DCAT Week Education Programs: A Snapshot View

The education programs at DCAT Week 2024 featured a vast array of speakers and subjects impactful to the bio/pharmaceutical manufacturing value chain and the customer–supplier relationship.

DCAT Member Company Announcement Forum
Senior executives from DCAT Member Companies highlighted their companies’ major news at the DCAT Member Company Announcement Forum at DCAT Week with the latest in expansions  across the bio/pharmaceutical manufacturing value chain: from drug substances (small-molecules and biologics) to drug products (solid dosage and injectable product forms). In all, 20 companies took to the podium to make their announcements. The program kicked off DCAT Week on Monday March 18th, 2024.

Expansions in biomanfacturing, both biologic-based drug substances and cell and gene therapies, was a major theme. Companies making news announcements in this area included Samsung Biologics, Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies, Evotec, Seqens, and Aragen Life Sciences.

Expansions in manufacturing for small-molecule active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), including high-potency APIs, and other specialized APIs, was another key area of investment with several companies announcing expansion plans, recently completed expansions, or soon-to-be-completed expansions. These companies included Cambrex, AGC Pharma Chemicals, Porton, Polpharma API, and ST Pharm.  

On the drug-product side, expansions in sterile drug manufacturing/injectables was also an area of investment activity announced at the DCAT Member Company Announcement Forum at DCAT Week. Companies making news in this area included: Simtra BioPharma Solutions, Kindeva Drug Delivery, Oncomed Manufacturing, and Adragos Pharma.

Crossing more than one manufacturing area are end-to-end providers, which had expansion news for both drug-substance and drug-product manufacturing. These end-to-end providers included announcements by Thermo Fisher Scientific, Noramco, WuXi STA, CordenPharma, BSP Pharmaceuticals, and Enzene Biosciences.

Look for complete coverage of these news announcements in the April 5th issue of DCAT Value Chain Insights.  

Pharma Industry Outlook
With 2024 well underway, the crucial question for both bio/pharma companies and their suppliers is: how will the industry perform in 2024 and the near term?

Graham Lewis,
Vice President of Global Pharma Strategy,

The answer to that pivotal question was provided at the Pharma Industry Outlook education program, held on Monday March 18, 2024, at DCAT Week. Graham Lewis, Vice President of Global Pharma Strategy, IQVIA, a business intelligence firm regarded as the gold standard for bio/pharma market analysis, provided the latest market data and trends.

COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics had been a boon for the industry, but with lower growth for these products, how will the industry perform relative to pre-pandemic growth trends? Is the industry’s performance trending upward or not? The program examined the growth prospects and factors influencing performance for: innovator and generic drugs; leading therapeutic sectors, both pipelines and commercial products; and developed and emerging markets.

Complete coverage of this presentation will be provided in a forthcoming issue of DCAT Value Chain Insights.

The performance of the industry as a whole is a factor in determining the health of the market for pharmaceutical outsourcing, which is further influenced by other factors. The Pharma Industry Outlook program also featured a Wall Street view of the CDMO/CMO sector, with Daniel Cohen, Managing Director & Global Head of Pharma Outsourcing Investment Banking, Morgan Stanley, providing a financial overview of the CDMO/CMO sector: performance & investor valuations and analysis of key mergers & acquisitions and other trends impacting sector performance.

Best Practices Platform: Industry Case Studies
DCAT also introduced a new education program at DCAT Week: Best Practices Platform: Industry Case Studies, which was held on Tuesday March 19, 2024, and featured practical insights on how bio/pharma companies and their suppliers are taking supply management to the next level.

Tapping into the expertise and experience of DCAT Member Companies, this program invited DCAT Member Companies to apply for consideration to present specific examples of innovative approaches used to optimize the bio/pharma customer– supplier relationship or other approaches to make supply more robust, cost- & time-efficient, and secure. Potential presenters from DCAT Member Companies submitted applications, which were reviewed by a task force of industry colleagues selected from DCAT volunteer committees and DCAT leadership. The task force selected case studies providing the most useful, valuable, and innovative insight for DCAT Member Companies.

Subjects addressed were:

  • A case study from Biogen’s development pipeline on using a Sustainability Efficiency Scorecard to evaluate a manufacturing process using green-chemistry metrics (co-presentation) by Suzanne M. Opalka, Ph.D., Associate Director, Chemical Process Development, Biogen, and Ken Shultis, Managing Partner, Rondaxe Pharma.
  • De-risking raw materials supply through a joint audit model (co-presentation) by Jennifer Goodman, Senior Director of Quality, Avantor and Priya Patel, Senior Quality Manager–Auditing, PTC Therapeutics; and
  • Use of a customized governance model showing a risk-management approach in supply chain and continuous-improvement initiatives to drive performance by Max Brescia, Senior Global Director, Contract Manufacturing, Oral Solid Dose, API & Fermentation, AbbVie.

The Emerging Role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Supply Chain Management
Also, an expert panel at another DCAT Week education program examined how artificial intelligence (AI) may change how bio/pharma companies and their suppliers will do business. Key questions included is it possible that a company’s next supply deal could be negotiated by AI and can AI protect a company from costly supply-chain disruptions? See the full story, The Emerging Role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Supply Chain Management.

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