With continuous manufacturing, raw materials used to produce oral medicines (tablets) are fed into a single, continuously running machine that includes real-time release testing and can create commercial-ready tablets in just one day, as opposed to weeks with the traditional multi-step, multi-location batch production process. Continuous manufacturing is suited for the production of precision medicines and those with breakthrough therapy designations where development timelines may be short and patient need is urgent.
The new facility will include all aspects of the continuous manufacturing process, including continuous blending, wet or dry granulation, fluid bed drying, tableting and coating operations. Spare capacity will be offered to third parties interested in this manufacturing process.
"This agreement enables Hovione to be at the forefront of an important evolution toward the use of continuous manufacturing and positions us as a reliable and innovative source for the production of new medicines," said Filipe Gaspar, vice president R&D at Hovione. "Like Vertex, we view continuous manufacturing as an important scientific advance and an important advance for patients, as the technology will allow us to run manufacturing and process development in parallel with clinical studies to more rapidly bring new medicines to those who need them."
"Hovione and Vertex have been strong collaborators for more than a decade and share a commitment to innovative science," added Guy Villax, chief executive officer of Hovione. "This agreement adds to a recently announced $24 million investment in our New Jersey facility. The expansion will double Hovione's development and manufacturing capacity at that site."