) recently entered into a collaboration Transgene for the
production of immunotherapy products and creating of an
industrial platform for the same. The platform will include
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Sanofi and Transgene, a French biopharmaceutical company, will
invest €10 million in the platform, which will be located at the
Genzyme Polyclonals site at Lyon, Gerland. The platform will be
solely owned by Sanofi. We note that Genzyme Polyclonals site is
already engaged in manufacturing polyclonal antibodies for the
global markets. The platform possesses the capability to
facilitate the registration of immunotherapy candidates in the US
Construction, qualification and validation of the manufacturing
facility are expected to commence in the third quarter of 2013.
Sanofi expects the first batch of commercial grade drugs to be
available in 2015.
Under the terms of the agreement, Sanofi and its subsidiary,
Genzyme will function as Contract Manufacturing Organization
(CMO) for Transgene. Sanofi will manufacture Transgene's
immunotherapy drugs, including modified vaccinia ankara vaccine,
for clinical studies as well as commercial purposes. For 15
years, Transgene will be recognized as a preferred customer of
the manufacturing facility.
The signing of the deal comes close on the heals of the positive
recommendation issued by the European Medicines Agency's (EMA)
Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) for Aubagio
(teriflunomide). The company is looking to get Aubagio approved
for the treatment of relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (RMS)
in adult patients.
We are pleased with Sanofi's efforts to develop its pipeline,
which should fetch significant revenue contributions upon
approval. We believe that the pipeline at Sanofi must deliver,
since many of its drugs are facing generic competition.
Sanofi carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) in the short run. However,
large cap pharma stocks such as
Eli Lilly and Company
) currently look more attractive. All three stocks carry a Zacks
Rank #2 (Buy).