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Cancer Cell-Therapy Companies Scale Up to Cut Costs

  • Kite CEO says shorter production time cuts costs in half
  • Adaptimmune CEO considering third production site in U.K.

For companies racing to develop cell therapies for cancer, building up production capacity while bringing down the cost of new drugmaking processes is a top priority alongside clinical testing.

Kite Pharma Inc. plans to complete construction of a new facility in its home state of California by the end of next year and has shortened the production process time from 12 days to as few as 6 days, lowering the cost by more than half, Chief Executive Officer Arie Belldegrun said Wednesday. Adaptimmune Therapeutics Plc is considering adding a third site for cell production at Cell Therapy Catapult in the U.K., the country where it’s based, and France’s Cellectis SA is weighing an additional facility in the U.S., the companies’ chief executive officers said.