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27 Sep 2020

PharmaBlock Receives 2023 ACS CMO Excellence in Green Chemistry Award

Continuous manufacturing GMP workshop at PharmaBlock Zhejiang Site

PharmaBlock has been selected as the winner of the 2023 CMO Excellence in Green Chemistry Award by the American Chemical Society (ACS) Green Chemistry Institute Pharmaceutical Roundtable (GCI PR). This award honors and confirms PharmaBlock’s commitment to green chemistry and its achievement in developing innovative solutions for sustainable development in the pharmaceutical industry.

This article was orginally published in Contact Pharma magiazine.

PharmaBlock Sciences (Nanjing), Inc.  has launched a new Chemistry and Engineering Technology Center (CETC) located next to its GMP manufacturing site in Shangyu, Zhejiang Province, China. The addition of the CETC will further strengthen PharmaBlock’s chemistry and engineering technology platform while enabling greener, safer and more efficient process chemistry and manufacturing capabilities.

The new technology center covers an area of 32,300 square feet and cost $8 million. Featuring state of the art assets and experienced chemists and engineers, the CETC is committed to delivering innovative solutions with a focus on flow chemistry, micropacked bed reaction, biocatalysis, and an array of engineering technologies, including but not limited to separation, crystallization, and application of DCS and process simulation.

“Today, increased pressure for green, safe and sustainable supply chain management within the pharmaceutical industry has given rise to innovative chemistry and engineering technologies,” said Dr. Minmin Yang, founder and chairman, PharmaBlock. “We consider innovative technologies a fundamental part and cornerstone of PharmaBlock’s current and future success, and as a key component of our overall innovation strategy, the CETC will definitely consolidate our competitiveness.”

Among these new technologies PharmaBlock has implemented, the application of micropacked bed in flow hydrogenation is in the spotlight. Such a niche problem-solving technology, which has been increasingly adopted in the industry, is not only applied at lab scale, but also in pilot and manufacturing scale at PharmaBlock, with a daily output of 100kg to 1000kg.

“Micropacked beds have been successfully applied to the development and manufacturing of several dozens of our projects. We have seen many superiorities the micropacked bed creates over conventional methods: lower safety risk, lower wastes, cost and space saving, consistent quality, and robust process with simple control,” said Dr. Yuanping Jie, head of CETC, PharmaBlock. “In addition to the existing 5L and 10L micropacked bed reactors designed by our in-house engineering team, the CETC will add more scale-up equipment, expand the application into more reaction types, like oxidation, and enhance the automated mode to further ensure safety and high efficiency.”

According to the company, PharmaBlock customers will benefit from the addition of the CETC in many ways. Most notably, sitting next to the Zhejiang GMP site, the CETC will support more innovative solutions to help overcome scale up challenges in customers' projects, resulting in shortened lead times and reduced overall costs. The CETC also takes responsibility to optimize the scale up process of PharmaBlock's building blocks, which could be broadly used in many clinical and market drugs' manufacturing.

PharmaBlock (Stock code: 300725.SZSE), a global, fully integrated CDMO company focusing on innovative chemistry and low-carbon manufacturing, announced today that it has been selected as the winner of the 2023 CMO Excellence in Green Chemistry Award by the American Chemical Society (ACS) Green Chemistry Institute Pharmaceutical Roundtable (GCI PR). This award honors and confirms PharmaBlock’s commitment to green chemistry and its achievement in developing innovative solutions for sustainable development in the pharmaceutical industry.

The Award-winning Project

PharmaBlock’s award-winning project was its innovative continuous process for producing 3-oxocyclobutane-1-carboxylic acid. This achievement is significant because this product is used in the API synthesis of multiple marketed drugs. Two metric tons of the product were successfully produced in ten days by using this continuous process. Compared to the conventional batch process, PharmaBlock’s novel continuous process, featuring decarboxylation, decolorization, extraction, and separation, helps achieve 20-fold energy consumption, workspace, and workforce efficiency with much lower PMI.

Notably, the project team still continues to innovate and perfect the continuous process. A prototype that integrates additional functions, including raw material auto weighing & feeding, concentration, recrystallization, and filtration into the self-designed control system is now built and in operation. PharmaBlock plans to scale-up this technology to support end-to-end commercial production.

PharmaBlock’s Advancements in Green Chemistry and Continuous Manufacturing

At PharmaBlock, green chemistry and continuous manufacturing are essential components of its commitment to providing efficient, high-quality, and reliable services to partners, and fulfilling its social responsibility. PharmaBlock has developed a comprehensive suite of solutions, featuring flow chemistry, micropacked bed hydrogenation, biocatalysis, heterogeneous catalysis, etc., to reduce the carbon footprint, address the chemical challenges, and make pharmaceutical production more efficient and safer.

The award-winning project is one of the successes of continuous flow chemistry technology implementation at PharmaBlock. From a sustainability perspective, continuous flow chemistry can address various green chemistry and engineering principles raised by ACS GCI, including waste minimization, energy efficiency, process safety, etc. PharmaBlock’s flow chemistry team has been developing and mastering this technology and applying it to more than 40 reaction types. So far, the team has supported hundreds of development and manufacturing projects, including commercial and GMP manufacturing. In addition, the team is able to develop, engineer, and build continuous flow reaction devices in-house for diverse reaction conditions, volumes, materials, and mixing mechanisms, and enable the production at metric ton scale. PharmaBlock’s continuous manufacturing GMP workshop recently put into use at the PharmaBlock Zhejiang Site further enhances the large-scale continuous manufacturing capability and capacity.

“The CMO Excellence in Green Chemistry Award encourages CDMO companies to take a prominent role and proactively turn to green chemistry for more innovative solutions,” said Dr. Minmin Yang, President of PharmaBlock, “At PharmaBlock, we are dedicated to providing better products and services through innovation of chemistry and low-carbon technology in R&D and manufacturing. We are proud of our work and will continue to pioneer green chemistry to benefit our partners and contribute towards a sustainable future.”

About ACS GCI PR and CMO Excellence in Green Chemistry Award

The ACS Green Chemistry Institute (GCI) operates within the Office of Sustainability and is part of the Division of Scientific Advancement at the American Chemical Society. The ACS GCI Pharmaceutical Roundtable (PR) is the leading organization dedicated to catalyzing the integration of green chemistry and engineering in the pharmaceutical industry.

The CMO Excellence in Green Chemistry Award seeks to recognize outstanding efforts by CMO companies in green chemistry in support of pharmaceutical research, development, and manufacturing that demonstrate compelling environmental, safety, and efficiency improvements.

Mentioned Companies
PharmaBlock Sciences(Nanjing),Inc.
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