovered that rubber particles were detaching into the cartridges of Natpara (parathyroid hormone) products, Takeda initiated a recall of all lots from the US market. The situation was of particular concern due to the fact that Natpara is the only available adjunctive treatment for adult patients with chronic hypoparathyroidism.

3. CC-Pharming attains license for Rituxan biosimilar

Chinese company, CC-Pharming, agreed an exclusive licensing deal with iBio to commercialize a rituximab biosimilar to the Chinese market. A novel element of the agreement sees CC-Pharming utilize iBio’s plant-based manufacturing method to produce the biosimilars in China.

4. GE Healthcare partners with Germfree for manufacturing suite

It was announced that GE Healthcare and Germfree would collaborate to make available a ready-made manufacturing solution, which could be used to develop gene therapies. The solution is scalable all the way through to commercialization, which the companies stated could aid the current issue with capacity in the area.

5. Merck plans to produce 650,000 Ebola vaccine doses

Merck, known as MSD outside of North America and Mexico, revealed its production plans for its investigational Ebola vaccine, after it received priority review designation from the US Food and Drug Administration. Over the next 6-to-18 months, the company will produce 650,000 doses of the vaccine, as the investigational drug continues to be used in the Democratic Republic of Congo to control outbreaks of the virus in the country.

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