Canadian life sciences companies Biovectra and Acuitas Therapeutics have signed a technology transfer service agreement for a Lipid Nanoparticle (LNP) delivery system used to make mRNA-based therapies.

Under the agreement, Biovectra will use Acuitas’ LNP technology platform on a non-exclusive basis to manufacture the therapies.

Through the collaboration, Biovectra will use a range of payloads to formulate Acuitas’ LNP for licensed therapeutic partners for clinical and commercial applications.

The Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine, Comirnaty, was designed using the patented LNP technology, which is also employed in several vaccines and treatments currently in clinical development.

Biovectra chief science officer Marc Sauer said: “Our work together will provide their licensed partners with faster market access to cGMP-quality LNPs for early and late-stage products.

“Biovectra looks forward to continuing to make a difference in patients’ lives by supporting GMP and commercial-ready LNP formulation at our new mRNA biomanufacturing facility in Atlantic Canada.”

The manufacturing will be conducted at the new biomanufacturing facility that Biovectra is building.

Upon completion, the facility will support the GMP manufacturing of plasmid DNA, mRNA, and LNP formulations.

This site can produce the equivalent of 160 million doses of mRNA vaccines and fill/finish 70 million final doses of vaccine per year for commercial distribution, offering an end-to-end manufacturing solution for Biovectra’s clients.

Additionally, it will add 36,000ft2 of space to the company’s current Charlottetown campus.

Biovectra is now fully equipped and staffed with experts to start the technological transfer of nucleic acid manufacturing techniques from Acuitas Therapeutics for these new sites.

Acuitas Therapeutics technology development VP Chris Barbosa said: “As we move forward in the development process in all of these areas with our partners, the demand for Acuitas’ clinical-grade LNP for our partners increases exponentially.

“We look forward to working with the Biovectra team to expand the cGMP manufacturing capacity for Acuitas’ LNP so that we can continue to meet the growing needs of our global partners.”