Press Release

Quantoom Biosciences granted $13.9 million (€12.4 million), to support the development of its novel MRNA manufacturing platform for vaccines and therapeutics

December 20, 2021

  • The objective is to make RNA therapeutics accessible to global patient populations.
  • Makes large-scale decentralized RNA production economically viable.

Quantoom Biosciences S.A. (“Quantoom”), a biotech with the mission to improve access to essential medicines and autonomy in bioproduction through innovation, today announces that they have received grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Walloon Region of Belgium for an amount of $7.5 million (€ 6.7 million), and $6.4 million (€ 5.7 million), respectively.

Under the terms of these agreements, Quantoom Biosciences will develop a preclinically validated mRNA (messenger ribonucleic acid) production system that addresses current and future bottlenecks in the production of mRNA vaccines and therapeutics to benefit people living in low- and middle-income countries. As part of the project, Quantoom Biosciences will work on a disruptive, fully integrated mRNA production line that will be made available for Research and Development (R&D) as well as Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) purposes. The automated production system will be designed to scale seamlessly from small scale (e.g., preclinical batches) to fully GMP compliant mass production meeting all capacity needs. The system will consist of multiple modules that are interconnected to ensure continuous synthesis of mRNA products.

Both the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Walloon Region have provided previous grants to support projects from Univercells S.A., the parent company of Quantoom Biosciences. At the end of 2021, the Univercells group entities will have received on consolidated basis a total amount of $40.0 million (€35.7 million) from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and $22.5 million (€20.1 million) from the Walloon Region of Belgium. These funds have been supporting the process development efforts of Univercells and its affiliates resulting in our scale-XTM and NevoLine technologies, and processes to improve vaccines, antibodies and vectors manufacturing.

Willy Borsus, Vice-President and Minister of Economy of the Walloon Government commented: « We are proud that the Walloon Government has been supporting Univercells since the beginning and now Quantoom Biosciences, its affiliate. Supporting innovative and competitive production systems developments and teams, in these times of Covid-19, is one way to get out of the health crisis not only in Belgium but also in all countries. »

“The ongoing Covid-19 crisis has affected us all, and at Quantoom Biosciences, it challenges our sense of responsibility to find solutions to current and future disease threats. With the emerging mRNA vaccine technology and several product market approvals, we aim to make an impact on global health by making mRNA products as accessible and affordable as possible through technological innovations in biomanufacturing” commented José Castillo, CEO of Quantoom Biosciences. “Once again, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Walloon Region of Belgium are providing funding to the Univercells group, and in this case, to support the ambitious project of Quantoom Biosciences that will contribute to the overall mission of making biologics affordable and accessible to all”, added José Castillo.

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