Novasep invests €30m to build world's largest chromatography plant

New plant on its site at Mourenx, France, to produce a large volume commercial API

Novasep is to invest €30m to build in Europe what will be the world's largest chromatography plant used for the production of a large volume commercial API.

The plant will be built on Novasep's existing Mourenx site in France and will be operational and validated within 18 months, the company says. Both the development of an advanced purification process and the plant expansion within the challenging timescale are results of the sharp increase in the projected demand for a large volume, highly purified API.

The €30m investment follows two other significant global investments in 2012: the opening of a new 2,000m2 facility in Shanghai, China; and a €3m investment to expand the company’s high potency manufacturing capabilities at the facility in Le Mans, France.

The new plant, designed by a Novasep in-house engineering team, will include Varicol continuous chromatography systems with 1,200mm diameter columns operated at up to 70 bars, the largest ever built in the pharmaceutical industry. The plant will enable the production of a highly purified API from a complex mixture. The systems will also integrate sophisticated solvent recovery systems for the recycling of 99.9% of solvents, resulting in both a very cost-effective and environmentally friendly process.

‘Demand for Novasep's advanced, purification-based manufacturing capabilities in the life science industries continues to increase as drugs in development and reaching the market become more complex and specific. This necessitates our third, and largest global plant expansion in 2012,’ said Patrick Glaser, president and CEO of Novasep.

‘This successful project, the world's largest chromatography plant in the pharmaceutical industry, demonstrates the validity of the Novasep strategy which is based on the combination of synthesis, biosynthesis and purification.’