Coming into the light

Lonza signs Light Path discovery agreement with LegoChem to provide preclinical material of novel therapeutic compound

Jeffrey Bouley
BASEL, Switzerland—Lonza announced in March an agreementwith Korean biotechnology company LegoChem Biosciences Inc. for the custommaterial production of a monoclonal antibody that will be used for in-vivo proof-of-concept studies for their technologyplatform development.
 
 
Under this agreement, Lonza will produce preclinicalmaterial using Light Path Discovery Services at its applied protein servicesfacility in Cambridge, U.K. The deal is important in both the short-term andlong-term goals of LegoChem, Lonza's Sze Guan Chu tells ddn.
 
 
"In the short term, LegoChem Biosciences needed custommaterial in a short timeframe to meet their clinical development timelines,"says Chu, who is in the Asia sales and business development arm of Lonza'sDevelopment Services operation. As for the long term, "LegoChem Biosciences isin the process of developing a new technology platform and will need materialfor future proof-of-concept studies."
 
And as for Lonza's particular strength in this deal, Chusays, "Lonza brings a fully developed and optimized GS Expression System toallow for high titers of material to be delivered in a reduced timeline.LegoChem Biosciences needed someone to produce a relatively large amount ofmaterial in a short period of time. Their timeline was a critical factor to theadvancement of their development milestones. Lonza's Light Path offering iswell-suited to customers that meet this criteria."
 
 
Lonza's Light Path Custom Material Services supportsprojects in their early phase, providing cGMP product within 11 months,according to the company. In addition, Lonza's Light Path Discovery Servicereportedly provides non-GMP product in six to 10 weeks to support customers inthe discovery-testing phase. Since the launch of Light Path in early 2011,Lonza says it has seen an increased demand for this offering, which is focusedon a reduced timeline to IND filing. Light Path allows customers to reach theirclinical milestones more efficiently, the company maintains.
 
"Lonza's Light Path Discovery Services were specificallydesigned with the demands of preclinical assessment in mind," said Janet White,head of Lonza's Development Services, in the news release about the deal."Lonza has built a strong reputation for CMO excellence. Today, we're alsofocusing efforts on supporting emerging biotechnology innovation at every stageof development to allow each customer the best chance for clinical success."
 
"We have chosen to work with Lonza on this important projectbecause of their reliability and solid reputation in field of mammaliandevelopment," said Dr. Woo Sung Ho, biology director and vice president ofLegoChem, in the official statement about the deal.
Chu says the two companies have not worked together before,and were introduced through a Korean consultant.
 
In other recent news from Lonza Development Services, lateFebruary saw an announcement of another early-stage development deal, withLonza and San Diego-based Eclipse Therapeutics Inc. announcing an agreement forthe production of Eclipse's novel cancer therapeutic antibody, ET-101, usingLight Path Development Services. ET-101 is under investigation for theinhibition of the growth of cancer stem cells. Under the agreement, Lonza willproduce Phase I clinical materials at its development and manufacturing facilityin Slough, United Kingdom.
 

 
Lonza and Eclipse Therapeutics announce development andmanufacturing agreement
 
 
BASEL, Switzerland—Lonza and Eclipse Therapeutics announcedat the end of February an agreement for the production of Eclipse's novelcancer therapeutic antibody, ET-101, using Light Path DevelopmentServices. 
 
 
ET-101 is a novel therapeutic antibody designed to targetcancer stem cells. Eliminating cancer stem cells, in conjunction with othertherapies that address the tumor bulk, represents a new cancer treatmentparadigm that could offer a distinct advantage over existing strategies, and asolution for chemoresistance, according to Eclipse.
 
 
Under the agreement, Lonza will produce Phase I clinicalmaterial at its development and manufacturing facility in Slough, U.K.
 
 
"Lonza's best-in-class antibody manufacturing capabilitieswill greatly support our development strategy to deliver the highest qualityand most effective therapeutics targeting cancer stem cells. Moving intocell-line development and subsequent manufacturing represents an importantmilestone for Eclipse," says Dr. Christopher Reyes, chief scientific officer ofEclipse.

Jeffrey Bouley

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