2021-07-10| Asia-Pacific

Sparx Therapeutics to Build a Massive Manufacturing Plant in China for Multi-Specific Antibody Production

by Tyler Chen
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Founded just around 3 years ago, a small Chicago biotech is prepared to build a huge production center in the Yangzhou Economic Zone, China, to increase manufacturing capacity for its antibody-drug pipelines.

On July 8th, Sparx Therapeutics announced the plan to establish a 1.2 million-square-foot plant in China and is estimated to begin operating at the end of 2022.


Increasing Capacity for Commercial Production

The new plant in China will include a 400,000-square-foot cGMP cleanroom and a total bioreactor capacity of 80,000-liters in separate cleanroom suites. The goal is to produce five commercial products simultaneously and fulfill the needs of chemistry, manufacturing, and controls (CMC) for over 12 programs in clinical trials.

“The planned facilities, with a total bioreactor capacity of 80,000-liters, will provide sufficient quantities of drug substances and drug products to support preclinical and clinical development and ultimately commercial launch”, said Dr. Gui-Dong Zhu, CEO of Sparx.


Targeting Solid Tumors with Multi-Specific Antibody

Sparx develops multi-specific antibody and antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) discovery platforms to target solid tumors such as gastric and colon cancer. 

Currently, the firm has three first-in-class candidates in the preclinical stage and three candidates ready for an investigational new drug (IND) application. Its R&D power has also attracted Eli Lilly’s distinguished research fellow, Dr. Victor Wroblewski, to join as the senior VP and the head of biology.

Aside from the expected plant in Yangzhou Economic Zone, Sparx has in-house facilities in Chicago and China to manufacture clinical and commercial drug substances but feels the need to expand as they couldn’t meet the development needs for antibody production, especially commercial use.

Related Article: Gilead’s Yescarta Becomes First CAR-T Therapy to Score Regulatory Approval in China


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