In addition to cell therapy contract development and manufacturing organizations (CDMOs), there are numerous companies that offer CDMO services for other types of biologics. Biologics are defined as human, animal, or microorganism derived products used for therapeutic purposes. In addition to cell therapies, biologics can include vaccines, blood and blood products, human cells and tissues used for transplantation, and gene therapies.
While the services provided by these companies are not cell therapy CMDO services, these companies should be monitored, because their manufacturing capabilities and experience with biologics may position them expand into cell therapy CDMO services in the future.
For example, KBI Biopharma, Inc. (KBI) started as a traditional pharmaceutical CDMO in 1996, then signed an agreement with Merck & Co., Inc. (known as Merck in the U.S. and Canada) to acquire Merck’s microbial process development and manufacturing operations in Boulder, Colorado, in May 2014. That expanded its KBI’s manufacturing operations from pharmaceuticals to biologics. Next, KBI acquired the laboratory and manufacturing facilities of Opexa Therapeutics in February 2017 to expand into cell therapy manufacturing.
A similar path was followed by WuXi PharmaTech, which began as a Shanghai, China based pharmaceutical CDMO. Originally, AppTec Laboratory Services operated as a service provider for the biopharmaceutical and medical device industries, offering testing, contract research and development, and biologics cGMP manufacturing services. By acquiring AppTec Laboratory Services in January 2008, WuXi PharmaTech formed WuXi Apptec, expanding its reach into U.S. biopharmaceutical CDMO services. With later construction of three manufacturing facilities in Philadelphia, WuXi AppTec expanded into a cell therapy CDMO services.
Of course, WuXi PharmaTech is a massive global conglomerate with net revenue over $3.27 billion, so diversification was part of its growth strategy. WuXi PharmTech has acquired dozens of global companies since it was founded in 2000. In contrast, KBI Biopharma is a smaller market player who is making a strategic choice to specialize in cell therapy manufacturing as a service offerings.
As described in these examples, the strategy of expanding from biopharmaceutical to biological to cell therapy CDMO services is a logical progression.
Below, a list of companies providing CDMO services for biologics is presented. While these companies are not cell therapy CDMOs, they are operating in “close proximity” to the market and could potentially expand into it.
List of CDMOs Specializing in Biologics Manufacturing
- Avid Bioservices
- Boehringer Ingelheim
- Catalent Pharma Solutions
- CMC Biologics
- Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies
- IDT Biologika
- JHL Biotech
- Millipore Sigma
- Samsung Biologics
- Rentschler Biotechnlogie GmbH