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California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, Wyeth, Organogenesis, New York City Industrial Development Agency, Leon County (Fla.) Board of Commissioners, Tallahassee Economic Development Council, Concert Pharmaceuticals, Baltimore County Department of

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California Stem Cell Institute Authorizes Legal Action in Expense Dispute
 
The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine's governing board has voted to authorize legal action against the owner of its headquarters building, Stockbridge Capital Partners.
 
The dispute, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, centers on about $425,000 in annual operating costs for items as diverse as electricity, janitors, parking privileges, and fees similar to those paid by condominium owners.
 
A Stockbridge spokesman, Adam Alberti, told the newspaper his firm has covered about $1 million of operating expenses that were supposed to have been paid by private fundraisers and others, adding: “We are working with the city and other folks involved to find ways to cover this.”
 
Stem cell board Chairman Robert Klein told the Chronicle CIRM met with Stockbridge two months earlier and was assured by the building owner that it would pay all expenses: “They have not lived up to the representations made to the mayor or ourselves.”
 
Newsom, who persuaded CIRM to locate in his city rather than San Diego or Sacramento, has sought to broker an agreement between both sides:  "The mayor remains 100 percent committed to resolving this dispute between the parties. We're confident it can be resolved without litigation,” Newsom spokesman Nathan Ballard said.
 
Adam Alberti, spokesman for Stockbridge, said Wednesday that the company remains committed to keeping the institute headquarters in San Francisco. "We are in year two of a 10-year rent-free deal," he said. "We will continue to meet that obligation."
 
Alberti said that so far the firm also has covered about $1 million of operating expenses — costs that were to be covered by "private fundraisers and other parties" who have yet to come through with the money. "We are working with the city and other folks involved to find ways to cover this," he said.
 

 
Wyeth Constructing $280M Manufacturing Facility in China’s Jiangsu Province
Wyeth has begun construction of a $280 million, 1.3 million-square-foot manufacturing facility at Suzhou Industrial Park in China's Jiangsu Province. The facility will be one of the largest nutritional manufacturing plants in the world, and will focus on the production of infant formula milk powder and other nutritional products.
 
Construction at the site started this month, and is set to be completed in 2010. At full operation, the plant is expected to employ about 500 employees, and supply its products primarily to the local Chinese market.
 

 
Organogenesis Expands Into Second Canton, Mass., Building Near Its Headquarters
 
Organogenesis will expand into all of the 99,869-square-foot 275 Dan Road in Canton, Mass., following the building’s sale to Rugby Realty Company of New Rochelle, NY, for $5.1 million. Rugby has acquired the building from seller CWCapital Asset Management LLC.
 
Organogenesis, which specializes in regenerative medicine, has its headquarters nearby at 150 Dan Road.
 
Richards Barry Joyce & Partners, the Boston real estate firm that announced the sale last week, represented CWCapital through partner Michael Frisoli and executive vice president Richard Herlihy. Sean Teague of DTZ FHO Partners represented the buyer.
 

 
NYC Industrial Development Agency OKs $4.5M for Expansion of Biodiesel Fuel Maker 
 
The New York City Industrial Development Agency board has approved more than $4.5 million in tax exemptions for Tri-State Biodiesel. The maker of biodiesel fuel from recycled cooking oil was approved for about $4.4 million in triple-tax-exempt manufacturing facilities bonds, as well as an exemption from city and state mortgage recording taxes valued at about $123,200, as well as city and state sales tax exemptions valued at approximately $155,492.
 
In return for the incentives, Tri-State Biodiesel promised to create 23 jobs, and retain 17 others, by constructing and equipping a 17,250 square foot facility in Brooklyn. The company will also build a tank farm for the warehousing and distribution of the fuel created from the recycled cooking oil. The project will raise the company’s annual production capacity to 3 million gallons.
 

 
Leon County, Fla., Commissioners to Weigh EDC’s Recruitment of Biotech to Tallahassee
 
Leon County, Fla., county commissioners next month are considering what support, if any, to give the Tallahassee Economic Development Council in its effort to attract a California biotech company and its 20 jobs to the state capital.
 
Six of seven county commissioners voiced support for joining the city of Tallahassee and the Tallahassee Economic Development Council in offering matching subsidies toward the job attraction effort, with further discussion scheduled for the commission’s next meeting April 8. The seventh, Bob Rackleff, questioned where the county would find money for Cypress Systems.
 
Cypress Systems told the Tallahassee Democrat it is considering Tallahassee, an undisclosed Michigan site, and several other sites for a new $1.8 million, 10,000-square-foot facility to produce high-selenium yeast for potential cancer-fighting properties. The company plans to carry out research as well as collaboration projects with local universities in a new Excell Biotechnology Research Center facility that would employ 20 people.
 
Cypress Systems told the Democrat its decision won’t be skewed by the fact it has a relationship with the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory at Innovation Park.
 
"This company is attracted to the community because of the Mag Lab, the [Florida State University] Food and Nutrition Department and the [Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University] agricultural program," Beth Kirkland, the EDC’s executive director, told the Democrat. "There are opportunities for them to have synergies in the development of the product."
 
Cypress expects to choose a location in the coming months.
 

 
Concert Pharmaceuticals Reportedly Inks Expansion Lease at Lexington, Mass., Building
 
Concert Pharmaceuticals has completed a seven-year expansion and renewal lease deal that will increase its space to 40,000 square feet at One Ledgemont Center in Lexington, Mass., according to GlobeSt.com, which quoted an unnamed source as saying: “That’s a done deal.”
 
Concert’s new lease would be the latest signed by a life sciences company for space in the Boston suburbs. The largest had Shire Pharmaceuticals proceeding with a long-discussed $394 million expansion of operations by renovations and new construction totaling a half-million square feet at the Lexington Technology Park [BioRegion News, Feb. 19].
 
Also taking suburban space have been Altus Pharmaceuticals, which signed for 85,000 square feet at 610 Lincoln St. in Waltham, Mass.; ImmunoGen, which will occupy 88,000 square feet at 830 Winter St. in Waltham; and Microbia, which took 40,000 square feet at 60 Westview St. in Lexington. Nearly 750,000 square feet of laboratory space has been leased or is about to be along the Route 128 corridor since last summer, according to the Biotech REview report recently released by Colliers Meredith and Grew [BioRegion News, March 10].
 

 
Pharmaceutics International Inc. Adding Manufacturing Space in Hunt Valley
 
The Baltimore County Department of Economic Development has awarded a $500,000 loan through the county’s Advanced Technology Loan Fund to Pharmaceutics International toward the expansion of its new Hunt Valley, Md., facility.
 
The loan, announced by the county last week, will allow Pharmceutics International to add 88,000 square feet of manufacturing and administrative space at its facility at 103 Beaver Court, after spending $16 million to buy, renovate and equip the building,
 
The company now employs a total 325 people between its new facility and its current headquarters, also in Hunt Valley at 10819 Gilroy Road; another 50 new workers are projected to be added this year.
 
Founded in 1994 by Syed Abidi, the company helps drug companies develop new treatments for manufacturing.
 

 
Biopharma Company Plans HQ Move to North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park
 
Argolyn Bioscience said last week it would relocate its headquarters from Charleston, SC, to North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park following the expansion of its management team, with Nixon (Nick) Ellis joining the company as president and CEO, and George (Barney) Koszalka, chief development officer.
 
Argolyn said it would keep in Charleston its existing research and development activities, which will remain the home base of the company’s founder and chief scientific officer, Tom Dix.

Argolyn is a developer of drugs to treat pain, psychosis, and other disorders. The company last year raised $15.8 million in venture capital.

The Scan

US Booster Eligibility Decision

The US CDC director recommends that people at high risk of developing COVID-19 due to their jobs also be eligible for COVID-19 boosters, in addition to those 65 years old and older or with underlying medical conditions.

Arizona Bill Before Judge

The Arizona Daily Star reports that a judge is weighing whether a new Arizona law restricting abortion due to genetic conditions is a ban or a restriction.

Additional Genes

Wales is rolling out new genetic testing service for cancer patients, according to BBC News.

Science Papers Examine State of Human Genomic Research, Single-Cell Protein Quantification

In Science this week: a number of editorials and policy reports discuss advances in human genomic research, and more.