WuXi AppTec Buys British CDMO Oxgene

11.03.2021 - China’s WuXi AppTec has acquired British gene therapy CDMO Oxgene, making the Oxford-based company a wholly owned subsidiary of the contract testing, development and manufacturing business unit for cell and gene therapies, WuXi Advanced Therapies. With the sale, Oxgene will retain its name.

The Chinese group said it will leverage the Oxford-based firm, which designs and develops scalable gene therapy technologies, to offer CDMO services for cell and gene therapies ranging from early genetic molecular research and discovery to global scale manufacturing.

In making its first European acquisition, WuXi AppTec told US pharma journal Fierce Pharma it was interested in Oxgene’s proprietary adeno-associated viral (AAV) and lentiviral manufacturing expertise. The British firm’s TESSA technology, used for AAV production, is said to provide a plasmid-free alternative for large-scale clinical manufacturing.

According to Oxgene, its lentiviral-focused XLenti system, based on its SnapFast plasmid technology, offers improved yield, quality and safety. The British company touts its expertise in designing DNA sequences, optimizing expression of proteins, developing cell lines, and improving viral delivery systems. WuXi AppTec said the processes should simplify cell and gene therapy manufacturing and save costs.

With its new UK arm, WuXi Advanced Therapies now has a presence on three continents. In addition to Europe and China, it also has a berth in the US (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania).

Author: Dede Williams, Freelance Journalist