STA Pharma Expands R&D/Commercial Site
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Part of the special news roundup of DCAT member companies for the DCAT Week ’17 Special Edition of DCAT Value Chain Insights (April 5, 2017)

STA Pharmaceutical (STA), a research and development (R&D) subsidiary of WuXi AppTec with a technology platform for small molecule process development and manufacturing, is expanding its new integrated R&D and commercial site in Changzhou, China in stages. On completion, the Changzhou site will include 500 scientists and more than 1000 cubic meters of reactor volume.

The company recently added a new pilot plant and 200 new process R&D scientists. The new pilot plant started operation in November 2016 with 40 reactors ranging from 250 liters to 5,000 liters. In addition, a second commercial plant will be installed in 2017, nearly doubling reactor volume in Changzhou to 490 cubic meters. As of January 2017, Changzhou had 60 reactors with a total reactor volume of 290 cubic meters. The first commercial plant opened a year ago with a milling system recently installed.

The Changzhou site, which was officially opened in March 2016, has grown to over 200 scientific personnel including 160 process chemists, 40 analytical chemists, and a specialist group of crystallization technology engineers trained for over a year at the company’s Shanghai R&D facility. The 10,000-square-meter R&D center currently has 24 process chemist laboratories and a process safety lab. Another 24 process chemistry labs as well as a catalysis center will be added in Changzhou by the end of 2017.

STA plans to have approximately 300 scientists in its R&D teams, consisting of 230+ process chemists and 70 analytical chemists, by the end of 2017 with a focus on antibody drug conjugates and high potent research projects. The Changzhou site has approximately 60 active pharmaceutical ingredients and/or intermediates under development and one new chemical entity in commercial production.

The Chinese Food and Drug Administration approved the site in October 2016 and a US Food and Drug Administration inspection is anticipated in the first half of 2017.

Source: WuXi AppTec’s STA Pharmaceutical

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