Emergent BioSolutions and TLV form new joint venture to develop flu vaccines

Emergent BioSolutions Inc. (NYSE:EBS), a U.S.-based developer and manufacturer of vaccines and antibody therapies, today launched its Singapore operations. The opening event included a ceremonial unveiling of EPIC Bio Pte Ltd that took place at Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory (TLL) in Singapore. EPIC Bio is a recently formed Singapore-based joint venture with Temasek Life Sciences Ventures Pte Ltd (TLV), to develop, manufacture, and commercialize pandemic influenza vaccines and therapeutics.

“We have made strides in progressing a broad spectrum influenza vaccine candidate designed to provide maximum coverage of influenza strains.”

"Emergent is pleased to enhance its presence in Asia-Pacific with initiatives that help carry out our corporate mission -- to protect life," said Fuad El-Hibri, Chairman and CEO of Emergent BioSolutions. "First, by broadening the scope of Emergent's Singapore operations, not only will it continue to make our present and future biodefense products available, but it will also provide support to the company's ongoing tuberculosis program as well as explore manufacturing and business development opportunities in the region. Second, by forming EPIC Bio with TLV, Emergent leverages important technology and product development know how to complement TLL's research and development efforts in pandemic influenza."

"Emergent BioSolutions' expansion of its Singapore office and R&D activities here attest to Singapore's importance as a core site in Asia for both leading pharmaceutical and biotech companies. In leveraging Singapore's integrated research network and business capabilities, companies are well-positioned to develop new therapies and business models for the future today," said Mr. Quek Swee Kuan, Assistant Managing Director, Singapore Economic Development Board.

"Emergent BioSolutions provides vaccines that protect our servicemen and women in the U.S. military against the threat of anthrax," said Louis Mazel, Deputy Chief of Mission, U.S. Embassy in Singapore. "We are pleased that they are also involved in the development of products for other deadly diseases including tuberculosis and influenza supporting their corporate mission of protecting life."

The event also featured Professor Jimmy Kwang, Senior Principal Investigator at Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory, who presented current TLL efforts on influenza research. "The field of influenza vaccine and therapeutic research is challenging," said Professor Kwang. "We have made strides in progressing a broad spectrum influenza vaccine candidate designed to provide maximum coverage of influenza strains."

Emergent's Singapore office will provide support to EPIC Bio as the joint venture builds out its operations. EPIC Bio plans to begin clinical manufacturing of a broad spectrum influenza vaccine candidate in 2011 and to initiate a clinical trial in 2012.

Dr. Tan Guong Ching, Chairman of TLV, and representatives from the American Chamber of Commerce in Singapore were also present at the event. In a separate celebration, Emergent held a ribbon cutting ceremony at its Singapore office attended by Emergent executives, and members of the diplomatic and business community.


Emergent BioSolutions Inc.


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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