WuXi Biologics to build manufacturing plant in the US

By Murielle Gonzalez 12-Jun-2018

Biotech company will invest US$60 million in a biologics manufacturing site in Massachusetts

L-R (front row): Craig L. Blais, president and CEO of WBDC, Dr Weichang Zhou, CTO and SVP of WuXi Biologics, Karyn Polito, Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts, Joseph M. Petty, Mayor of City of Worcester, Travis McCready, president and CEO of the MLSC

WuXi Biologics, the Hong Kong-listed company that focuses on end-to-end solutions for biologics discovery, development and manufacturing, has announced an investment plan totalling US$60 million to establish a state-of-the-art biologics clinical and commercial manufacturing facility in Worcester, Massachusetts.

The new facility will be WuXi Biologics' 11th global drug substance manufacturing site and the first in the United States.

The investment plan is supported by the Government of Massachusetts, the Worcester Business Development Corporation (WBDC) and the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center (MLSC).

Presented as a "facility of the future", the new site will be built upon the novel approach that WuXi Biologics has pioneered in deploying single-use bioreactors.

It is also designed to run continuous bioprocessing, a next-generation manufacturing technology to be implemented in America for the first time, the company said.

A total of approximately 4,500L bioreactor capacity will be installed with two 2,000L traditional fed-batch and one 500L perfusion-based continuous processing. This facility will handle both clinical and small volume commercial production. An early-stage bioprocess development lab will also be included.

Dr Chris Chen, CEO of WuXi Biologics, commented: "The new site will undoubtedly meet WuXi Biologics' growing need for biologics development and manufacturing in the near future. Many partners of WuXi Biologics are located within two hours of this new site. We are all very excited to initiate our first US site to enable local companies and expedite biologics development in the United States. We are committed to becoming the most comprehensive capability and technology platform in the global biologics industry to enable both local and global partners."

WuXi Biologics also said it will hire approximately 150 employees.

Sign up for your free email newsletter

"Massachusetts is home to one of the world's most dynamic life sciences ecosystems, with leading companies, top-tier academic institutions, and a globally-competitive workforce," said Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker. "We are enriched when companies grow and invest here and are pleased to welcome WuXi Biologics' expansion," he concluded.