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Business Roundup

September 21, 2015 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 93, Issue 37

CP Kelco will build a production line for gellan gum at its Okmulgee, Okla., facility. It is also adding specialty xanthan gum capacity at its Wulian, China, plant. The products are used as food additives and in other applications.

FMC has agreed to sell its Brazilian generic crop chemical distribution subsidiary to Atanor do Brasil, a subsidiary of Albaugh. The divestment is part of FMC’s focus on value-added agriculture products and follows its acquisition of Cheminova last year.

BP will permanently close a p-xylene unit in Texas City, Texas, because of market conditions. The company will continue to operate two p-xylene plants as well as an m-xylene unit at the complex.

Clariant is expanding bleaching earths capacity in Turkey and Mexico and building new capacity in Indonesia. Bleaching earths are acid-activated clays that remove impurities and help clarify cooking oils.

Sangamo BioSciences has won approval of a Phase I study protocol from NIH’s Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee to use a zinc finger nuclease therapeutic as a potential curative treatment for hemophilia B. Pending FDA clearance to move ahead, the company says it will be the first clinical study of human in vivo genome editing.

Abzena, based in England, has paid $8.4 million to acquire PacificGMP, a contract biopharmaceutical development and manufacturing firm in San Diego. Abzena already offers protein engineering, immunogenicity assessment, cell line development, and antibody-drug conjugation technologies through its Antitope and PolyTherics subsidiaries.

Acacia Pharma, a start-up based in Oxford, England, plans to raise up to $230 million by placing its shares on the London Stock Exchange. The firm aims to gain U.S. regulatory approval for its lead product, a postoperation nausea drug, in the second half of 2016.

Almac, a contract manufacturing firm, will produce Wellstat Therapeutics’ Xuriden (uridine triacetate), which won FDA approval on Sept. 4. Xuriden treats hereditary orotic aciduria, a rare metabolic disorder that has been reported in approximately 20 patients worldwide.

Connecticut Innovations, a small business fund set up by the state of Connecticut, will invest $10 million in the Program in Innovative Therapeutics for Connecticut’s Health. The program, run by professors from Yale University and the University of Connecticut, will supervise the creation of new biopharma and biotechnology ventures based on research from the state’s higher education system.



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