Indian Transgene sells biosimilar to German TSS Export

Biosimilars/News | Posted 09/12/2011 post-comment0 Post your comment

India-based biotech company Transgene Biotek Limited (Transgene) announced on 24 November 2011 the sale of technology for biosimilar recombinant human erythropoietin (rh-EPO) to TSS Export GmbH FZE, part of the Germany-based TSS group, for US$5 million (Indian Rupees 260 million).

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Erythropoietin is a hormone produced by the kidney that promotes the formation of red blood cells in the bone marrow.

The technology transfer and sale is expected to be completed within 5-6 months, according to the company’s filing with the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Dr K K Rao, Managing Director of Transgene, said, ‘this transaction fulfils the pledge we made earlier this year to focus on revenue generation whilst monetising the sale of underutilised bio-generic drug assets, those developed by the company during the last 7–8 years, but which we now feel do not fit into our new agenda for sustained growth.’

Transgene recently started commercial manufacturing of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), an omega-3 fatty acid, which has seen explosive growth in the nutraceuticals and health supplements market.

The company is in the process of expanding its in-house infrastructure to augment production capacities for DHA and other active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), and hopes to start commercial manufacturing of its second API, called Tacrolimus. Transgene is in discussion with a number of manufacturers in Europe and North America for strategic partnerships to manufacture and distribute these products, according to the filing.

With the market for erythropoietin set to become very competitive, the management of Transgene has decided to monetise some of the dormant technologies through either out-licensing or strategic partnerships within and outside India.

The company had earlier out-licensed two of its technologies–a recombinant Hepatitis B Vaccine to vaccine producer Serum Institute of India, and more recently Orlistat to Indian generics giant Dr Reddy’s.

Source: BSE, Transgene

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