The six-floor building at 650 E. Kendall Street in Cambridge is in the heart of the biotech district and near the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), company spokesman Brian Kyhos told BioPharma-Reporter.com.
Baxalta will be the primary tenant and will eventually occupy three and a half floors, according to Kyhos, and will lease approximately 200,000 square feet of space.
Work at the center will focus on advancing a pipeline focused on hematology and immunology drugs, as well as areas such as gene therapy and biosimilars.
“As we anticipate the spinoff as an independent biopharmaceutical company in 2015, we determined that creating a new R&D and innovation hub would enhance and accelerate our ability to deliver new treatments for patients,” Kyhos said.
“The biotech community around Cambridge includes more than 130 other biotech companies, 90 start-ups, 30 research and academic institutions and more than 14,000 biotech professionals who may be potential partners to help us advance our patient-centric platforms and leadership in clinical development, trials and testing for new and emerging therapeutics,” he added.
Approximately 400 employees will work at the center, including researchers from California and Europe as well as business development, oncology and biosimilars teams.
“Cambridge will be the new home for all of our human development programs and trials,” Kyhos continued, adding that “staff supporting early research and non-clinical activities, as well as our entire process development organization, will remain in Austria.”
Dr. John Orloff, vice president and global head of R&D for Baxter BioScience, predicted that the new center to increase R&D collaboration and efficiency.
“It will connect the company directly to a rich pool of talent in new and emerging biotech areas, and strengthen our ability to drive programs forward in cooperation with current and future partners," he said.
The company will soon start to transition work to the new facility.
“We will take over some temporary space within the next month, and implement a thoughtful and measured transition plan to fully occupy the building within the next two years,” added Kyhos.