Merck Becomes the First to Use Acoustic Technology for Cell Therapy Manufacturing
- Acquisition of FloDesign Sonics marks next step in autologous manufacturing
Darmstadt, Germany, October 10, 2019 – Merck, a leading science and technology company, today announced it has acquired FloDesign Sonics, of Wilbraham, Massachusetts, USA, developer of a unique acoustic cell processing platform for the industrialization of cell and gene therapy manufacturing. Financial details were not disclosed.
“Chimeric antigen receptor T cell therapies, or CAR-T for short, employs the body’s own immune systems to fight cancer by turning T cells into targeted therapeutics. This revolutionary cancer treatment is challenging and complex, with the process often taking up to a month,” said Udit Batra, member of the Merck Executive Board and CEO, Life Science. “Our acquisition of FloDesign Sonic will industrialize the manufacturing of autologous cell therapy, allowing these types of potentially life-saving treatments to reach more patients, faster.”
Merck is the first company to make acoustic technology available for cell therapy manufacturing. Acoustic cell processing is a disruptive technology that allows for the manipulation of cells with ultrasonic waves. FloDesign Sonics’ acoustic cell processing platform allows enhanced cell washing and concentration for manufacturing cell therapies. The acquisition is a strategic fit for Merck, strengthening the ability alongside pharmaceutical manufacturers to advance cell-based therapies to patients.
“Merck is the best home for FloDesign Sonics, our acoustic cell processing technology and our employees,” said Stanley Kowalski III, co-founder, chairman and CEO of FloDesign Sonics. “The opportunity for FloDesign Sonics to become part of a world class 351-year-old science and technology company is very rewarding.”
About FloDesign Sonics
Founded in 2009, the company develops an acoustic cell processing platform for cell and gene therapy applications. FDS just recently (Q1 2019) launched its first commercial product (Ekko) which allows the wash, concentration and formulation within Autologous CAR-T Manufacturing workflow. No relevant commercial revenue yet (2019: €0.8M). Currently 52 granted patents & >200 applied.
For further details: visit www.fdsonics.com/technology.