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NJII and Pall collaborate to address biomanufacturing technology and workforce development challenges.
New Jersey Innovation Institute (NJII), a New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) Corporation, has signed an industry participation agreement with Pall Corporation to support the development of its BioPharmaceutical Innovation iLab, according to a March 19, 2019 press release. The partnership will support two centers at NJII that will advance the manufacturing of new cell and gene therapies: the Cell and Gene Therapy Development Center and the Center of Advanced Biologic Manufacturing.
The NJII Cell and Gene Therapy Development Center will focus on addressing manufacturing process technologies and workforce development challenges faced by the industry. This Center will serve as a dedicated platform where the industry can access shared resources including equipment, expertise, and project work to find innovative solutions to manufacturing needs for biologic medicines, such as cell-based immunotherapies.
The NJII Center of Advanced Biologic Manufacturing, meanwhile, will address challenges of mass production through continuous processing and viral vector manufacturing. This Center will bring big pharma, emerging biotechnology companies, technology developers, and instrumentation companies together with regulatory agencies to pioneer new techniques and train those who will take the technology into commercial practice at an industrial scale.
State-of-the-art bioreactors, continuous chromatography units, and an acoustic wave separator have been provided by Pall to both NJII Centers as part of the agreement. Pall experts will also be deployed to support the experimental program and provide training on the new equipment.
“Scaling up the manufacture of gene therapies and gene-modified cell therapies to industrial levels is one of the biggest challenges in modern medicine manufacture,” said Peter Levison, Pall’s executive director of business development, in the press release. “If we’re going to tackle the industry’s productivity challenges, we need to think smart and invest in finding innovative manufacturing solutions, for example, through continuous bioprocessing. NJII is doing remarkable work in this area and we’re very excited to partner with them on this innovative program.”
Pall’s partnership with NJII is the latest in a series of investments by the company to advance continuous manufacturing and the production of gene therapies. In November 2018, a partnership between Pall, Cobra Biologics, and the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult was awarded an Innovate UK grant worth nearly $2 million to investigate continuous manufacturing for gene therapies; the results, when complete, may complement NJII’s work in the United States.