US plant for Novartis:
Swiss pharma firm Novartis plans to build a plant in the US that will use the latest technology to produce avian flu vaccine more quickly for the US market. Chief executive Daniel Vasella said that the plant, which will cost about $400m, will use new cell-based culturing technologies. Novartis has not decided on a location but Mr Vasella said North Carolina was a strong possibility. He added that the site could later be used to produce other vaccines and biotech drugs such as monoclonal antibodies.
AstraZeneca to Expand Operations in China:
Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca has announced plans to make an additional investment of $37.5m in the next five years to expand its production capacity and upgrade production technology in China. The company also said that a new drug packaging production line, involving an investment of RMB31m ($3.9m), had just started operations in Wuxi.
Amgen to Open Middle East HQ:
California-based biotherapeutics company Amgen is to open its Middle East headquarters in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The office will focus on selling cancer and arthritis drugs to an estimated 300,000 patients throughout the Middle East and Africa.
Gambro to construct Plant in Alabama: Swedish-based medical technology firm Gambro Renal Products plans to build a 9290 square metre manufacturing plant in Opelika, Alabama, bringing 160 new jobs to the area. The plant will make Polyflux dialysers – artificial kidneys that remove impurities from the blood.
BD to Create 125 Jobs in Ireland:
New Jersey-based medical device company Becton, Dickinson and Company (BD) is to invest $63m, with the help of development agency IDA Ireland, in the development and expansion of its medical devices manufacturing plant in Drogheda, County Louth. The investment is expected to create another 125 jobs over five years.