Almac Sciences has been awarded a grant of $500,000 by the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator towards developing cost effective, scalable processes for the production of the active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) of the drug remdesivir.
The antiviral medication is the first drug to be approved by the FDA as a treatment for COVID-19 after a trial showed it cut recovery time by five days. In order to ultimately lower raw material usage, increase global yields and lower the overall cost of goods (COG) for the remdesivir development process, Almac aims to improve the overall route of synthesis to remdesivir including application of synthetic flow methodology and biocatalysis.
“We are delighted to receive funding from the Therapeutics Accelerator to apply our skills in the fight against COVID-19,” said Dr Stefan Mix, Head of Biocatalysis, Almac Sciences. “With the skillset of our multidisciplinary teams, we are confident that our developmental approach to the manufacture of remdesivir will positively impact patients’ lives who in urgent need, regardless of their location.”
“This project highlights Almac’s strength in technology deployment through application of both innovative flow chemistry and biocatalysis technologies to support development of processes which are economical, greener and safer to perform” says Prof. Tom Moody, VP of Technology Development and commercialisation at Almac Sciences and Arran Chemical Company.
The COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator is an initiative launched by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome and Mastercard, with funding from public and philanthropic donors to speed up the response to the COVID-19 pandemic by funding the identification, assessment, development and scale up of treatments.