• Introduction
    Samyang Biopharmaceuticals is the first company to commercialize the mass production of paclitaxel (Genexol®) through the plant cell culture technology.
    • General name : Paclitaxel
    • Chemical formula : C47H51NO14
    • Molecular weight : 853.9
    • CAS Number : 33069-62-4


    Paclitaxel is an active pharmaceutical ingredient(API) that has an antitumor activity. Paclitaxel has been very effective in lowering or stopping the growth of various cancer cells including melanoma cells, leukemia, various carcinomas, sarcomas, non-Hodgkin lymphomas, as well as a number of solid tumors in animal models. Many research projects show promising results of paclitaxel`s efficacy on other types of cancer cells.

    Advantage of Genexol

    Genexol® can compete with any other paclitaxel in quality, consistency and cost. Plant cell culture technology enables us to manufacture Genexol® with a high purity, constant yield, high productivity, low purification cost, and no negative environmental problems.

  • Production method

    Paclitaxel originates from the bark of the Pacific yew tree, "Taxus brevifolia".
    However, supplies of yew bark are scarce, and current extraction procedures are inadequate to meet the increasing demands of paclitaxel.

    In addition, deforestation due to extensive harvesting of yew trees has become an environmental problem. At the present time, yew trees are classified as endangered species, and harvesting is prohibited. To overcome the limitation of resources, complete synthetic of producing paclitaxel has been attempted. However, the chemical's molecular structure is so complex that commercial production is not feasible. Based on the efforts of total synthesis, Bristol-Myers Squibb developed a semi-synthesis process from 10-DAB, which showed high concentration in renewable Taxus needles. Inspite of fewer steps and use of renewable needle sources, the production costs of paclitaxel are still high. Production of adequate supplies of paclitaxel and precursors used in semi-synthetic processes may ultimately rely on biological processes like cell culture.

    To select stable high-producing cell lines, more than 300 cell lines were induced and selected from various kinds of Taxus trees by our research team. Samyang has also developed a process that greatly increased the production of paclitaxel. Extraction and purification processes were also developed to obtain highly purified Genexol® at high yield. Our pharmaceutical plant is the first plant cell culture facility for producing paclitaxel in the world.

    Plant Cell Culture

    • Yew Tree Image

      ① Yew Tree

    • Callus Induction Image

      ② Callus Induction

    • Callus Image

      ③ Callus

    • Suspension Culture Image

      ④ Suspension Culture

    • Scale-up Image

      ⑤ Scale-up

    • Puriflcation Image

      ⑥ Puriflcation

    • Genexol Image

      ⑦ Genexol