The global biotech's M600 R&D center is situated on the grounds of the research campus in Marburg’s Görzhausen Industrial Park. Construction began in November 2019 and will be completed later this calendar year.
The R&D campus is nearly 40,000 sqm in size and includes 7,000 sqm of laboratory space, 7,000 sqm of workspace, and 800 sqm of space for start-ups from the region. It will also provide space for around 500 CSL research and development employees as well as academic and cooperation partners.
Sustainability was at the ‘forefront of the design’ of the new building. Construction was planned in accordance with the KfW (German government investment and development bank) eligibility criteria for green financing.
The investment is in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. It contributes to the Sustainable Development Goals No. 7 (affordable and clean energy) and No. 13 (climate protection). Special features of the modern energy concept include equipping the building with an ice storage system and heat pumps.
M600 is equipped with advanced laboratories and technical resources and combines various forms of working areas for active work under one roof.
In addition, the building also houses laboratory space for external collaborators, with the aim of contributing to the overall R&D ecosystem (it is located near universities, institutes and biomedical centers, with the advantage of providing ‘efficient access to external talent’).
"Investing in Marburg makes sense for us as this region helped shape CSL today," said Paul Perreault, CSL CEO and Managing Director. "The building complex was constructed using state-of-the-art technologies in accordance with strict sustainability criteria and will make Marburg, Central Hesse, and Hesse a beacon of biotechnology far beyond the state and national borders."
"The science and innovation taking place in Marburg and across the region will help us to shape CSL's future in a sustainable way, and we hope that it will drive further development of the region into a globally recognized innovation center," said Dr. Bill Mezzanotte, Head of R&D and Chief Medical Officer for CSL. "The new R&D hub will continue to play a critical role in the global R&D investment strategy for CSL."
Global R&D expansion
Headquartered in Melbourne, Australia, CSL Limited has three businesses: CSL Behring, CSL Seqirus, and CSL Vifor – providing products to patients in more than 100 countries and employing more than 30,000 people.
It notes its overall R&D organization is growing, with more than 2,000 R&D employees in nine countries around the world (in addition to Marburg, the company has an R&D presence in Melbourne, Australia; Bern, Switzerland; Amsterdam, Netherlands, King of Prussia, Pennsylvania; Pasadena, California, and Waltham, Massachusetts).
The CSL Behring business already has a manufacturing presence in Marburg, and the company's history is rooted in the town.
"It's here where Emil von Behring, one of the founders of our CSL Behring business unit who won the first Nobel Prize in Medicine for pioneering the use of plasma to treat patients suffering from diphtheria, lived and worked", said Perreault.
"While plasma remains one of our strategic scientific platforms, we have evolved and innovated over the decades – also discovering, developing, and delivering medicines and vaccines across the scientific platforms of Recombinant Technology, Cell and Gene Therapy, and Cell-based, egg-based, adjuvanted, and sa-mRNA vaccines. The science and innovation that takes place here will help us continue to build CSL's promising future in a sustainable way and, we hope, will help drive the evolution of Marburg as a global center for innovation for patients into the future."