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Bristol Myers Squibb & Cellares Forge $380 Mn Deal for Cell Therapy Manufacturing

Written by : Aishwarya Sarthe

April 24, 2024

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The deal entails a worldwide capacity reservation and supply agreement to bolster the manufacture of CAR T cell therapies.

In a significant move, Bristol Myers Squibb and Cellares, the first Integrated Development and Manufacturing Organization (IDMO), have inked a worldwide capacity reservation and supply agreement valued at up to $380 million. 

The deal encompasses a worldwide capacity reservation and supply agreement aimed at advancing the manufacture of CAR T cell therapies.

Under the collaboration, Cellares, touted as the first Integrated Development and Manufacturing Organization (IDMO) dedicated to cell therapy manufacturing, will optimize, automate, and tech-transfer select CAR T cell therapies onto its automated and high-throughput manufacturing platform, the Cell Shuttle. 

Explaining the significance of the collaboration, Lynelle B Hoch, president, Cell Therapy Organization, Bristol Myers Squibb, said, "The agreement with Cellares is our latest step forward in support of our comprehensive strategy to unlock the full potential of CAR T therapy to deliver transformative treatments to as many patients as possible, as quickly as possible."

This agreement builds upon the existing collaborations between Bristol Myers Squibb and Cellares, reinforcing their shared commitment to advancing cell therapy manufacturing. In August 2023, Bristol Myers Squibb participated in Cellares’ Series C financing, signaling its confidence in Cellares’ technology and mission.

A Leap Forward in Cell Therapy Manufacturing

Cell therapies, with their promise of personalized treatment approaches, are revolutionizing healthcare. 

However, their manufacturing poses operational and technical challenges due to the complex nature of cell-based therapies. This collaboration addresses these challenges by leveraging Cellares’ innovative technology to enhance manufacturing efficiency and scalability.

Sharing thoughts, Fabian Gerlinghaus, CEO & cofounder, Cellares, said, "This agreement with Bristol Myers Squibb is aligned with our strategy of establishing a global network of high-throughput, automated Smart Factories to meet the growing worldwide demand for cell therapies."

Furthermore, by deploying Cell Shuttle and Cell Q systems in Smart Factories across the US, EU, and Japan, the collaboration aims to accelerate the commercial-scale manufacturing and deployment of cell therapies, ultimately benefiting patients worldwide.

Cellares recently achieved a significant milestone by obtaining current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) certification for its Cell Shuttle factory-in-a-box platform. 

This milestone underscores Cellares' commitment to meeting the highest safety, efficacy, and consistency standards in cell therapy manufacturing. The cGMP certification assures regulatory compliance and reinforces patient safety in the production process.

In light of these developments, Cellares is poised to advance its production capabilities further. The release of the new version of its Cell Shuttle platform indicates progress toward clinical product readiness by the end of the year. 


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