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Thermo Fisher Scientific announces major investment plan to boost production capabilities

By Mary Page Bailey |

Thermo Fisher Scientific (Waltham, Mass.; www.thermofisher.com) is investing more than $475 million in new capabilities and capacity in 2020. This investment, in addition to those made in 2019, brings the total investment over two years to approximately $800 million across the company’s pharma services business.

Thermo Fisher is strategically investing to align capabilities and capacity around three areas of greatest demand: biologics, cell and gene therapy, and drug product development and commercial capabilities.

Thermo Fisher’s St. Louis site completed its $50 million expansion, doubling production capacity for biological drug substance development and commercial manufacturing. It is now among the world’s largest producers of biologics using single-use technology, substantially increasing its ability to meet the clinical and commercial manufacturing needs of customers as they rapidly advance medicines to patients in need. In July, a new Bioprocessing Collaboration Center will open also within its St. Louis site, where multiple Thermo Fisher businesses will jointly develop innovative new bioprocessing products, workflows and services for customers.

Following its acquisition of Brammer Bio, and in direct response to growing demand for new viral vector manufacturing capacity, Thermo Fisher rapidly expanded its viral vector development and manufacturing capabilities, opening a new site in Lexington, Mass. and expanding sites in Cambridge, Mass. and Alachua, Fla. Elsewhere, the company will open a new cell therapy development and manufacturing collaboration center in Princeton, N.J, combining pharma services and biosciences expertise from across the broader Thermo Fisher network. The new cell therapy facility will come online at the same location later this year.

Thermo Fisher is also committed to helping drug product manufacturers scale smoothly from low-volume development to low- and high-volume commercial manufacturing. For developers whose molecules face solubility challenges, Thermo Fisher now offers commercial spray drying capabilities to enable a seamless pathway from early development to commercial approval. Likewise, to address the increased need for high-quality sterile/fill finish services, Thermo Fisher is making unprecedented investments to scale up its sterile drug development and commercial capabilities globally to cover a full range of dosage forms for sterile injectables.

To ensure consistent quality required by global regulatory authorities, Thermo Fisher now offers flexible continuous manufacturing capabilities, which can produce four times the volume of oral solid dosage forms than standard lines at consistent high quality. New commercial packaging capabilities increase therapy delivery speed to patients, even with smaller production runs or for oral solid dose and sterile drug product requiring flexibility. Lastly, Thermo Fisher’s new QC Lab of the Future, leveraging Thermo Fisher’s analytical instrument, automation and informatics capabilities, is a model for other pharmaceutical QC sites globally. The new lab integrates and automates workflows by combining capabilities across Thermo Fisher to deliver products faster with high quality and improved consistency.

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