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Center for Breakthrough Medicines Amplifies Viral Vector Manufacturing Capabilities by Licensing Asimov’s High-Performance GMP Suspension HEK293 Platform

January 18, 2023

  • • CBM to provide Asimov’s clonal HEK293 viral vector production platform to clients for preclinical and clinical manufacturing
  • • Clonal HEK293 suspension cell line is GMP-banked and qualified, ready for immediate use
  • • Compliments CBM’s Genesis Vector Manufacturing Solutions™ that accelerate the manufacturing of vector-based advanced therapies

King of Prussia, PA — January 18, 2023Center for Breakthrough Medicines (CBM), a contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) dedicated to addressing critical challenges associated with the commercialization of cell and gene therapies, announced today an agreement with Asimov, a Boston-based mammalian synthetic biology company building tools to design living systems, to license Asimov’s clonal HEK293 suspension cell line for the production of viral vectors.

HEK293 cell lines are the industry standard for producing therapeutic viral vectors, the most widely used vehicle for the delivery of gene therapies. With the unprecedented rise in approvals for new therapies, CBM will now be able to offer its clients immediate access to a high-performance clonal GMP-qualified cell line as part of its comprehensive capabilities for vector manufacturing designed to deliver high yields and higher throughput without comprising quality. 

“Many gene therapy developers need immediate access to a cell line for the production of their therapeutics. Last year, our process development group evaluated multiple commercially-available HEK293 platforms and chose Asimov’s to provide to clients,” said Sybil Danby, Senior Vice President of Business Development and Strategy for CBM. “We believe our agreement with Asimov provides significant value to our manufacturing partners and the patients to which they are looking to deliver life-changing and lifesaving therapeutics.”

Immediately available manufacturing capabilities supported by this clonal cell line will include both GMP manufacturing (up to 1000L scale) and non-GMP productions (up to 500L). GMP productions will be conducted in CBM’s state-of-the-art, modularly designed vector manufacturing suites that support 2-5 times greater batch throughput than traditional ballroom designs while maintaining maximum flexibility in production platforms. Non-GMP productions will be conducted in CBM’s pilot plant with a proven first-time right process development approach and expert teams.

“We believe this is the initial step of many with Asimov, an industry leader in mammalian synthetic biology and cell line development,” said Avi Nandi, Chief Technical Officer at CBM. “We continue to make significant investments into our technology platforms to ensure our clients have access to an end-to-end solution that allows them to develop and manufacture at lower costs. Our goal is for rare disease therapies to be accessible to as many patients around the world as possible and our relationship with Asimov removes a key barrier to therapy developers.”

The agreement closes on the heels of CBM’s recent launch of their Genesis Vector Manufacturing Solutions™, an end-to-end offering that includes plasmid manufacturing, first-time-right process development, high-throughput GMP vector manufacturing suites, and integrated testing and analytics, supply chain, and regulatory services co-located at a single site to accelerate development and manufacturing timelines of vector-based advanced therapies.

“CBM is well known for its commitment to its clients and, most importantly, to the patients those clients serve, and we are thrilled to work with them as the need for therapeutic viral vectors continues to rise,” stated Alec Nielsen, Asimov’s CEO. “The technology to design and manufacture viral vectors is constantly evolving, which is why at Asimov we’re developing full-stack tools, from host cells, to optimized genetic systems, to bioreactor process models. Our goal is to enable partners like CBM to improve vector titers, product quality, and bioreactor scalability, in order to increase access to advanced therapies.”

About The Center for Breakthrough Medicines

The Center for Breakthrough Medicines CBM is a cell and gene therapy contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) uniquely positioned to enable pharma and biotech companies to develop, test, manufacture and market life-saving therapies and treatments on a global scale. Ideally located in the heart of Philadelphia’s Cellicon Valley, CBM has assembled the most accomplished cell and gene therapy experts in the world, armed with cutting-edge and innovative technologies, to offer scalable, best-in-class pre-clinical through commercial manufacturing capabilities, including process development, plasmid DNA, viral vector manufacturing, cell banking, cell processing, and a full suite of complementary and standalone testing and analytical capabilities.

Purpose-built and patient-driven, CBM was designed from the ground up to be a more-effective CDMO, providing single-source, end-to-end solutions to deliver true partnership and unprecedented value to its customers through teamwork, transparency, and speed-to-market dedication.


Center for Breakthrough Medicines
Keith Bowermaster, APR, CCMP

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