Cobra Biologics and Symbiosis complete $6m collaboration

Published: 26-Jun-2019

Partnership found synergies to improve the complexity, time and risk of drug substance and drug product viral vector production for gene and immunotherapy

Cobra Biologics and Symbiosis Pharmaceutical Services have successfully completed their collaboration to develop synergistic capabilities. The CDMO and CMO both specialise in viral vector drug products and substance production.

Intended to accelerate the clinical and commercial production of viral vectors, which represent part of the burgeoning Advanced Therapeutics Medicinal Product (ATMP) drug development space and the frontier of personalised medicine, the 18-month joint project between the two UK-based companies saw a combined investment of £4.8m.

These funds included significant support from a grant received under the UK Governments’ Innovate UK Health and Life Sciences Programme.


The collaboration significantly increases both companies’ existing commercial capacity and simplifies the supply chain process for the manufacture of viral vectors for use in gene therapy and immunotherapy.

By aligning the technical expertise and manufacturing capabilities of Cobra and Symbiosis, the complexity, time and risk of viral vector manufacturing projects will be greatly reduced meaning that customer companies developing viral vector ATMPs can derive their own competitive value from accelerating their progression along the drug development critical path.

The collaboration improves support for new and existing customers’ clinical and commercial ambitions to deliver a growing number of innovative cell and gene therapy medicines to market.

Colin MacKay, CEO of Symbiosis, said that Innovate facilitating the development of viral vectors and other ATMPs here in the UK is not only astute but will generate a tangible value which will benefit the UK, the CDMOs receiving grants alongside their respective clients, and ultimately the patients most in need of those innovative medicines.

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