Officials at GE Healthcare say the company will provide China-based Xiangxue Pharmaceutical (XPH) with a FlexFactory™ for cell therapy. The system, expected to be operational in March 2019, is a semiautomated end-to-end manufacturing platform to help scale up, digitize, and accelerate manufacturing processes for cell therapy clinical trials and future commercialization.
According to GE Healthcare, this project marks the first application of FlexFactory for cell immunotherapy drugs based on high-affinity and high-specificity T-cell receptors (TCRs). XPH is focused on cancer treatments based on a new-generation TCR T-cell therapy.
Cell therapy is one of the most rapidly advancing life science areas for basic cancer research and clinical applications. However, the manufacturing process is complex and is a challenge for companies to produce cell therapies at industrial scale. FlexFactory for cell therapy was developed to help companies achieve stable, safe, and scalable manufacturing of cell therapy products, notes Qing Li, general manager, GE Healthcare Life Sciences, Greater China, who says the platform was designed to help shorten the commercialization cycle through accelerated translation from scientific research to clinical trials to industrial-scale production. GE Healthcare will also provide XPH with training services, process development, flexible cell processing equipment, and digital connectivity solutions.
“As a new breakthrough in cancer treatment, the importance of cell immunotherapy has gained consensus by the global medical industry, offering great hope for humans to combat cancer. As we continue development in precision medicine, we look forward to long-term collaboration with GE Healthcare, using digital and semiautomated technologies as well as comprehensive analytical methods, to help us more efficiently produce treatments for patients,” stated Yonghui Wang, chairman of XPH.
“With a high concentration of healthcare companies and medical resources, Guangzhou is currently implementing the IAB Plan to advance development in information technology, artificial intelligence, and biotechnology industries. GE Healthcare and XPH are committed to creating a world-leading cell therapy manufacturing platform in the Guangzhou Development Zone. Thus, this close strategic partnership helps establish a new world-leading bioindustry ecosystem in Guangzhou.”