RVAC Medicines and A*STAR to Build Capabilities for mRNA Production in Singapore

RVAC Medicines Pte. Ltd. (RVAC), a messenger RNA (mRNA) technology platform company incubated by CBC Group, a healthcare-dedicated asset management firm headquartered in Singapore, and the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) announced the signing of a master research collaboration agreement to jointly study and develop solutions to build mRNA manufacturing and analytics capabilities in Singapore.

With this collaboration, RVAC and A*STAR will set up a joint laboratory based at A*STAR’s Bioprocessing Technology Institute (BTI) to develop a preclinical manufacturing platform, which will facilitate the generation of novel raw materials and potentially clinical-grade assets for the development of mRNA vaccines and therapeutics targeting infectious diseases and other conditions with unmet needs.

Leveraging BTI’s deep expertise in processing technologies and analytical sciences for biotherapeutics and the strong translational research in biomedical technologies across multiple research institutes in A*STAR, this collaboration seeks to enable local ecosystem innovators and global manufacturers to access the manufacturing platform to aid in preclinical asset development.

The collaboration utilizes RVAC’s extensive capabilities in mRNA, vaccine, and drug delivery technologies, as well as knowledge and expertise in biopharmaceutical manufacturing, research and development (R&D), clinical development, and commercialization. RVAC develops mRNA-based vaccines targeting infectious diseases such as COVID-19, for which it initiated a first-in-human vaccine clinical trial in September 2022. Additional RVAC pipeline assets in development include vaccines targeting respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and Clostridioides difficile (CDI) infections. Since its founding in June 2021, RVAC has recruited a team of more than 80 top-tier scientists and experienced industry veterans, and has established R&D centres in Boston, MA, USA and Shanghai, PRC.

“Our collaboration with A*STAR brings together innovative research and development experience from some of the world’s leading mRNA researchers,” said Dr Sean Fu, Chief Executive Officer of RVAC. “We are committed to providing the staff, equipment, and technological expertise, with support from our R&D teams around the world, to this endeavour. Combined with A*STAR’s knowledge and experience, this partnership has the potential to continue the advancement of mRNA as a new class of medicines.”

Professor Ng Huck Hui, Assistant Chief Executive, Biomedical Research Council, A*STAR, said, “Public-private partnerships are key enablers in translating science into impact. A*STAR’s multidisciplinary R&D capabilities in infectious diseases, artificial intelligence, analytics and protein engineering, coupled with RVAC’s expertise, will advance the development of mRNA vaccines and therapeutics and contribute to better health outcomes for Singapore and beyond.”

Fu Wei, Chief Executive Officer, CBC Group added, “The collaboration between RVAC and A*STAR is a significant step in supporting the growth of innovative R&D that will ultimately drive the development of advanced vaccines and therapeutics to benefit more patients. This is aligned with CBC’s mission of delivering quality and accessible medical innovation across Asia and beyond. The collaboration will also enhance the technological capability of our ecosystem, which fits well with Singapore’s commitment to mission-oriented and curiosity-driven R&D.”