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Pfizer to shut Australian Neulasta biosimilar plant and move production to Croatia

By Gareth MacDonald+

Last updated on 10-Feb-2017 at 12:15 GMT2017-02-10T12:15:49Z

Pfizer API plant to close by 2021 (source Google maps)
Pfizer API plant to close by 2021 (source Google maps)

Pfizer will close the Australian plant which produces the API for HSP-130, a candidate version of Amgen’s Neulasta, and shift production to Croatia.

The US drug firm said it will wind up operations at the facility in the Adelaide suburb Thebarton by 2021, citing existing capacity and a desire to consolidate manufacturing activities.

The firm said the 89 people employed at the plant will be deployed elsewhere.

A Pfizer spokeswoman confirmed the closure, telling us the “Adelaide produces filgrastim intermediate and ships this to Zagreb for pegylation and filling into pre-filled syringes.

She added that: “The manufacturing of filgrastim intermediate will be transferred to Croatia.”

The spokeswoman also confirmed that "There are no other APIs being made at the facility and no open contracts with other pharmaceutical companies."

Change of plan

The decision to close reverses a plan Pfizer announced last March , which would have seen the US firm spend A$21m (€16m) to add manufacturing capacity in a newly constructed plant on land adjacent to the existing facility.

According to a pipeline update issued by Pfizer in November  its candidate Neulasta biosimilar HSP-130 is currently being examined in a Phase II clinical study at sites in Hungary and Spain.

In an official statement sent to this publication Pfizer said: "Our colleagues in Adelaide and work they continue to do will be vital in ensuring a successful launch of the product that is being manufactured there until the transfer of operations is complete."

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