Laval-based Nexelis partners with China’s JOINN for COVID-19 studies

Bioanalytics lab becomes first specialized in vaccine testing to set up in China

Laval-based Nexelis, specializing in vaccine testing research and development, announced last week the signature of a letter of intent with China-based JOINN Laboratories to partner on supporting sponsors conducting bioanalytical studies in China.

According to the company, Nexelis thus becomes the first laboratory specializing in vaccine testing to be established in China.

While the world is currently entering into a third wave of COVID-19, Nexelis says the partnership is notably expected to meet the international needs of leading pharmaceutical companies working on potentially fatal diseases in the clinical phase – including COVID-19.

COVID-19 vaccines

Nexelis says it is currently working with half of the pharmaceutical companies around the world (more than 20 firms) involved in the development of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Nexelis, part of Ampersand Capital Partners, is a leading provider of advanced assay development and laboratory testing services in the fields of infectious diseases, metabolic diseases and oncology.

The company, with locations in the U.S. and Belgium as well as Canada, is seeking opportunities with major pharmaceutical companies, innovative biotechnology companies and governmental and non-governmental institutions who seek to include China in their international clinical programs.

Largest non-clinical CRO

For its part, JOINN Laboratories is regarded as one of the most experienced integrated contract research organizations (CROs) (non-clinical, clinical and testing lab services) in China, and is the largest non-clinical Chinese CRO, with professional teams of more than 1,500 employees.

According to a release from the companies, JOINN Laboratories established a high standard quality system and has been qualified by US FDA and other major regulatory agencies worldwide. The data and study reports generated by JOINN Laboratories have been supporting global filing of new drugs for clients.

Careful choice of partner

Nexelis says it conducted an exhaustive study of the bioanalytical market in China during the last year and concluded that JOINN Laboratories was the best qualified in terms of capacity and quality of services to support international clinical trials led by Nexelis. Both companies agreed upon the terms of a partnership ensuring international sponsors that their timelines and quality expectations would be met or exceeded in China.

‘We are currently receiving requests to support international programs in China almost every week and we are extremely happy to have reached this milestone,’ said Benoit Bouche, CEO of Nexelis

“We are currently receiving requests to support international programs in China almost every week and we are extremely happy to have reached this milestone in the development of a strategic relationship with a company having such an outstanding reputation for scientific expertise and quality work in numerous areas that will enable us to further develop our global footprint,” Benoit Bouche, CEO of Nexelis, commented on the development.

Promising collaboration

“Nexelis’ global leadership and expertise in the vaccine clinical field is impressive and we are proud to soon be in a situation to serve the clinical stage needs of international clients working on life-threatening illnesses including COVID-19,” said Conglin Zuo, Vice-Chairman of the JOINN Laboratories board of directors.

“This partnership will also contribute to the ongoing transformation of our company from a leading nonclinical CRO into one with comprehensive capabilities from discovery through late clinical stages and post marketing service activities,” he added.

A leading provider

With expertise in immunology, five operating sites in North America and Europe, and an offer of services covering the needs of the pharmaceutical industry from lead selection to late clinical stage, Nexelis is regarded as a leading provider of assay development and advanced laboratory testing services in the infectious, metabolic and oncologic fields.

The company says its team of scientists has been instrumental in the development, qualification, validation and large-scale sample testing of assays for almost 100 new entities, including vaccines and biologics, anti-viral drugs, immunotherapy, gene and cell therapy products.