Seeks partnerships with other pharmaceutical firms
Unilife Corporation, a US manufacturer of retractable syringes, has begun supplying the Unifill syringe to Sanofi.
The two companies signed an exclusive agreement three years ago and since then Sanofi has paid Unilife approximately US$40m, comprising a $16m (€10m) fee in exchange for the exclusive right to the Unifill syringe until 30 June 2014, and to help fund the industrialisation programme for the device up to a maximum of US$24m (€17m).
Unilife, which operates from state of the art facilities in Pennsylvania, said it would now also commence initial sales of the Unifill syringe to other pharmaceutical companies, who will conduct drug compatibility and stability studies that will test the device in combination with their injectable drugs. The resulting data will then be filed as the last step in completing the regulatory process for the drug-device combination product.
Alan Shortall, ceo of Unilife, said the start of initial sales of the Unifill syringe is ‘arguably the most significant achievement in the company's history’.
‘The Unifill syringe is generating strong interest from an increasing number of pharmaceutical companies for use in therapeutic classes outside of those retained by Sanofi,’ he said.
Ramin Mojdeh, COO of Unilife, added: ‘Having recognised our capacity for device innovation with the Unifill syringe, these top-tier pharmaceutical companies are selecting Unilife as their partner to develop other innovative, differentiated and proprietary devices that are customised to address the specific and unmet needs of their biological drugs.
‘These partnerships will enable us to expand our horizons across several additional high-value market sectors for injectable drug delivery devices.’