Fujifilm says it is investing JPY14 billion ($130 million) to expand capacity at its U.S.- and U.K.-based BioCDMO (biopharma contract development manufacturing operation) facilities.

Fujifilm established BioCDMO as a standalone operating unit in February, separating the business from its pharmaceutical products division. The latest investments will include an injection of JPY3 billion ($30 million) to install mammalian cell culture bioreactors at the newly completed JPY10 billion ($90 million) cGMP production facility at Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies Texas. Another JPY1 billion ($10 million) will be spent expanding process development capacity at the Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies facility near its Billingham, U.K., site.

“Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies is committed to its vision of being leaders in the BioCDMO space,” said Steve Bagshaw, CEng, FIChemE, CEO Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies. “Our commitment is to transform the CDMO business through innovation and with our great people—providing long-term support to our partners fulfilling our core purpose as ‘Partners for Life—Advancing tomorrow’s medicines’.”

Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies Texas was funded in  part by the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) and is expected to start operating at the start of 2018. The facility will represent a manufacturing center of excellence for Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies’ Saturn mAb Platform™, and offer an initial cell culture capacity of 6000 L, with the potential to expand to 24,000 L of upstream capacity. Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies launched the Saturn mAb Platform last month as an extension to its Apollo™ platform, giving customers a complete gene-to-GMP service for monoclonal antibody (mAb) production. 

Investment in the U.K. facility will include setting up a dedicated Mammalian Cell Culture Center of Excellence with more than 10,000 square feet of laboratories equipped with automated bioreactors and chromatography systems. The facility is scheduled to start operating in mid 2017.

Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies now has three development and manufacturing facilities, sited at Billingham, Research Triangle Park, NC, and College Station, TX. The firm says the new facilities are key to its ongoing medical countermeasures and pandemic flu R&D with partners, including the Center for Innovation in Advanced Development and Manufacturing (CIADM) and BARDA.

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