Pharma Focus Asia

AGC Biologics collaborates with Molecular Partners AG to develop the DARPin® anti-COVID-19 program

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Leading global company specializing in contract manufacturing and development (CDMO), AGC Biologics , has partnered with clinical stage biotechnology company Molecular Partners AG , to develop a new class of protein-based therapeutic products that are custom-made under the name DARPin®. AGC Biologics and Molecular Partners AG will work together to develop their multi-specific DARPin anti-COVID-19 program, MP0420. Molecular Partners AG plans to launch clinical studies for this program in the second half of 2020.

AGC Biologics will manufacture the product at scales of 100 liters and 1,000 liters, which will be suitable for development and initial global supply for patients in need. Based on preliminary efficacy data, subcutaneous administration of MP0420 could act both as a treatment for an existing viral infection and as a possible preventive therapy.

“Guaranteeing manufacturing capacity is a crucial step in advancing our new DARPin antiviral program in order to prepare it for clinical use. We are firmly committed to addressing patients as quickly as possible, based on our solid pre-clinical data which demonstrate unparalleled effectiveness in neutralizing live viruses, ”said Molecular Partners CEO Patrick Amstutz . "We are very encouraged by recent data supporting the potential of our unique trispecific approach targeting SARS-CoV-2. In fact, we believe that new therapies may prove essential to fight the global COVID-19 pandemic, ”he adds.

"AGC Biologics is delighted to be working with Molecular Partners on such an essential and innovative program," said AGC Biologics business manager Mark Womack . "We are very proud to work alongside Molecular Partners in the fight against COVID-19," he adds.

With state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities in Seattle , Washington , Boulder, Colorado , Copenhagen, Denmark, Heidelberg, Germany and Chiba , Japan, AGC Biologics has decades experience in the field of manufacturing and subcontracting development services, in particular in commercial market supplies validated by the FDA, PDMA and EMA. These first-class services have focused on proteins as a drug, such as antibody fragments, enzymes, vaccines and much more, but also plasmid DNA.

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