Marken, the clinical supply chain division of UPS Healthcare, moved to expand its logistics network through new good manufacturing practice (GMP)-compliant depots and good distribution practice (GDP)-compliant logistics branches.
The former are located in Los Angeles, US, and Kiev, Ukraine, and the latter are based in Dublin, Ireland, and Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
Currently, Marken operates its logistics service out of 128 locations worldwide. According to the company, by early Q4, it will be operating 12 fully operational GMP-compliant depot locations and 10 million-square-feet of GMP-validated commercial warehouse space.
As a result, Marken is able to provide the delivery of clinical trial materials directly to patients in 45 countries globally, where patient participation might otherwise be ‘logistically challenging’, the company stated.
Targeting cell and gene therapy
The company will add cell and gene therapy capabilities to the Amsterdam facility, through a cryogenic filling station, which Marken explained was necessary to serve its growing list of clients specializing in the area.
While an investment has been made for an additional LN2 service station, to cater to the same therapies, in Geneva, Switzerland.
The decision to add multiple services for temperature-controlled logistics comes as the pipeline of cell and gene therapies expands rapidly. By the end of 2019, the number of such therapies had increased by 25% on the previous year.
Further than this, clinical trial activity over the last four years has increased by 67% in the area, and analysis suggests that the regenerative medicine market will grow to be worth $38.7bn (€34.2bn) by 2024.
Such growth led Marken to release a ‘Smart Box’ specifically for cell and gene therapy shipment last year, which is able to measure location, temperature, movement, shock, pressure and light data.