The Belgian Nuclear Research Center (SCK•CEN) and Global Morpho Pharma today announced that they have signed a memorandum of understanding relative to the production and distribution of Good Manufacturing Practice grade therapeutics medical radionuclides.
Under the terms of the agreement, SCK•CEN will join Global Morpho Pharma as shareholder, innovation partner and therapeutic medical radionuclides manufacturer. Global Morpho Pharma will focus initially on the production and distribution of industrial quantities of non-carrier added Lutetium 177 (nca Lu-177) and Actinium 225 free of long lived impurities. These medical radionuclides are instrumental for a novel class of cancer therapeutic currently under clinical development or already commercially available.
In order to establish the European footprint of Global Morpho Pharma, SCK•CEN and IRE ELiT (the innovation subsidiary of IRE) are joining forces to establish a reliable supply of GMP grade nca Lu-177 in Europe and beyond.
SCK•CEN Business Development Director Dr. Yves Boland stated: “We are excited by this new partnership which strengthens SCK•CEN’s position as a key player in medical radionuclides production. The unique infrastructures and knowhow of SCK•CEN in the nuclear field together with the experience and market reach of Global Morpho Pharma’s team are a winning combination. We are also delighted to partner with IRE ELiT and capitalize on their radio-pharmaceutical expertise to bring lutetium to the market. It is another proof of the dynamism of the Belgian radio-pharma eco-system. ”
IRE ELiT CEO Erich Kollegger said: “This is another opportunity for IRE ELiT to work together with SCK•CEN and increase our expertise on the radio-pharmaceutical market. Lu-177 is the natural companion of Ga-68, for which we have recently received approval of our Galli Ad Ge/Ga-68 Generator. As such, it fits perfectly into IRE ELiT’s strategy to be present on the main radionuclides markets used for Theranostic applications.”
Global Morpho Pharma’s General Manager Dr. Richard Zimmermann added : “This agreement reinforces the global footprint of Global Morpho Pharma with capabilities in both North America and Europe, following the integration in the network of the US company Spectron mrc, llc announced in June 2018. By adding a renowned actor of the nuclear community to its network and a collaboration with a recognized player of the radio-pharmaceutical sector, Global Morpho Pharma is re-enforcing its commitment to the reliable supply of next generation therapeutics radionuclides and its long term strategy to expand its worldwide network. Thus Global Morpho Pharma continues further vertical integration along the various stages of the value chain of medical radionuclides and radio-pharmaceuticals production.”
About nca Lu-177
Non-carrier added lutetium 177 is a beta (electron) emitter with an intermediate range of action in organic tissues. It’s intermediate range of actions together with the absence of long lived radioactive impurities make it a user friendly efficient isotope for the treatment of a range of cancers once coupled with vector molecules targeting specific cancerous cell biomarkers. The pipeline of nca Lu-177 based molecules is rich and includes treatment in advanced clinical trial stages for prostate, kidney and neuro-endocrine tumors to name a few.
Actinium 225 is an alpha (helium nucleus) emitter with a short range of action which deposits a large amount of energy in surrounding tissues. It is therefore very efficient at creating what is known as double strand DNA damages in cancerous cells which result in an efficient destruction of these cells. Once attached to a vector selectively targeting cancerous cell, it will primarily deposit its energy in the direct neighborhood of these cells. There are a range of new treatments in pre-clinical and clinical trial stages which requires a reliable supply of Ac-225 free of long lived radioactive impurities such as Ac-227.
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