AGC Biologics adds new viral vector suspension capabilities at US cell & gene facility

By Rachel Arthur

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags AGC Biologics Cell lines Gene therapy Cell therapy Viral vector cell and gene therapy

The Longmont facility. Pic: AGC Biologics.
The Longmont facility. Pic: AGC Biologics.
AGC Biologics will add viral vector suspension technology and capacity for the development and manufacturing of gene therapies at its commercial-grade campus in Longmont, Colorado.

The new capabilities, which are expected to come online in in Q3 this year, will more than double the site’s viral vector capacity. It also allows AGC Biologics to provide a variety of end-to-end cell and gene therapy services as the site, adding to its existing viral vector and cell therapy offerings.

The viral vector suspension expansion is a part of a more than $30m investment by AGC Biologics in its new Longmont campus, which it acquired from Novartis Gene Therapies in August last year.

Full complement of bioreactor sizes

The new suspension capabilities include a set of bioreactor sizes for product development (AMBR, 10L and 50L), and a complete range of commercial manufacturing capacities (50L, 200L, 500L and 2000L), enabling the site to provide support for the entire lifecycle of a product.

North America has historically been home to more advanced therapy and regenerative medicine developers than any other region worldwide. Further, the 2021 Q3 Cell & Gene Therapies Market Outlook​ report from industry standard research (ISR) revealed viral vectors are the most common thing a drug developer needs from a CDMO.

“The suspension expansion helps us offer the most impactful, efficient and scalable technologies for bringing viral vector-based gene therapy products to market,”​ said Tony Fraij, General Manager, AGC Biologics Longmont.

“This latest investment helps us round out the services we offer at this campus.

"Now, with a full suite of capabilities and the extensive expertise of our scientists, we can support virtually any type of viral vector or cell therapy development and manufacturing project.”​ 

In 2020, AGC Biologics acquired a cell and gene therapy site in Milan, Italy from MolMed S.p.A. The Milan team’s technical expertise will help launch the new viral vector capabilities in Longmont and - with the capabilities offered by the two sites - AGC Biologics says it is now one of only a few CDMOs with end-to-end cell advanced therapies on two continents.

“This investment helps AGC Biologics address the needs of gene therapy developers at our new central location in North America,”​ said Patricio Massera, CEO of AGC Biologics.

“When you combine these new capabilities and the technical expertise at our Longmont campus, with our Milan facility’s lentiviral vector platform and its extensive gene therapy CDMO experience, we can now support virtually any viral vector program being developed anywhere in the world.”

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