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GEN News Highlights : Jul 9, 2009

Medarex Taps Lonza for Biomanufacturing

Agreement includes production of antibodies and antibody drug conjugates.

Medarex obtained an option to work with Lonza as a provider of manufacturing services to support development and commercialization of its pipeline. Medarex is developing protein-based treatments and antibody drug conjugates (ADCs).

Lonza notes that this agreement marks the firm’s growing business model from a short-term product-by-product development and manufacturing arrangement toward more strategic long-term collaborations on a pipeline of products.

Under the terms of the deal, Lonza may provide process-development services for certain programs. The firm may also reserve manufacturing capacity for antibody and ADC programs at its facilities around the world. Lonza reportedly has the ability to produce ADCs in milligram to multiple kilogram quantities for both clinical and commercial supply.

Medarex’ pipeline is focused on oncology and immunology and comprises 10 antibody programs in clinical development. Its lead candidate is ipilimumab, which is being developed with Bristol-Myers Squibb in Phase III for various cancers.