Interview of Karine Salim, about Novacap custom polymers for pharma applications

In her interview, Karine Salim tells us more about Novacap custom polymers for pharma applications.

To date, Novacap has three manufacturing sites in Europe (Couterne, Limay, Aramon) and one in Canada (St Jean sur Richelieu – Québéc) involved in polymers synthesis.

Novacap strong expertise in polymer development and manufacturing enables us to address different markets including lubricants, electronics, cosmetics, photovoltaic and pharma. Two of these sites are listed cGMP (Aramon, Limay) and gather together up to 250 employees who work intensively on active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) manufacturing and polymers synthesis for pharma applications including drug delivery and medical device. Our capabilities enable us to work from kg to ton scale, and also to carry out a wide range of polymerization technologies including Ring Opening Polymerisation (R.O.P.), controlled radical polymerisation (RAFT) and condensation polymerisation

Aramon cGMP production site is notably specialized in functional polymers production for drug delivery purpose. Within this unit, we have developed a portfolio of biodegradable Poly (D,L-lactic acid) (PLA) and poly (D,L-lacticdelivery co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) polymers well known under Expansorb® brand. These polyester polymers are approved as excipients in drug delivery systems (implants, parenteral) of injectable APIs for the controlled and slow release (weeks to months) of the final drug product. Indeed excipients are playing a key role in solubility and bioavailability of a final drug as well as in targeting biodistribution. In other words, these polymers are typically used to reduce multiple injections, toxicity level and to achieve the desired therapeutic effect. A number of well-known medicines on the market have been using PLGA controlled release since 1988, including Sandostatin LAR (octreotide ), Decapeptyl® (triptorelin ), Zoladex (goserelin ) and Lupron Depot (leuprolide acetate).

We leverage our 18 years of expertise in this field and can now provide our customers up to 50 references to support them in tackling formulation challenges encountered at early stage of drug development. In 2016, we entered into an agreement with Merck to expand its excipients portfolio. To date, Merck is the exclusive, global distributor of the Expansorb® line of biocompatible and biodegradable polymers. It is noteworthy to mention that polymers as carriers for drug delivery systems continuously attracted interest of a numerous scientists who provide an extensive breakthrough in this field. The French Academy of Sciences has recently awarded Dr Julien NICOLAS (research director of CNRS at Institut Galien Paris Sud) with the Novacap Prize 2018 for his outstanding achievement in this field.