Philly Life Science Companies Bring Home the Gold at PACT’s 29th Annual Enterprise Awards

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After yet another year with COVID-19, the Greater Philadelphia Alliance for Capital and Technology (PACT) knew Philly entrepreneurs needed a reason to celebrate, IRL.
PACT gathers industry leaders, growing companies and local institutions each year for its Enterprise Awards celebrating innovators in the tech and life sciences community. 2021’s event was the first back after a pandemic hiatus and honored investor and serial entrepreneur Josh Kopelman with a Legend Award.
This year, for its 29th edition, PACT convened folks at the Springfield Country Club in Delaware County on Tuesday, May 24, to honor 27 people and organizations. Though there was no Legend Award this time around, nine companies and people took home awards.

Center for Breakthrough Medicines Beats Back on the 2022 Biotech Bear Market with Rapid Hiring and Expansion

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Audrey Greenberg, co-founder of CBM and also the executive director of The Discovery Labs, said the successful growth seen at CBM is a testament to the great company culture the organization has built since its founding in 2019. Among the hires in the first quarter of this year is John Lee, PhD, the new Vice President and Head of Cell Therapy. Lee, an accomplished CAR-T immunobiologist, was hired in March to lead cell therapy programs at CBM. Prior to joining CBM, Lee established the Cell Therapy Platform team at Janssen Pharmaceuticals. He also served as head of Oncology Cell Therapy at GlaxoSmithKline.

The Center for Breakthrough Medicines (CBM) Strikes Multi-Year Deal with UK Cell Therapy Powerhouse

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KING OF PRUSSIA, Pa., April 12, 2022 /PRNewswire/ –The Center for Breakthrough Medicines (CBM) announced today a partnership with London-based Achilles Therapeutics plc (NASDAQ: ACHL). The deal provides expanded cell therapy manufacturing capabilities required to supply products for Achilles’ ongoing Phase I/IIa clinical trials in advanced non-small cell lung cancer and metastatic or recurrent melanoma patients. CBM is a contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) dedicated to addressing the challenges associated with developing and manufacturing advanced therapies. Achilles is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing precision T-cell therapies to treat solid tumors.

“We are bringing together two powerful, experienced cell therapy organizations for the benefit of cancer patients,” said John Lee, Ph.D., Vice President, Head of Cell Therapy, CBM. “We look forward to mobilizing our world-class cell therapy capabilities, with our first wave of cell therapy suites to enable Achilles to accelerate the development of their flagship precision T cell product candidate.”

“Achilles is thrilled to partner with CBM given their experience, capabilities, available cell therapy capacity and strategic location. After opening our US headquarters in Philadelphia, CBM’s King of Prussia location was perfect for our needs,” said Edward Samuel, Executive Vice President of Technical Operations at Achilles Therapeutics. “The expertise of the CBM team, along with their ability to provide on-demand, flexible access to autologous cell therapy manufacturing GMP space was vital in our decision.”

CBM will manufacture Achilles’ precision T cell therapy for the company’s ongoing Phase I/IIa clinical trials in non-small cell lung cancer and melanoma patients.

“Our ability to deliver customizable manufacturing solutions for partners seeking autologous cell therapy production positions us well with Achilles, and we are excited to support them on their journey to bring desperately needed treatment options to cancer patients,” said Audrey Greenberg, co-founder, CBM. “We employ the most sophisticated scheduling, supply chain and inventory control systems integrated with industry-leading comprehensive in-process testing, quality control, and lot release programs in the industry. Achilles’ goal to deliver improved therapies to cancer patients also aligns with CBM’s mission and culture.”

About The Center for Breakthrough Medicines (CBM)
CBM is a purposefully built advanced therapy contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) based in the heart of Philadelphia’s Cellicon Valley. CBM offers pre-clinical through commercial manufacturing capabilities including process development, plasmid DNA, viral vector, cell therapy and a full suite of testing and analytical capabilities. Through a single-source, end-to-end solution, CBM accelerates time to market without compromising quality.

About Achilles Therapeutics
Achilles is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing precision T cell therapies targeting clonal neoantigens: protein markers unique to the individual that are expressed on the surface of every cancer cell. The Company has two ongoing Phase I/IIa trials, the CHIRON trial in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and the THETIS trial in patients with recurrent or metastatic melanoma. Achilles uses DNA sequencing data from each patient, together with its proprietary PELEUS™ bioinformatics platform, to identify clonal neoantigens specific to that patient, and then develop precision T cell-based product candidates specifically targeting those clonal neoantigens.

Center for Breakthrough Medicines Launches Analytical Testing Services for Advanced Therapies, Bringing Solutions to a Supply-Constrained Industry

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The Center for Breakthrough Medicines (CBM) announced the opening of their analytical testing services laboratories that will deliver the most comprehensive testing capabilities in the industry. These vital service offerings address growing capacity needs in the severely supply-constrained cell & gene therapy market. 

The Center for Breakthrough Medicines and the University of Pennsylvania Partner in the Manufacturing of Gene Therapies

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The Center for Breakthrough Medicines (CBM) and the University of Pennsylvania’s Gene Therapy Program (GTP) have signed a landmark collaboration agreement, to combine Penn’s knowledge and expertise in the development of gene therapies with CBM’s manufacturing capacity and singular focus on advanced therapies.

Philadelphia Real Estate Round-Up 2021

Image showing various photos of Philadelphia, with text saying "Philadelphia Real Estate Roundup"
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In 2021, Philadelphia continued to prove why it’s an up-and-coming life sciences and biotech cluster. Current reports state the city received $1.23 billion in National Institute of Health (NIH) funding in 2021 — and that number is expected to be bigger once finalized, said Lauren Gilchrist, Managing Director of Research at Longfellow Real Estate Partners.

SK Inc., the Second Largest Conglomerate in South Korea, has invested $350 million in the Center for Breakthrough Medicines

Center for Breakthrough Medicines‘ headquarters at the Discovery Labs, King of Prussia, Pennsylvania.
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The Center for Breakthrough Medicines (CBM) announced today that it has received $350 million in equity financing from SK Inc. (KRX: 034730) (SK). CBM is partnering with SK to create the world’s largest end-to-end cell and gene therapy contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO).

Center for Breakthrough Medicines Taps Joerg Ahlgrimm as new CEO

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With a goal of expanding manufacturing capabilities to meet the growing demands of cell and gene therapy production, The Center for Breakthrough Medicines (CBM) promoted Chief Operating Officer Joerg Ahlgrimm to the role of Chief Executive Officer. Ahlgrimm joined CBM last year after serving as Head of Global Operations Pharma Biotech and Nutrition at Lonza. CBM, located within the Discovery Labs campus in suburban Philadelphia, is a quickly growing contract development and manufacturing organization that aims to provide pre-clinical through commercial manufacturing capabilities for client companies. CBM’s offerings include process development, plasmid DNA, viral vectors, cell banking, cell processing, and supporting testing capabilities.

The Center for Breakthrough Medicines at Discovery Labs Appoints Matthew Snyder as Associate Director, Engineering & Facilities

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The Center for Breakthrough Medicines at Discovery Labs, an ecosystem accelerating the path to commercialization for cell and gene therapy companies, has appointed Matthew Snyder to the role of Associate Director, Engineering & Facilities. Mr. Snyder will be responsible for establishing the critical support services necessary for laboratory and manufacturing operations. These include setup of a comprehensive safety program; implementation of equipment tracking and maintenance and calibration management systems; interface coordination between site infrastructure utilities, building monitoring and process control systems; and technical engineering support for process operations and facility design.