Bayer launches cell and gene therapy platform

Goal is to enable support of partners through its expertise and resources

Germany-based Bayer AG recently launched a cell and gene therapy (C&GT) platform within its pharmaceuticals division.

Stefan Oelrich, a member of the company’s Board of Management and president of the pharma division, says that with the rapid growth of C&GT, Bayer believes the time is now to competitively establish itself in this field. A challenge that Bayer is ready for, he says.

“This is a defining moment for Bayer. Cell and gene therapies are leading innovation in healthcare, and it is our goal to be at the forefront of this revolution in science," Oelrich stated.  "This will complement our existing C&GT pipeline, which already includes five advanced assets with at least three investigational new drugs annually for the next years.“

As part of the pharma division, the C&GT platform will merge several functions, providing support across the entire value chain for the R&D of C&GTs. This includes expertise in research and preclinical development, CMC (chemistry, manufacturing and controls), clinical development, commercial, strategy implementation and project management.

Bayer focuses on selected areas of C&GT, such as stem cell therapies, gene augmentation, gene editing and allogeneic cell therapies. In 2019, it acquired BlueRock Therapeutics, and a deal with Asklepios Biopharmaceutical closed on Dec. 1 of this year. These initial partners are starting to enroll in Bayer’s C&GT platform.