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Southeast Asia’s First GMP-Compliant CDMO CellVec Enters Strategic Partnership With Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre

The partnership will see a collaboration between the regional specialist in viral vector manufacturing and the leading integrated cancer institution to facilitate the manufacture and supply of lentiviral vectors for cell-based immunotherapies.

Southeast Asia’s first GMP-compliant CDMO for viral vector manufacturing CellVec Pte Ltd announced in September a strategic partnership with Australia’s Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre (Peter Mac) to manufacture and supply lentiviral vectors for their in-house pipeline of cell-based immunotherapies for the treatment of cancer. In CellVec’s first strategic relationship with a leading Australian cancer research centre, the partnership connects the regional specialist in viral vector manufacturing and the leading integrated cancer institution, marking a significant milestone for the 4-year-old company in its mission of innovating for patient benefit by facilitating the development of cancer therapies amidst a long-standing global shortage of lentiviral vectors.

For Peter Mac, CellVec stood out as a partner for lentiviral vector supply based on the strong credentials and extensive prior experience of CellVec’s scientific team, led by Dr. Lucas Chan, in GMP-compliant lentiviral vector technologies and manufacturing. This, combined with the fact that they are co-located in the Asia Pacific region, presented an opportunity to partner locally to overcome bottlenecks in the supply of this crucial component of cell-based immunotherapy manufacturing.

Professor Simon Harrison, Director of the Centre of Excellence in Cellular Immunotherapy and a leading haematologist in the myeloma team at Peter Mac said, “This partnership with CellVec will underpin and enable a pipeline of high-potential research focused on developing the next generation of immunotherapies.”

Associate Professor Jane Oliaro, Chief Scientist for the Centre of Excellence in Cellular Immunotherapy Translation Laboratory at the Peter Mac said, “The enormous potential for cell-based immunotherapies to treat cancer simply cannot be realised without an assured supply of these vectors for our preclinical development program, and ultimately clinical application.”

“CellVec’s mission has always been to innovate for patient benefit, which means lowering the cost of treatments while pushing the boundaries of innovation so more people can access the treatment they need,” said Dr. Gayatri Sharma, Chief Commercial Officer of CellVec. “This marks a new chapter for us in the cancer space where our scientific and research capabilities can leave [a] great impact—we are honoured and excited to embark on this meaningful partnership with a world-class institution like Peter Mac to reach more cancer patients within Australia.”

Established in 2018 within the regional biotechnology hub of Singapore, CellVec was awarded GMP certification in 2020 by the Health Sciences Authority. Its state-of-the-art facility is designed in line with PIC/S, US FDA and EU GMP specifications, ensuring compliant biosafety containment and aseptic processing conditions for the manufacturing of viral vectors.

The company overcomes current technological bottlenecks in the upscale production of viral vectors by developing efficient systems and processes through its in-house established lentivirus-based CellVec Vector Platform. It comprises GMP-compatible molecular expression helper plasmids with sequences optimised in-house, third-generation self-inactivating lentiviral vectors, a GMP HEK293T Master Cell Bank and an efficient validated manufacturing process, which ensures improved production yields and high process consistency while adhering to the highest standards of manufacturing quality.

Dr. Lucas Chan, Chief Scientific Officer of CellVec said, “The partnership with Peter Mac underscores CellVec’s capability to support and accelerate clinical development of Advanced Cell and Gene Therapies and reaffirm Singapore’s position as an advanced hub for viral vector development, manufacture, logistics, and supply.

“Lentiviral vectors are a critical component in the generation of advanced cell and gene therapies such as CAR-T cells, but the complexity in manufacture impacts quality, cost and accessibility. Our CellVec Vector Platform seeks to address this by ensuring optimal process performance from helper and packaging construct expression to upstream and downstream processes, producing high titre, high purity and high yield vector products manufactured in compliance to GMP standards. This partnership would allow CellVec to leverage its developmental and manufacturing capabilities to produce safe and efficacious gene therapy vectors that support Peter Mac’s clinical development pipeline.” [APBN]

Source: CellVec Pte Ltd