According to the company, this will be Europe's first industrial-scale pharmaceutical facility dedicated to the production of lead-212 based radioligand therapies.
Julien Dodet, CEO of Orano Med, said: "We are convinced that radioligand therapies will soon become an essential tool in the fight against cancer. As the phase 2 clinical trial of our most advanced drug AlphaMedix nears completion, we are building a global industrial platform to ensure the large-scale production and distribution of these potential treatments."
Targeted alpha therapy with lead-212 combines the natural ability of biological molecules to target cancer cells with the short-range cell-killing capabilities of lead-212 generated alpha emissions.
The development of these therapies has been hampered by the difficulty to manufacture on an industrial scale, with Orano Med’s new facility marking a ‘major step’ towards making these treatments available to cancer patients, the company said.
With over 3,000 m² of floor space, the space will represent an investment of €29 million and generate 25 jobs.
Orano Med is also due to inaugurate a similar facility this year in Indianapolis to serve the US market.
This combined capacity will enable Orano Med to manufacture 10,000 doses a year as of 2025, with the aim of producing ten times that number by the end of the decade.
Guillaume Dureau, vice-president projects and innovation R&D and nuclear medicine, added: "The ATLab in Onnaing is a very important step in our development strategy and is situated at the very heart of the industrial fabric of the Valenciennes metropolitan area and the Hauts-de-France region. The expansion of our production capacity in the radiopharmaceutical field is part of a drive to revitalize our country’s industrial and economic fabric."
The construction of ATLab Valenciennes is supported by the Hauts de France region and the Valenciennes metropolitan area.
The project has also been selected under the France 2030 plan following the call for ‘industrialization and health capacities 2030" projects and will receive public support of almost €3.8 million.
The announcement ceremony was attended by Orano Med executives as well as local and state officials, including Xavier Jouanin, mayor of Onnaing, Laurent Degallaix, president of Valenciennes Métropole and Lise Alter, managing director of the French Health Innovation Agency.