MilliporeSigma to bolster viral vector capacity with $600m Mirus buy

MilliporeSigma, the life sciences division of Germany’s Merck, is set to acquire Mirus Bio for $600 million to increase its offering for viral vector manufacturing.

Millie Nelson, Editor

May 24, 2024

2 Min Read

Madison, Wisconsin-based firm Mirus is focused on the advancement and commercialization of transfection reagents. According to MilliporeSigma, these reagents play an integral role in the production of viral vectors for cell and gene (CGT) therapies.

“Novel modalities, such as viral vector-based cell and gene therapies, hold immense promise to improve the lives of patients. Combining Mirus Bio's leading technology with Merck's bioprocessing expertise and portfolio allows us to provide solutions for almost every step of viral vector development and manufacturing,” said Matthias Heinzel, CEO of the unit.

“With our integrated offering along the viral vector value chain, we are now well-positioned to support our customers in this fast-growing market to positively impact the lives and health of patients worldwide.”

The firm said the decision to acquire Mirus has been driven by the market demand for CGTs, antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs), and messenger RNA (mRNA). MilliporeSigma claimed the global market for these modalities is anticipated to increase by around 20% per year over the mid-term. Therefore, as viral vectors play a key role in the production of said therapies, the proposed acquisition will bolster its capabilities and capacity.  

The company has been beefing up its viral vector capacity over the past few years. In 2021, it opened its second Carlsbad, California viral vector manufacturing plant. The $110 million investment is said to have more than doubled MilliporeSigma’s capacity to support large-scale commercial and industrial production for viral gene therapies. In April, construction began on an 18,000 square-meter research center worth $321 million at its global headquarters in Darmstadt, Germany. Once complete, the site will focus on developing solutions for manufacturing biopharmaceuticals, including antibodies, recombinant proteins, and viral vectors.

“We have been driving innovation in nucleic acid delivery for two decades,” said Dale Gordon, CEO of Mirus Bio. “Merck’s broad portfolio, scale, and global reach, combined with our leading transfection reagents, will help take our business to even greater heights and allow us to serve more customers, and ultimately patients, worldwide.”

The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of this year.

About the Author(s)

Millie Nelson

Editor, BioProcess Insider

Journalist covering global biopharmaceutical manufacturing and processing news and host of the Voices of Biotech podcast.

I am currently living and working in London but I grew up in Lincolnshire (UK) and studied in Newcastle (UK).

Got a story? Feel free to email me at [email protected]

You May Also Like