In this week’s news, RS BioTherapeutics Partners with Recipharm for Product Characterization of RSBT-001, Scientists identify neurons needed to walk after paralysis, and more.

RSB BioTherapeutics, a company specializing in lung-related medical research, will partner with Recipharm to conduct product characterization for its investigational compound RSBT-001. 

“We are very pleased to partner with Recipharm for product characterization testing to support the development of RSBT-001 as a treatment for COPD. Recipharm is one of the world’s leading pharmaceutical Contract Development and Manufacturing Organizations (CDMOs) that is actively involved in the development of therapeutics for pulmonary and systemic diseases. We are excited to leverage their experience and expertise.” Justin Molignoni, Chief Strategy Officer of RS BioTherapeutics. 

Global pharmaceutical contract packaging organization (CPO), Tjoapack has invested in a new high-speed packaging line for pre-filled syringes and vials at its production facilities in both Europe and the US. The investment follows the acquisition of US healthcare packaging firm Pharma Packaging Solutions (PPS) last year.

John Tsang, a systems immunologist at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and his colleagues discovered that multiple different kinds of immune cells become altered in response to an immunological trigger such as a vaccination. They found that in healthy individuals after vaccination, subsets of immune cells increase and decrease in number while also changing their gene expression.

“These cells were not measured in the antigen-specific manner, meaning they’re not specific to particular pathogens. They’re just cells that circulate around,” said Tsang.

Scientists identify neurons needed to walk after paralysis. Scientists now have a better understanding of how our bodies respond to spinal cord injuries and the specific cells that may direct recovery. Researchers followed nine previously paralyzed patients undergoing a regimen of electrical stimulation who regained their ability to walk and compared their findings to mice that received a similar treatment. 

Over the past two decades, the Cambridge area has become a firm base for biotechs in the U.S. But to stay salient, the hub is expanding to the suburbs.

“I needed people who understood genetic technology and rare diseases. And when you look across the country or the world, where is there the most talent for genetic technology and rare diseases? That was Cambridge,” Chris Garabedian, CEO of Xontogeny, said. 

Also in the news

Global cell and gene therapy CDMO market is projected to witness a CAGR of 25% to reach $5 billion by 2025 . The growing pipeline of therapies are nearing regulatory decisions. Out of 1,220 ongoing clinical trials in 2020, 152 were in Phase 3 – FDA and EMA predicted approval of 10-20 cell and gene therapies each year by 2025.

CDMO trends

Fujifilm, which has been on a $1.6 billion expansion tear, will drop $188 million to build a cell culture media manufacturing facility in North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park.

Oxford Biomedica plc, a gene and cell therapy group, has appointed Dr. Frank Mathias as chief executive officer (CEO) and board director, effective March 2023.

Cambrex has acquired ingredient manufacturer Snapdragon Chemistry.