Innovative scientific platforms

Ipsen has a leading-edge technological platform in toxins, in which we stand out for our acknowledged expertise. This specialist knowledge also opens the door to the possibility of strong external partnerships in the field. With their unique properties, toxin molecules offer potential in the treatment of neuromuscular disorders, as well as for pain and aesthetic medicine.

From natural botulinum toxins to recombinant production of toxins


Natural toxins with varied and targeted properties

Ipsen scientists have spent 25 years researching the mechanisms and potential applications of botulinum toxin type A. This complex protein is an extremely powerful neurotoxin produced by the Clostridium botulinum bacterium. Now used in the treatment of spasticity, botulinum toxin inhibitors make it an effective treatment for conditions affecting the junction between the muscle and the nerve, at the root of hypercontraction of some parts of the body. This unique molecule has a much broader range of potential therapeutic applications in many areas, in neurology mainly, but also in oncology, endocrinology and aesthetic medicine.

Ipsen is one of the very few companies to master the manufacture and control of this product, together with the technologies required to explore new applications and to develop new toxin-based products.


Recombinant toxins: innovative hybrid molecules

Produced conventionally to date by extraction of the bacterial strains obtained from cultures, new techniques open the way for recombinant production of the toxins: introduced into the bacterial strain, genes provide new sequencing and thereby offer the potential for “on-demand” modification of the properties of the toxins.

Based in Milton Park, Oxford, in the UK, Ipsen Bioinnovation (formerly known as Syntaxin) is a leader in the field of recombinant botulinum toxin technology with expertise in natural recombinant botulinum toxins and modified recombinant botulinum toxins. This R&D center is at the forefront of Ipsen’s expertise thanks to a platform of highly differentiated and innovative toxins with 75 patents granted and over 130 patents pending. Ipsen has also started collaborating on research with the Harvard Medical School to explore novel recombinant botulinum toxins for the treatment of serious neurological disorders.


The Ipsen way: an open innovation model

Our focus is on sharing projects and objectives. Proof of concept is the cornerstone of the drug discovery process, the principle used by all involved to determine the entire life cycle of the molecule in R&D as early as possible. This participatory model contributes to finding answers to key questions such as the singularity and differentiation of each molecule.


Percentage of sales invested in R&D in 2016

Last update 12/10/2017