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Health benefits company Anthem, Inc. last week entered into a build-to-suit agreement with Portman Holdings for a new 352,000-sq.-ft., 21-story building in Midtown Atlanta where it will base some 3,000 IT professionals beginning in early 2020. “This new investment is a critical part of the Tech Square expansion and delivers on the commitment we announced last year to grow our IT footprint in Atlanta and the state,” said Jeff Fusile, president of Anthem’s affiliated Blue Cross and Blue Shield health plan in Georgia. “When this building opens in 2020, it will join the City’s dynamic line-up of technology companies, enabling us to tap into the area’s highly skilled talent pipeline.” The new building will be near the Georgia Tech campus and the new Coda incubator/accelerator now under construction.
A West Virginia site, Willow Island in Pleasants County, has beat out competitor sites in Europe and Asia for a new 30-job, multi-phase, $70-million investment by Solvay that will create up to 40 jobs over the next few years.
Shown here is a pseudo-colored scanning electron micrograph of an oral squamous cancer cell (white) being attacked by two cytotoxic T cells (red), part of a natural immune response. Nanomedicine researchers are creating personalized cancer vaccines by loading neoantigens identified from the patient's tumor into nanoparticles.
National Cancer Institute/Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center at Baylor College of Medicine
The National Institutes of Health and 11 leading biopharmaceutical companies last week launched the Partnership for Accelerating Cancer Therapies (PACT), a five-year public-private research collaboration totaling $215 million and focused on immunotherapy treatments as part of the Cancer Moonshot. Additional support has been provided by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association (PhRMA). NIH's National Cancer Institute (NCI) recently awarded cooperative agreements to support four Cancer Immune Monitoring and Analysis Centers (CIMACs) and a Cancer Immunologic Data Commons (CIDC) with a total of $53.6 million in funding over five years. The agreements are with Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston (CIMAC and CIDC); Stanford Cancer Institute, Stanford, California (CIMAC); Precision Immunology Institute and the Tisch Cancer Institute at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York (CIMAC) and University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston (CIMAC).
A team devoted to drone delivery of medical cargo continues to tally achievements at Johns Hopkins University, most recently setting a medical drone delivery record by successfully transporting human blood samples for three hours across 161 miles of desert in Arizona.
“Drone air transport will be the quickest, safest and most efficient option to deliver biological samples to a laboratory whether it be in a rural or urban setting,” says Timothy Amukele, M.D., Ph.D. “We don’t need to fix 20th Century problems, such as no roads, poor roads or driving vehicles through crowded urban streets to improve patient care. Logistical inefficiencies are an enemy of patient care. Drones will take patient care into the 21st Century by making patient diagnoses quicker and more efficient.”
A temperature-controlled specimen transport container designed by Johns Hopkins researchers was packed with blood sample test tubes and flown 161 miles across the Arizona desert in a Latitude HQ-40 unmanned aircraft.
Photo courtesy of Johns Hopkins Medicine
Piramal Pharma Solutions (PPS), a leading Contract Development and Manufacturing Organisation (CDMO) and part of India-based Piramal Enterprises Ltd. (PEL), has announced investments of $55 million across its sites in North America & Asia, to expand its active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) manufacturing capabilities and capacities in locations that include Riverview, Michigan; Ennore, India; and Morpeth, UK. Piramal supports API development and manufacturing through an integrated model across its five sites in North America, Europe and Asia. API Development activities including route scouting and process development are conducted at facilities in Aurora (CA), Ennore (IN) and Riverview (USA). These facilities are forward integrated with commercial API manufacturing units at Aurora (CA), Ennore (IN), Digwal (IN), Morpeth (UK) and Riverview (USA). Meanwhile, Piramal Realty has launched Mumbai's largest non-IT commercial development, Agastya Corporate Park, where the parent firm will consolidate more than 800 employees as the anchor tenant. The campus design is based on the principle of biophilia, which seeks to connect human life and nature.
This conceptual map shows where Piramal maintains locations in its integrated pharma solutions network.
Image courtesy of Piramal
Enterome SA, a pioneer of innovative therapies for microbiome-related diseases that is based in Paris, in September announced it is moving its research laboratories to Genopole, a cluster of some 86 companies located about 30 km. (18.6 miles) south of the city. About 15 of the 40 people employed by Enterome will work permanently at Genopole in laboratories dedicated to the discovery and development of innovative therapeutic products derived from the gut microbiome.
"The strategic relocation of our laboratories is a key step for developing our technology platform," said Pierre Belichard, CEO of Enterome. "Genopole is recognized internationally for the quality of its facilities and the professionalism of the technical team, which was a key factor in our decision to make our research headquarters at Genopole."
Shire Pharma Canada ULC celebrated the official opening of new offices in downtown Toronto last Thursday, marking their continued commitment to invest in Canada. The new location is ideally situated in Canada's largest biotech cluster. "Our new Toronto location provides access to a thriving life sciences sector and is a great base from which to attract talent for the organization," said Eric Tse, general manager for Shire Canada. "It will also serve to promote closer collaboration and strengthen relationships with key external stakeholders in academic research, clinical practice, patient advocacy and medical innovation."
Cutting the ribbon at the Official Opening of Shire Canada. From left to right: Kim Stratton, Head of International Commercial - Shire; Kate White, Director - The National Gaucher Foundation of Canada; The Hon. Reze Moridi - Ontario Minister of Research, Innovation and Science; Eric Tse, General Manager - Shire Canada.
Photo courtesy of CNW Group/Shire Pharma Canada ULC
The Florida State University-headquartered National High Magnetic Field Laboratory will be home to a new National Institutes of Health Biomedical Technology Resource Center that will develop unique instrumentation for work in high magnetic fields to combat diseases like Alzheimer’s and tuberculosis. To create the center, the National MagLab will receive a $5.8 million grant from the NIH. The MagLab is already home to several world-record magnets, including the strongest magnet in the world for nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) — the new 36-tesla series connected hybrid. More than 40 research groups worldwide are participating in the project.
Photo courtesy of GE Healthcare
The GE corporate newsroom continues to tell its own stories pretty well, including this account of GE Healthcare’s first Innovative Design and Advanced Manufacturing Technology Center in Europe, located in Uppsala, Sweden. The site will serve clients such as Amgen using additive printing (pictured), among other technologies.
Puns are abundant in the medical marijuana industry, and a real estate development firm is no exception: Zoned Properties, Inc., in September revealed its long-term master plan for its Chino Valley Cultivation Facility, a 47.6-acre property in Northern Arizona that will include office space, housing and even a large-scale solar power installation.
"Today's operating facilities include a small portion of what has been approved in collaboration with local officials as part of a long-term development deal with the municipality," said Bryan McLaren, CEO of Zoned Properties, which has several projects seeking to be active ingredients in the licensed medical marijuana marketplace. "As market demand continues to grow, the Chino Valley Cultivation Facility is well-positioned to expand into a much larger development that can service the entire state of Arizona. The master plan includes roughly 25 acres of operational space dedicated to medical marijuana cultivation and processing, which can be leased at premium rental rates compared to traditional commercial real estate."
The property has been leased to a licensed medical marijuana cultivation tenant over a 20-year term with a triple-net (NNN) lease structure.
An artist's rendering of planned expansion at Zoned Properties’ Chino Valley Cultivation Facility in northern Arizona.
Image courtesy of Zoned Properties