Pfizer To Invest an Additional $500 Million in Gene-Therapy Mfg Facility
Pfizer is investing an additional $500 million in the construction of its gene-therapy manufacturing facility in Sanford, North Carolina. Pfizer says this facility will support its continuing investment in gene-therapy research and development, similar to Pfizer’s Chapel Hill and Kit Creek, North Carolina research and development sites. The investment is part of an overall plan by Pfizer to invest approximately $5 billion in US-based capital projects over the next several years.
Pfizer says this facility will add approximately 300 new jobs to the 3,600 jobs the company currently has in North Carolina. In addition to its gene-therapy operations, Pfizer’s Sanford facility also manufactures components for the company’s vaccine portfolio, including its pneumococcal vaccine, Prevnar 13, and several vaccines currently in Pfizer’s research pipeline.
Pfizer says by expanding its manufacturing footprint in Sanford, it expects to strengthen its ability to produce and supply both clinical- and commercial-scale quantities of gene-therapy medicines. Specifically, the new facility would help advance Pfizer’s work in manufacturing highly specialized, potentially one-time gene therapies that use custom-made recombinant adeno-associated virus vectors.
Pfizer is expanding its end-to-end capabilities in gene therapy in North Carolina by investing in facilities focused on all stages of research, development, and manufacturing. Pfizer’s Kit Creek facility, focuses on small-scale production from 2-liter flasks up to 250-liter bioreactors to develop the process that may eventually be used in larger-scale manufacturing. That process is optimized at its Chapel Hill facility at a 250-liter scale.
This month (August 2019), Pfizer completed the first phase of the expansion project at its facility in Sanford.