Shionogi & Co’s new pharmaceutical research facility is located in Toyonaka City in Osaka, Japan. The new facility was opened in August 2011. It is equipped with drug discovery research laboratories and laboratory equipment, as well as information technology capabilities.
The new facility was built with an investment of about ¥18.9bn ($247m). It will serve as the main research facility for Shionogi. With the construction of the facility, Shionogi has integrated drug discovery research operations into the Shionogi Pharmaceutical Research Centre (SPRC). These operations were earlier dispersed between four other sites in Osaka and Shiga Prefectures. The SPRC will now include the new facility and the existing three sites in Osaka.
The aim of establishing the SPRC is to achieve leading research productivity in drug discovery. The SPRC integrates different drug research functions of the company, such as basic to exploratory research, synthetic and early-stage formulation research, into a single location.
Facilities at Shionogi’s Toyonaka City research facility
The research facility covers an area of 34,627.97m² spread over five stories. The built-up area of the research centre is about 9,800m² and it has a total floor space of about 43,000m². Operations at the new facility began in mid-August 2011.
Each floor of the facility provides space for about 160 researchers. The state-of-the-art drug discovery laboratories of the facility are equipped with sophisticated laboratory equipment.
The design of the new facility specifically stimulates creativity and supports innovation by increasing communication and mutual collaboration among the researchers. A wellhole space located in the building conveys a feeling of unity among the researchers. The facility also includes several meeting areas and relaxation corners.
The new facility provides support for maximum creativity and high productivity for drug discovery research functions.
Pharmaceutical research facility technology
The research facility features modern and sophisticated drug discovery equipment. It includes a 25l mini plant reactor system, which enables the researchers to perform medium-scale synthesis of candidate compounds. It also has a high-content screening system that provides high-throughput screening of compounds against novel drug targets.
The safety aspect was given top priority during the designing of the biochemistry laboratories, which are arranged functionally with respect to the measuring instruments.
Construction of Shionogi’s research facility
The facility is located in the same premises as Shionogi’s developmental research laboratories. Ground breaking for the facility took place in September 2008. Construction was completed in July 2011. It was constructed using quake-absorbing materials, steel and reinforced concrete.
The facility was built according to environmentally friendly standards. The environment-friendly triple skin structure of the facility reduces about 40% of the heat load from outside. The facility was adopted as a model project of housing and buildings for promoting carbon emission reduction by Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism in 2009.
Takenaka Corporation was responsible for design and construction of the facility.
Company headquarters and marketing commentary
Shonan Research Center, Japan
Shonan Research Center is a new drug discovery and development centre located in Fujisawa City, Kanagawa prefecture, Japan. Built at a cost of ¥147bn ($1.9bn), the plant was officially inaugurated in February 2011.
Osaka-based Shionogi & Co is a leading pharmaceutical research company. It has over 5,277 employees and its core areas of activity involve research and development, production, and marketing activities, with a focus on prescription drugs, OTC drug and diagnostics. The company’s operations are spread over Europe and North America.
Shionogi built the new drug research facility to upgrade its research capabilities and improve its global competitiveness. Through the facility, Shionogi will focus on tapping unmet medical needs by deploying various technologies such as small molecule drug discovery. It will continuously supply innovative pharmaceuticals to the patients in Japan and the world.
The new facility will also serve as the foundation for Shionogi’s growth over the next 10 to 20 years. Shionogi’s research is targeted on three main areas, which include metabolic syndrome, pain, and infectious diseases. The research facility will provide the company with top-class global research capabilities to focus on these areas.