SAN ANTONIO–Phyton Biotech announced that it has won the international “Research Group of the Year” 2011 Life Science Award from Select Biosciences. The award was presented on June 29th at the inaugural European Lab automation congress in Hamburg, Germany. An international panel of judges, all experts in Life Sciences, selected Phyton Biotech from a group of three finalists.
Phyton’s research team was nominated for the award by Thomas P. Sakmar, M.D., Richard M. & Isabel P. Furlaud Professor, The Rockefeller University, for its innovative work to develop and implement an environmentally friendly, cost-efficient, and large-scale process to produce the anticancer drugs paclitaxel and docetaxel.
For over 10 years, Phyton has operated the world’s largest pharmaceutical plant cell fermentation (PCF™) facility, located near Hamburg, Germany. The facility has the capacity to produce more than sixty percent of the annual global demand for paclitaxel. The award recognizes Phyton’s newly developed capability of concentrating fermentation broth into a powder that is transferred to its API facility near Vancouver, Canada. To put Phyton’s capacity into perspective, it would take a sustained plantation of approximately 25 million yew trees an eight-year harvest cycle to produce an equivalent amount of paclitaxel. Such plantations are vulnerable to droughts and flooding and require significant quantities of herbicides and fertilizers. The extraction and purification of paclitaxel from tree biomass also requires enormous amounts of toxic solvents and physical labor.
“Phyton is very pleased to be the winner of this highly competitive award. Our research teams in both Germany and Canada have done great work together to develop an innovative, efficient, and green process to produce important chemotherapeutic agents at a huge scale,” said Dr. Roland Franke, Chief Technical Officer for Phyton.
“We plan to launch this new capability in April 2012 and will announce new developments at the CPhI Worldwide conference in October,” added Marc Iacobucci, Phyton General Manager.
Phyton Biotech, a DFB Pharmaceuticals, Inc. company, is headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, USA, and is a global supplier of high-quality paclitaxel and docetaxel API. With development and manufacturing facilities near Hamburg, Germany and Vancouver, Canada, the company also has R&D capabilities via PCF™ and chemical synthesis to develop recombinant proteins or other API’s for its customers.
Jackie Labbe, 604-777-2340 x 225