Rooted in innovation
Spurring from academia, our legacy is deeply rooted in science. We are proud of our commitment to aligning with the market to innovate in a process-centric way. But we are proudest of the fact that we have many employees who have been working toward our vision since the start.
In the beginning, Dr. Jean-Paul Behr, Dr. Anne-Lise Monjanel, Mrs. Joelle Bloch and Mr. Patrick Metz, co-founded Polyplus-transfection to make highly effective and easy to use transfection reagents available to research scientists working in molecular and cell biology. Pioneering work from their laboratory led to the commercialization of well-known transfection reagents Transfectam®, Lipofectamine™ and Polyethylenimine (PEI).
After Patrick Erbacher received his PhD from the Centre of Molecular Biophysics, CNRS, Orléans, France in 1996, his post-grad work led him to meet Dr. Behr and team. Dr. Erbacher quickly became a participant in the initial funding efforts in 2001 and has managed R&D activity since, including the evolution of the flagship PEI products line. He is also a co-inventor of many patent applications and co-author of more than 60 publications.
Starting with institutional research funding, the team at Polyplus was able to grow the business with private investment, government and industry grants, and venture capital. In 2020, private equity companies, Archimed and Warburg Pincus, purchased a majority stake. This was the impetus for the evolution into a more tailored portfolio and services approach. Polyplus management has continued to demonstrate skill and foresight both in broadening the product range and accelerating the company’s globalization, leading to the acquisition of Polyplus by Sartorius in July 2023.
A global footprint
Polyplus headquarters is in Illkirch, in the suburbs of Strasbourg, the capital of the Alsace region. The facility is close to the University of Strasbourg in Eastern France and has been ISO 9001-certified since 2002 to supply a proprietary range of transfection reagents.
The area is considered the North-East part of France, close to Germany and Switzerland, making it a rich cultural scene. Not only does Alsace has a very strong cultural identity, but over the past few decades it has also become home to a growing number of small and large molecule and CGT companies.
Over time, the Polyplus footprint has grown across France from internal and external investments. In 2022, capital began to be deployed to work towards a more holistic upstream optimization offer. In February, in Loos, France. In December, fill/finish company, BioElpida, was acquired in Lyon, France. Expanding into Belgium, contract manufacturing and development organization, Xpress Biologics was acquired with headquarters in Liege, Belgium in December 2022, as well. This area in Belgium has also been a key center of growth for large molecules and CGT.
Satellite locations in New York, NY and Shanghai, China are complemented by a sales team that is dispersed globally, and a commitment to delivering full time access to field and customer support. We are also networked with distribution partners in markets where this model is needed.
When the investor structure was updated in 2020, we began expanding our focus to optimize upstream process economics for bioprocess developers. Undoubtedly, as the pharmaceutical industry has evolved, we have seen the advent of large molecule drugs go from early to later stages. We are now seeing this transformation in the advanced therapies sector with growing interest and advances in cell and gene therapies (CGTs), mRNA technologies, and more. The growing list of modalities drove our team to take a more process-focused approach to innovation within our own portfolio.
Particularly as we see an increase in therapeutic AAV candidates reaching the clinical trial pipeline, there is demand for innovative technologies to improve process development and facilitate manufacturing scale-up for future commercialization. It is not just about having the right product; it is about being able to make enough of it to achieve the goal. Working with viral vector manufacturers, our team developed a transfection reagent specifically for large scale manufacturing in suspension cell systems.
Custom plasmid vector design was integrated into the offer in 2022. Continued investment brought the addition of two focused CDMOS, one for DNA production and one for fill finish, expanding the European footprint. LNP formulation support was also added to the portfolio in 2023.
In the middle of 2023, Sartorius acquired Polyplus. The ability to expand the depth of impact to upstream process economics with an industry leader is something our team is very excited about.
Discover our journey
2001 Launch of in vivo-jetPEI®
in vivo-jetPEI® is introduced as the most advanced polyvalent solution for non-viral in vivo DNA or si/miRNA transfection in any animal model from research to clinical scale.
2007 in vivo-jetPEI® GMP
Achieving an industry first, in vivo-jetPEI® GMP injectable pharma grade transfection reagent is commercialized with ability to be used on all organs via various administration routes.
June 2023 Launch of FectoVIR®-LV
FectoVIR®-LV is introduced as an animal free solution to advance the productivity of lentiviral vector titers in HEK-293 derivative cell suspension systems while reducing costs and supporting scalability.
November 2023 Launch of Easy Plasmid Service
Explore our easy plasmid services starting at just $249. Our fully sequenced plasmids, ready for your research, include a miniprep. Reduce project costs, ensure quality, and save time with Polyplus.