Arranta Bio, part of Recipharm’s biologics business, signed a contract with MIT to develop a continuous manufacturing technology for mRNA therapeutics. The contract is part of the FDA’s initiative to have a fully integrated, continuous manufacturing production line for mRNA vaccines, which the agency is funding through a contract to MIT.

Enabling rapid manufacturing capacity will provide faster readiness and reaction to new pandemic threats, according to Marc Funk, CEO, Recipharm.

The three-year project is expected to accelerate the deployment not only of mRNA vaccines for rapid response against future pandemics but also of novel mRNA therapeutics to patients around the world. mRNA therapeutics are being researched to support the fight against rare, diseases, infectious viruses (influenza, Zika), and cancers.

Addressing current challenges in continuous manufacturing

The project will address current challenges in the continuous manufacturing of mRNA therapeutics: under the terms of the agreement, the FDA will directly support and inform the advances to enable Arranta Bio and MIT to push the boundaries of current manufacturing and testing processes, noted Funk, adding that our “work can enable new vaccines and therapies to be deployed quickly and be economically viable for patients in need.”

“This project leverages advances made at MIT in the continuous pharmaceutical manufacturing made over the last 10+ years, as well as more recent advances in the modular manufacturing of vaccines and other biotherapeutics,” said Richard D. Braatz, center director at MIT. “MIT is pleased to collaborate with Arranta Bio and researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Pennsylvania State University to advance technologies for continuous mRNA manufacturing.”

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