WuXi AppTec's Subsidiary to Open Up Shop in San Diego

WuXi AppTec's Subsidiary to Open Up Shop in San Diego August 8, 2016
By Alex Keown, BioSpace.com Breaking News Staff

SAN DIEGO – Shanghai SynTheAll Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (STA), a subsidiary of Chinese R&D firm WuXi AppTec has secured a physical toehold in the United States, opening an operation site in San Diego that will provide process research and development as well as API manufacturing services for early phase clinical studies.

STA is a contract development and manufacturing organization for innovative small molecule active pharmaceutical ingredients and advanced intermediates, from preclinical through commercial.

"Our new U.S. based presence with a highly experienced scientific and production team is another step towards better enabling our partners through added capacity, greater flexibility, and our customer-centric approach to drug development and manufacturing services,” Minzhang Chen, STA’s chief executive officer said in a statement.

Ge Li, chairman and CEO of WuXi, said the San Diego facility brings the company’s “comprehensive R&D services closer to our North American customers and partners in their efforts to improve patients' lives."

And WuXi has formed several partnerships with U.S. companies, including through investments, such as startups like Unity Biotechnology and Ideaya Biosciences, Inc.

In April, WuXi formed a partnership with Seattle-based Juno Therapeutics to develop treatments for cancer with the formation of a new Chinese company called JW Biotechnology Co., Ltd. The new Chinese company’s mission will be to build a cell therapy company in China through using Juno’s chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) and T cell receptor (TCR) technologies in combination with WuXi AppTec's R&D and manufacturing platform.

Headquartered in Shanghai, WuXi has a global footprint of over 6.0 million square feet of R&D space across 26 sites around the world. The company has a large footprint in the United States, with facilities in Cambridge, Mass., Plainsboro, N.J., Philadelphia, Landsale, Penn., St. Paul, Minn. and Atlanta. The company also operates sites in Germany, Iceland, Israel, South Korea and Japan.

San Diego has become a strong hub for biopharma and biomedical research. Currently there are more than 1,000 life science companies and more than 80 research institutes in the area. The San Diego life science sector, alone, employs more than 42,000 people. The highest average wages in the region is $107,000 for biotechnology and pharmaceuticals and $99,500 for biomedical devices and products, according to the San Diego Economic Development. Companies in San Diego include Pfizer , Johnson & Johnson and Merck Research Laboratories , as well as companies such as Arena Pharmaceuticals (developer of chronic weight management drug BELVIQ) and Genentech (focused on drugs that treat age-related macular degeneration).

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