News | May 8, 2018

Proteon Therapeutics And Lonza Extend Manufacturing Agreement For Commercial Supply

  • Partners extend existing contract for manufacture of vonapanitase to 2029 as ongoing Phase 3 trial nears completion
  • Lonza Pharma & Biotech successfully scaled up a lab process at their Microbial facility in Visp, Switzerland, providing flexible solutions as Proteon moves toward possible commercialization
  • Lonza’s experience in products with Breakthrough Therapy Designation provides expert support for these fast paced, challenging projects

Proteon Therapeutics, Inc., a company developing novel, first-in-class therapeutics to address the medical needs of patients with kidney and vascular diseases, recently announced a long-term contract extension with Lonza Pharma & Biotech for the commercial supply of investigational vonapanitase’s active pharmaceutical ingredient (API).

“Proteon and Lonza have had a strong relationship for nearly a decade, and this amendment extends that relationship,” said Timothy Noyes, President and Chief Executive Officer of Proteon. “The amendment provides Proteon with access to a top-tier manufacturing site for the long-term commercial supply of investigational vonapanitase after potential FDA approval.”

“Lonza’s microbial expertise and versatile assets will enable us to anticipate and deliver API for Proteon at this critical phase in the lifecycle of their therapy,” said Marc Funk, COO Lonza Pharma & Biotech.

Karen Fallen, VP, Head of Clinical Development and Manufacturing for Lonza, added: “It’s always motivating for our teams to support biotechs like Proteon from Phase I studies through to commercialization and to see the impact for patients.” 

Lonza has manufactured API for Proteon at its microbial manufacturing facility in Visp (CH) since 2009. Initially, a small-scale process was transferred into Lonza’s development labs for process optimization and consistency studies. The process was then scaled up to 1,000L scale cGMP manufacture to support Proteon’s early clinical studies and potential commercial requirements.

As Proteon worked to complete enrollment in its ongoing Phase 3 clinical trial, PATENCY-2, Lonza supported Proteon with three process validation batches at 1,000L commercial scale, each of which met the intended release criteria. If PATENCY-2 is successful, Proteon expects to include results from these validation runs in a potential Biologics License Application (BLA) filing in the second half of 2019, which Lonza will support.

About Vonapanitase
Vonapanitase is an investigational drug intended to improve hemodialysis vascular access outcomes. Vonapanitase is currently being studied in a Phase 3 clinical trial in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). It has received Breakthrough Therapy, Fast Track and Orphan Drug designations from the FDA, and Orphan Medicinal Product designation from the European Commission, for hemodialysis vascular access indications. Proteon is also currently conducting a Phase 1 clinical trial of vonapanitase in patients with peripheral artery disease (PAD). 

About Proteon Therapeutics
Proteon Therapeutics is committed to improving the health of patients with kidney and vascular diseases through the development of novel, first-in-class therapeutics. Proteon's lead product candidate, vonapanitase, is an investigational drug intended to improve hemodialysis vascular access outcomes. Proteon is evaluating vonapanitase in patients with CKD undergoing surgical creation of a radiocephalic arteriovenous fistula. Proteon is also evaluating vonapanitase in a Phase 1 clinical trial in patients with PAD. For more information, visit 

About Microbial Manufacturing at Lonza Pharma & Biotech
Recent developments in next generation biotherapeutics including antibody mimetics and novel scaffolds have spurred a renewed interest in microbial protein expression and manufacture technologies. Lonza’s proven XSMicrobial Expression Platform combined with more than 30 years of process development and cGMP manufacture expertise make us an ideal partner to successfully support clinical and commercial programs. For more information, visit

About Lonza
Lonza is one of the world’s leading and most-trusted suppliers to the pharmaceutical, biotech and specialty ingredients markets. As an integrated solutions provider, Lonza is boosting its value creation along and beyond the healthcare continuum with a strong focus on patient healthcare, consumer preventive healthcare and consumer's healthy environment.

Lonza harnesses science and technology to create products that support safer and healthier living and that enhance the overall quality of life. With the recent Capsugel acquisition, Lonza now offers products and services from the custom development and manufacturing of active pharmaceutical ingredients to innovative dosage forms for the pharma and consumer health and nutrition industries.

Benefiting from its regulatory expertise, Lonza is able to transfer its know-how from pharma to hygiene and fast-moving consumer goods all the way to coatings and composites and the preservation and protection of agricultural goods and other natural resources.;

Founded in 1897 in the Swiss Alps, Lonza today is a well-respected global company with more than 100 sites and offices and approximately 14,500 full-time employees worldwide. The company generated sales of CHF 5.1 billion in 2017 with a CORE EBITDA of CHF 1.3 billion. For more information, visit

SOURCE: Proteon Therapeutics, Inc.