Kytopen Partners with Cambridge Consultants on Flowfect

Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News | January 28, 2020

MIT spin-out company Kytopen signed a deal with Cambridge Consultants to co-develop the FlowfectTM system, a scalable process that reportedly yields billions of engineered cells in minutes. The product will streamline the engineering of a wide array of human and human-derived cells for use in next-generation cell therapies, with the goal of expanding access to new medicines, says Paulo Garcia, CEO and co-founder of Kytopen.

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INDUSTRIAL IMPACT

Nexeo Plastics and Earth Renewable Technologies Sign Agreement to Distribute BioCompounds in North America

Nexeo Plastics | March 02, 2022

Nexeo Plastics, a leading global thermoplastics resin distributor, has announced an agreement with Earth Renewable Technologies, Inc. (ERT), a biotechnology company, to distribute ERT’s BioCompounds in Canada and the United States. “We are extremely pleased to collaborate with ERT to increase the slate of sustainable products we offer our customers. ERT’s BioCompounds complement the products we already carry and help us close the gap in our renewable solutions line card.” Arturo Hoyo, Nexeo Plastics’ Vice President of Product Line Management Compostable, biobased and/or biodegradable, ERT’s plant-based BioCompounds perform like conventional plastics and are often ideal for a wide range of uses, including single-use and one-time niche applications, such as bags, bottles and cutlery. “We want to make the world more sustainable by improving the availability of sustainable materials that can perform like plastic,” said ERT President Kim Fabri. “Nexeo Plastics’ reach in North America, their understanding of the value of sustainable material, and their growing portfolio of sustainable products makes them an ideal partner for us.” About Nexeo Plastics Nexeo Plastics is a leading global thermoplastic resins distributor, representing quality products from world-class suppliers, and serving a diverse customer base across North America, Latin America, Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia. From material selection assistance to identifying supply chain and inventory solutions, we go beyond traditional logistics to provide value-added services across many industries, including automotive, healthcare, packaging, wire and cable, 3D printing and more. About Earth Renewable Technologies Earth Renewable Technologies, Inc. (ERT) was founded in 2009 with the mission of replacing plastic packaging with biodegradable materials. ERT patented SFRP (Short Fiber Reinforced Polymer), a pioneering technology capable of drastically modifying the performance of biopolymers and delivering previously unknown applications for these materials. Since then, the company has been introducing new technologies to the market, revolutionizing the biopolymer market and allowing companies to truly move towards a circular economy.

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INDUSTRIAL IMPACT

GeoVax Announces $10 Million Private Placement

GeoVax, Inc. | January 15, 2022

GeoVax Labs, Inc. a biotechnology company specializing in developing human vaccines and cancer immunotherapies, announced that it has entered into a securities purchase agreement with a single institutional investor to raise approximately $10.0 million through the private placement of 707,484 shares of common stock, 2,360,000 pre-funded warrants to purchase common stock and accompanying warrants to purchase an aggregate of up to 3,067,484 shares of common stock. Each share of common stock (or pre-funded warrant in lieu thereof) is being sold together with an accompanying warrant at a combined effective purchase price of $3.26. The warrants will be exercisable immediately at an exercise price of $3.26 per share and will expire five years from the date of issuance. The closing of the private placement is expected to occur on January 19, 2022, subject to the satisfaction of certain customary closing conditions set forth in the securities purchase agreement. Maxim Group LLC is acting as placement agent for the offering. The shares of common stock, pre-funded warrants and warrants described above have not been registered under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and may not be offered or sold in the United States absent registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or an applicable exemption from such registration requirements. The securities were offered only to accredited investors. Pursuant to a registration rights agreement with the investor, the Company has agreed to file one or more registration statements with the SEC covering the resale of the shares of common stock and the shares issuable upon exercise of the pre-funded warrants and warrants. This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy these securities, nor shall there be any sale of these securities in any state or jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such state or jurisdiction. About GeoVax GeoVax Labs, Inc. is a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing human vaccines and immunotherapies against infectious diseases and cancer using novel proprietary platforms. GeoVax’s product pipeline includes two ongoing Phase 2 clinical trials of GEO-CM04S1 for COVID-19 as a universal booster vaccine to mRNA vaccines authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and as a primary vaccine for use in immunocompromised patients. In addition to GEO-CM04S1 for COVID-19, GeoVax is developing GEO-CM02 as a pan-coronavirus vaccine. The Company is also conducting a Phase 1/2 clinical trial of Gedeptin® for treatment of head and neck cancer. Gedeptin® has been granted orphan drug status by the FDA. Additional research and development programs include preventive vaccines against Zika Virus, hemorrhagic fever viruses and malaria, as well as immunotherapies for multiple solid tumors. The Company’s portfolio of wholly owned, co-owned, and in-licensed intellectual property stands at over 70 granted or pending patent applications spread over 20 patent families.

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INDUSTRIAL IMPACT

IFF to Acquire Health Wright Products

IFF | February 17, 2022

IFF announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Health Wright Products, LLC (HWP), a leader in formulation and capsule manufacturing for the dietary supplement industry. Founded in 1995, HWP is located in Clackamas, Oregon, USA, and is a privately-owned and long-time business partner of IFF’s Health & Biosciences probiotics business. HWP is a global leader in the consumer Health and Nutrition industries, providing the highest-quality nutritional supplements. Using state-of-the-art processes and equipment, HWP manufactures custom formulations, and delivers encapsulation and packaging to meet the industries’ more exacting requirements for probiotic products. With over 165,000 ft2 (15,328 m2) of manufacturing space, the company generated approximately $100 million in annual revenue in 2021 and employed over 225 people who will continue with the company after the sale. The acquisition will bring formulation and finished format capabilities to IFF’s Health & Biosciences probiotics, natural extracts and botanicals businesses, allowing for innovation in custom formulation and combination products through joint capabilities. “Today’s announcement is driven by our commitment to enhance long-term value to our partners and customers. Producing thousands of unique and complex formulations for the industry’s most trusted brands, Health Wright Products formulation and finished format abilities will allow us to develop new and customized solutions and formats for a broad base of customers,” Simon Herriott, President, IFF’s Health & Biosciences division “We look forward to joining IFF’s Health & Biosciences division. Health Wright Products best-in-class quality manufacturing and formulation capabilities, combined with the strong biotech innovation pipeline of IFF’s Health & Biosciences, is an exciting proposition for our customers and employees,” said Mark Wright, President, Health Wright Products. The sale is expected to close in the first quarter of 2022, subject to customary closing conditions, and regulatory clearances. Financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed. About Health Wright Products, LLC. At Health Wright Products, a contract manufacture of dietary supplements, Quality, Service and Value have been the driving principles in our commitment to exceeding customers’ expectations. We partner with brands committed to the same driving principles for themselves and their customers. As a global industry leader, we leverage innovation, technology, experience and capacity to offer better solutions to current and emerging products. Providing better health by Encapsulating Excellence. About IFF’s Health & Biosciences division Inspired by nature and distinguished by its world-class bioscience and microbiome capabilities, IFF’s Health & Biosciences division is a leading innovation partner for customers across a broad range of consumer product, industrial and agricultural sectors. IFF’s Health & Biosciences division works closely with our customers to enhance products – and their processes – to deliver safer, healthier and more sustainable solutions. Welcome to IFF At IFF an industry leader in food, beverage, health, biosciences and scent, science and creativity meet to create essential solutions for a better world – from global icons to unexpected innovations and experiences. With the beauty of art and the precision of science, we are an international collective of thinkers who partners with customers to bring scents, tastes, experiences, ingredients and solutions for products the world craves.

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Illumina Introduces New Pan-Cancer Companion Diagnostic to Match Patients with Rare Genetic Mutations to Targeted Therapy

Illumina | May 27, 2022

Illumina, Inc. (NASDAQ: ILMN), a global leader in DNA sequencing and array-based technologies, today announced the addition of a companion diagnostic (CDx) indication to its CE-marked in vitro diagnostic TruSight™ Oncology (TSO) Comprehensive (EU) test. This single test kit, recently launched across Europe, assesses multiple tumor genes and biomarkers to reveal the specific molecular profile of a patient's cancer. The CDx pan-cancer indication will allow identification of cancer patients with solid tumors who are positive for neurotrophic tyrosine receptor kinase (NTRK) gene fusions including NTRK1, NTRK2 or NTRK3, and may benefit from targeted therapy with Bayer's VITRAKVI® (larotrectinib), in accordance with the approved therapeutic labeling. TSO Comprehensive (EU) is a comprehensive genomic profiling (CGP) test which combines less prevalent biomarkers with more prevalent ones in the same test, using a single biopsy specimen. This helps maximize the chances of identifying an actionable alteration so that patients can be treated with a targeted therapy or enrolled into a clinical trial based on their unique tumor genomic profile. The addition of this first CDx claim specific to NTRK gene fusions, a rare but highly actionable biomarker, helps provide patients harboring this genetic alteration with an opportunity to benefit from larotrectinib, a genomically matched treatment. This CDx claim, developed in partnership with Bayer, is the first of a series under development, building upon Illumina's broad portfolio of oncology partnerships with industry leaders to advance cancer diagnostics and precision medicine, We continue to focus on unlocking the potential of new biomarkers to identify those most likely to benefit from precision medicines so that no patient is left behind—we don't want anyone to miss the opportunity to have their biomarker detected and gain access to a potentially life-saving therapy." Paula Dowdy, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Illumina for Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. Across most solid cancer tumor types, NTRK gene fusions can have a rare prevalence of 0.1-3% and can be challenging to detect as these genes fuse with many different partners, many of them previously unknown. Most CDx tests are specific to one type of cancer, but the NTRK claim is pan-cancer, enabling TSO Comprehensive (EU) to target multiple solid tumor types and a broad range of known and novel gene fusion partners across all three NTRK genes. This helps maximize the chances of finding actionable information from each patient's biopsy, to inform treatment with larotrectinib. Since it launched four years ago, VITRAKVI has demonstrated high response rates and highly durable responses in adults and children with TRK fusion cancer, The CE marking of Illumina's TSO Comprehensive (EU) assay inclusive of NTRK gene fusion detection for VITRAKVI is an important advance in enabling precision oncology for patients in Europe. Assays that enable precision oncology through comprehensive genomic testing are crucial for informing optimal treatment plans and help to ensure the best possible outcomes for cancer patients. We look forward to continuing to collaborate with Illumina to ensure that more patients are evaluated comprehensively inclusive of NTRK gene fusions." Christine Roth, Member of the Executive Committee of Bayer's Pharmaceuticals Division and Head of Bayer's Oncology Strategic Business Unit. The performance of TSO Comprehensive (EU) with NTRK fu­sions was assessed by analytical and clinical validation studies. Pooled data from three clinical trials, LOXO-TRK-14001 (NCT02122913), NAVIGATE (NCT02576431) and SCOUT (NCT02637687), were used to demonstrate the clinical effectiveness and safety of TSO Comprehensive (EU) in identifying NTRK1, NTRK2 and NTRK3 gene fusion positive patients who may be eligible for treatment with larotrectinib. The primary endpoint was the overall response rate (ORR), measured as the patient presenting either a complete response, a surgical complete response or partial response, to larotrectinib. We were delighted to be the clinical study partner for Illumina in this significant achievement of the first CDx claim for the TSO Comprehensive (EU) panel, TSO Comprehensive (EU) represents a powerful and versatile platform with a broad range of cancer-relevant content, and we recognize its value to our biopharma partners, for the development and delivery of companion diagnostics to further precision medicines." Professor Richard Kennedy, Global VP of Biomarker Development & Medical Director, Almac Diagnostic Services. Illumina has a growing pipeline of CDx claims under development through partnerships with pharmaceutical companies, which will be added to TSO Comprehensive (EU) following appropriate regulatory approvals. These CDx claims will help unlock groundbreaking targeted therapies and immunotherapies to make a difference in the lives of cancer patients. As Illumina continues to expand its broad portfolio of oncology partnerships with industry leaders, the company aims to advance cancer diagnostics and precision medicine. About Bayer Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the life science fields of health care and nutrition. Its products and services are designed to help people and planet thrive by supporting efforts to master the major challenges presented by a growing and aging global population. Bayer is committed to drive sustainable development and generate a positive impact with its businesses. At the same time, the Group aims to increase its earning power and create value through innovation and growth. The Bayer brand stands for trust, reliability and quality throughout the world. In fiscal 2021, the Group employed around 100,000 people and had sales of 44.1 billion euros. R&D expenses before special items amounted to 5.3 billion euros. About Illumina Illumina is improving human health by unlocking the power of the genome. Our focus on innovation has established us as a global leader in DNA sequencing and array-based technologies, serving customers in the research, clinical and applied markets. Our products are used for applications in the life sciences, oncology, reproductive health, agriculture and other emerging segments.

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Spotlight

Trispecific antibodies engage multiple targets in a single product. Learn more from Dr. Gary Nabel, Sanofi’s Chief Scientific Officer, about how we’re leading the new wave of potential treatment options for patients.

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