Thermo Fisher expands US viral vector manufacturing capabilities

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

Exterior of the new viral vector manufacturing facility in Plainville, Massachusetts © Thermo Fisher Scientific
Exterior of the new viral vector manufacturing facility in Plainville, Massachusetts © Thermo Fisher Scientific

Related tags cell and gene therapy Viral vector Thermo fisher scientific

Thermo Fisher Scientific has opened its new viral vector manufacturing facility in Plainville, Massachusetts.

The company, which invested US$180m in the new build, said these new operations will extend its viral vectors network to six sites and will help meet the global demand for gene therapies by addressing critical challenges related to scalability, productivity, and yield.  

With hundreds of viral vector therapeutics in late-stage development or in clinical trials, demand from biopharma for viral vector production has grown exponentially and new capacity is critical.

The new site, which is 300,000-square-foot (27870.9 sq. m) in scale, will add more than 300 employees - across science, engineering, manufacturing, QA/QC, finance, warehouse, and more, said the firm.

Previously, Thermo Fisher flagged that it had strategically selected Plainville as the location for the viral vector production site on the basis that it would be able to capitalize on its expertise at other Massachusetts locations and also would be able to draw upon the strong talent pool in the Greater Boston area.

The organization said it is continuing to invest and innovate cell and gene therapy services, products, and workflows.

The Plainville site, it added, is part of an investment strategy to provide pharmaceutical customers with fully integrated capabilities that connect the entire cell and gene therapy value chain — from early development and clinical scale-up to commercial manufacturing. These include translational sciences labs for early-stage development; plasmid DNA manufacturing; viral vector services; cell therapy manufacturing; and, integrated commercial packaging and distribution services. 

Commenting, Marc N Casper, chief executive officer of Thermo Fisher Scientific, said: “We are enabling our customers to speed their scientific discoveries in cell and gene therapy while also supporting their manufacturing needs, whether they are early in the development process or ready to transition to clinical or commercial scale.”

Earlier this month, the company said it had invested US$76m in the expansion of its dry powder media manufacturing facility in Grand Island, New York. The move was aimed at increasing production capacity of the raw materials used in manufacture of vaccines and biologic therapies.

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