Moderna, Thermo Fisher Expand as Life Sciences Sector Continues to Prosper

Moderna_Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

The COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t hammered the life sciences industry as much as other parts of the economy, as marked by recent announcements of new manufacturing sites, headquarters and additional staff. Here’s a look.

Moderna Investing in New Cambridge, Mass. Science Center

Moderna has picked long-time partner Alexandria Real Estate Equities to develop, build and operate a new headquarters on the Alexandria Center at One Kendall Square campus in Cambridge, Mass. It will be 462,000 square feet and will be the Moderna Science Center. The company said, “The new site will include custom spaces for leading-edge research and development. The building will integrate scientific and non-scientific spaces to maximize collaboration and provoke disruptive innovation.”

Construction has already started, and they expect to be able to begin moving in during 2023.

“We have been located in Massachusetts since our founding more than 10 years ago and are proud to be based here,” said Stephane Bancel, Moderna’s chief executive officer. “As we advance our mRNA platform and science, our new science center will integrate digital-first scientific research and development labs along with space for innovation and co-creation with our people and our partners around the world.”

Thermo Fisher Scientific Expanding in St. Louis and Switzerland

Thermo Fisher Scientific announced plans to invest $82.5 million in its biologic drug substance manufacturing site in St. Louis County, Mo. It expects to create 169 new jobs.

“This new expansion will enable further innovation in biologics manufacturing to address the continued growth in important therapies and medicines,” said Michel Lagarde, executive vice president, Thermo Fisher Scientific. “We look forward to our continued contribution to job creation and economic development in this region.”

The Waltham, Mass.-based company also announced it has assumed operational responsibility for a new biologics manufacturing facility in Lengnau, Switzerland. This is part of its strategic partnership with CSL Limited announced in 2020. The location will be part of the company’s global biologics manufacturing network. About 200 staffers will join Thermo Fisher. The location has 1.5 million square feet of space and includes a highly flexible bioproduction technology, including single-use and stainless steel capabilities with up to 12,500L bioreactor capacity.

“We are excited to add the new Lengnau site to our global biologics manufacturing network and we are thrilled to welcome more than 200 new colleagues to Thermo Fisher,” said Lagarde. “Through our partnership with CSL, this site further strengthens our unique customer value proposition to leverage our scale and depth of capabilities for pharma and biotech customers.”

Sartorius Expands Presence in Michigan

Aubagne, France-based Sartorius is expanding operations in Michigan, with plans to open a new 130,000-square-foot plant in Ann Arbor. It will “have an anchoring presence” in the Tech Loop at the Ann Arbor Research Park as well as add a flagship location in North America. It has acquired more than 15 acres of land. They expect to create 160 jobs over three years.

“The new facility will consolidate existing business operations in Washtenaw County to create a center of excellence in Ann Arbor for the Laboratory and Bioprocess Products and Services in North America, which focus on providing innovative solutions to help customers develop drugs that cure, prevent, and halt the progression of diseases,” said Mary Lavin, president of Sartorius North America.

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