Biologics manufacturing facility expansion
In March 2019, BioVectra announced plans to expand its biologics manufacturing facility in Windsor, Nova Scotia, Canada.
The project is part of a five-year C$144.6m ($86.1m) expansion programme that includes the company’s Windsor, Charlottetown and Prince Edward Island facilities.
The investment will support the company’s collaborations with various Canadian universities and research institutes, as well as create jobs in the Canadian pharmaceutical industry.
BioVectra’s 50,000ft² facility in Windsor will be expanded with the addition of a new mammalian cell-culture facility. The project includes renovations and installation of new equipment, as well as expanded microbial fermentation capabilities.
The expansion will enable the facility to develop and manufacture biologic drug substances to be used in developing treatments for cancer, autoimmune diseases and diabetes.
Zero-emission materials will be used to construct the facility and reduce the building’s environmental impact.
The Government of Canada provided C$37.5m ($28.2m) through the Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) for the project. It is one of the biggest social investment fund (SIF) projects in the Atlantic Canada region. SIF aims to increase business investments in various sectors to improve the region’s economy.
The Government of Canada previously invested C$5m ($3.74m) through the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency’s (ACOA) Business Development Programme for the expansion of the Windsor facility in April 2018. The ACOA works to create economic growth opportunities for the Atlantic Canadian people.
The existing investment is expected to support on-the-job training and provide internship opportunities to more than 25 students a year to generate a future workforce.
The project will support the manufacturing capacity of the company and improve the research and development (R&D) capabilities of advanced pharmaceutical products that are not currently manufactured in Canada.
The expansion will create approximately 110 new jobs in the Windsor facility, while a total of 150 jobs will be generated across both the facilities adding to the existing workforce of 300 people.
Jobs will be generated across the rural Annapolis Valley communities present in the western region of Nova Scotia.
Opened in 2017, the Windsor facility is the company’s fourth current good manufacturing practice (cGMP) site in its microbial fermentation and complex chemistries business. Development of the site increased the company’s total manufacturing capacity by 40%.
The facility is equipped with 40,000l of fermentation bioreactor capacity and downstream processing equipment. It also features suites for pre-clinical fermentation and potent chemistry.
The company has been investing approximately $25m ($18.7m) a year for the expansion since 2015. Being located close to the north-eastern US, the facility provides services to development bodies in the region.
Based in Canada, BioVectra is a subsidiary of Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals. This contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO) meets the requirements of biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies worldwide.
The company has experience in microbial fermentation, complex chemistry, high-potency active pharmaceutical ingredients (API), process and analytical development, ass well as biologics and drug development.
The company has four facilities, three in Charlottetown and one in Windsor. The facilities feature 50,000l of chemical reactor space, 64,000l of fermentation bioreactor capacity, US Pharmacopoeia (USP) purified water system, downstream purification capabilities, cGMP and non-cGMP manufacturing, and other capabilities for drying, milling, blending and lyophilisation.
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