Xellia Pharmaceuticals expands anti-infective capabilities in Croatia

Increases staff numbers at Centre of Excellence in Zagreb by almost 25% and adds around 1000 m2 of new laboratory space

Xellia Pharmaceuticals has expanded its product and innovation R&D team and has added new lab space at its Centre of Excellence in Zagreb, Croatia

Xellia Pharmaceuticals, a developer of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) used in anti-infective treatments for bacterial and fungal infections, has expanded its product and innovation R&D team with more than 15 new scientists.

The Copenhagen, Denmark-headquartered firm has also added approximately 1000 m2 of new lab space at its Centre of Excellence in Zagreb, Croatia.

The firm's portfolio includes difficult to develop and manufacture fermentation-based APIs and sterile Finished Dosage Forms (FDFs).

Many of these anti-infectives are of last resort and play a vital role in tackling resistant microbes, often when all other treatments have failed, the firm said.

The Zagreb innovation team is working to develop new antibiotics with improved efficacy, safety and delivery, while reducing toxic side effects in an effort to tackle antimicrobial resistance.

Our investment in the expansion of the product and innovation Centre of Excellence highlights our commitment to developing a more balanced portfolio

The firm is also developing novel drug-device combination antimicrobial therapies.

The discovery and formulation of new chemical entities effective against resistant microbes, with novel modes of action is also of interest.

Carl-Åke Carlsson, CEO, Xellia said: 'While generic anti-infective APIs and FDFs are, and will continue to be, a core backbone of Xellia’s business, our investment in the expansion of the product and innovation Centre of Excellence highlights our commitment to developing a more balanced portfolio of more innovative and proprietary anti-infective products.

'The investment is timely in the wake of the escalating scale of the antimicrobial resistance crisis and even now we are starting to see steady progress in the form of an early stage pipeline of novel drug products and compounds.'

Dr Aleksandar Danilovski, CSO and Vice President Global R&D, Xellia, and Managing Director of the Zagreb site said the recent expansion increases the firm's total investment in innovation-driven R&D activities in Croatia to more than $30 million since the Centre was established in 2011.

'With its strong pharmaceutical heritage, Zagreb has been the ideal site for establishing and then growing an expert, specialist team of around 100 scientists,' he said.

'Our team is dedicated to providing innovative solutions and developing differentiated anti-infective products, to tackle the increasing global healthcare problem of antimicrobial resistance.'

Xellia has global facilities including operational and manufacturing capabilities in Denmark, US, Hungary and China, and currently employs more than 1,200 people.

Since July 2013, the firm has been owned by Novo, the holding company of the Novo Group.

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