06 Sep 2022
Lonza and Touchlight collaborate on end-to-end mRNA offering
  • Collaboration expands Lonza’s end-to-end offering for mRNA manufacturing with additional, differentiated source of DNA raw material, Touchlight’s doggybone DNA (dbDNATM)
  • Touchlight provides synthetic DNA through a cell-free enzymatic process, with advantages of speed, quality, capacity, and scalability
  • Customers can gain access to Touchlight’s dbDNA as an integral part of Lonza’s offering, benefiting from end-to-end mRNA manufacturing capabilities to expedite time to market

Basel, Switzerland and Hampton, UK, 6 September 2022 – Lonza, a global manufacturing partner to the pharma, biotech and nutrition industries, today announced a collaboration with Touchlight, a biotechnology company pioneering enzymatic DNA production to enable the genetic medicine revolution. Through this collaboration, Lonza will have the ability to integrate an additional, differentiated source of DNA in its end-to-end offering to customers developing messenger RNA (mRNA) therapeutics and vaccines, while Touchlight can widen the channels through which customers can gain access to its novel doggybone DNA (dbDNA) technology. 

Under the terms of the agreement, Lonza can now provide its customers with seamless access to Touchlight’s enzymatic DNA technology; a linear, covalently closed DNA vector, produced using an enzymatic manufacturing process which enables GMP production at unprecedented speed, scale and purity. Access to this technology expands the options for Lonza’s customers beyond the traditional method of working with plasmid DNA (pDNA), while continuing to benefit from the company’s integrated mRNA manufacturing offering. 

André Goerke, Vice President, Business Unit Head mRNA, Lonza, commented: “The strategic collaboration with Touchlight enables Lonza to further enhance its position as a global leader in mRNA manufacturing. We can now provide our customers with a strong foundation to deliver an end-to-end offering that includes access to a novel synthetic DNA technology. Such an integrated solution can prove beneficial in speeding up time to market, which is critical in the fast-paced industry of mRNA manufacturing.”

Karen Fallen, CEO, Touchlight DNA Services, added: “We are delighted to provide Touchlight customers the benefits of an end-to-end mRNA offering through our collaboration with Lonza. Lonza is the leading CDMO in mRNA manufacturing and has an established, global mRNA manufacturing network. The alliance allows both companies to innovate and to extend their offering on a global level.”

DNA serves as the starting template for the production of mRNA. Through an enzymatic in-vitro transcription process, this DNA sequence is then transcribed into a single-stranded RNA molecule, which is then processed into mRNA. Current mRNA-based therapeutics in development include vaccines for infectious diseases and immuno-oncology.