Lonza Biotec plant reworked to produce enzymes for ALTU-135
Kourim/Basel – Lonza Biotec s.r.o. (Kourim, Czech Republic), a specialist for microbial fermentation and manufacturing services, has completed the extension of its production plant in Kourim designed for the cGMP-compliant production of pharmaceutical enzymes for Altus Pharmaceuticals (Cambridge, US). The enzymes are used to treat cystic fibrosis patients with pancreatic insufficiency. The plant will host the production of Altus’ Phase III enzyme replacement product ALTU-135, consisting of the lipase, protease and amylase.
At the end of 2006, Altus charged Lonza with the production of ALTU-135, an orally administered formulation of the three enzymes. To start production in its FDA registered facility in Kourim, Lonza Biotec invested a45 million, one third of which came from state coffers, to beef up its downstream processing capabilities for filtration, large scale chromatography, lyophilization and spraydrying. At the same time, the Czech company established a technology transfer program with the technology owners, adding more than 25 new jobs in manufacturing and R & D to the site, which was acquired in 1992 from the former state-owned firm Spofa Kourim. Stefan Borgas, CEO of Lonza Group said: “Lonza is pleased at having completed the complex and challenging technical transformation seamlessly and within the agreed time frame. The collaboration with Altus is a very positive experience, and we are looking forward to our long-term partnership. We are excited to offer this new high-end capability to our growing number of global biopharmaceutical customers. Lonza Kourim is now the leading technology and manufacturing service provider for biopharmaceuticals in Eastern Europe.“