San Diego-based Biotech Expands for Future Growth and Top Talent

Published: Aug 09, 2017

San Diego-based Biotech Expands for Future Growth and Top Talent August 7, 2017
By Alex Keown, Breaking News Staff

SAN DIEGO – Things are heating up in the hotbed of biotech activity around San Diego. Ground will soon be broken on a new eight acre development that will become the home for BioLegend, a developer of antibodies and reagents for biomedical research.

The new space will allow the company to plan for future growth, the company said in a statement on its website. What that growth will look like remains to be seen.

The new campus will feature a seven-story parking garage that will have space for 700 automobiles. The garage will be behind a main office and research building. The grounds will also include an atrium and landscaped grounds.

“We recently completed Phase 1 and we learned a lot through that design, permitting and construction process. We took a close look at ourselves as a company, as a family, and decided to prioritize specific features that prove we value our team, encouraging collaboration between departments, and providing functional and efficient lab space,” Gene Lay, chief executive officer and founder of BioLegend said in a statement.

Lay added that the goal of the facility is for other companies, as well as potential employees, to see the type of campus BioLegend will have and recognize the company and the site “as a place of legendary discovery.”

On its website, BioLegend stressed the beauty of the landscaping as well as the open concept of its planned laboratory space. The company also pointed to two additional amenities employees asked for – a kitchen and gymnasium. Having space for relaxation, such as the planned game rooms and yoga studio, will allow employees, many of whom are millennials, to have time to decompress on site. Lay said the company wants to promote a healthy lifestyle for its employees.

“As a growing biotech company that values its family, BioLegend wanted to create an environment worthy of the best talent and a place that exudes collaboration and legendary discovery,” the company said.

Ground is expected to be broken later this month with the project completed in 2019.

The new space will allow BioLegend to expand its research in some recently acquired technology to study antigen-specific T cells. Last year, BioLegend licensed a peptide-MHC assay technology from Sanquin Blood Supply Foundation. The technology is designed to allow the user to prepare his or her own customized tetramer reagents in their laboratories, as needed. By using ultraviolet radiation, the special pre-loaded peptide in the MHC molecules can be released and substituted by the researcher’s peptide of interest.

That technology follows the 2014 acquisition of Massachusetts-based Covance Inc. that develops and manufactures antibodies and research reagents for neuroscience, immunopathology, cell biology, epitope tags, and immunohistochemistry detection.

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