The US government is investing up to $75 million in London-listed Croda’s new plant to boost domestic production of a key ingredient of its vaccine mRNA, following the company’s supply of lipid nanoparticles. for BioNTech / Pfizer Covid-19 vaccination.
Croda, a specialty chemicals maker, is also investing up to $58 million in its new Pennsylvania location as it looks to expand its manufacturing capacity in the US.
The US Agency for Biomedical Advanced Research and Development, the agency responsible for preparing the country for health crises, and a division of the US Department of Defense are collaborating on investments. into the site, will support initiatives to prepare for any future pandemic.
The Covid vaccine is the first approved vaccine to be produced using mRNA technology, which is faster and more adaptable than traditional vaccine production techniques. The vaccine relies on bubbles of fat called lipid nanoparticles to provide the genetic code that teaches the immune system to recognize the virus.
Now, pharmaceutical companies including Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline, as well as the makers of the Covid mRNA vaccine, are testing other shots, such as the annual flu vaccine, using the technology. BioNTech and Moderna are among those investing in early-stage trials Using mRNA in cancer treatment.
Daniele Piergentili, president of Croda’s life sciences branch, said the technology “offers significant potential for safely and effectively delivering next-generation vaccines and therapeutics”.
“As a result of this investment, Croda will be able to expand its capabilities to develop and manufacture these key technology-enabled components. This will help ensure that the United States is well prepared for future medical emergencies and equipped to deliver cutting-edge treatments for some of the world’s most common illnesses. now,” he said.
Croda became involved in the production of lipid nanoparticles during the pandemic through the US corporation’s acquisition of Avanti Polar Lipids and has subsequently scaled up production significantly.
For the 2021-2022 fiscal year, Croda reported about $200 million in fat sales, driving growth in its life sciences division by 46 percent. When announcing its annual earnings, Croda predicted similar sales from lipstick this year.
The global lipid market is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate of nearly 9% between now and 2028, according to a forecast from Grand View Research.
The Pennsylvania plant will be Croda’s third mRNA facility, complementing an existing plant in Alabama acquired in the Avanti deal and another in the British town of Leek, where the UK government is investing. 15.9 million pounds.