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GlaxoSmithKline, Vertex, North Carolina Research Campus, Rowan University Samuel H. Jones Innovation Center, Lonza Biologics, Indiana Economic Development Corp., Charles River Laboratories, Westchase Business Center, Sorrento Science Park, Monsanto, Great

GlaxoSmithKline Consolidates US Headquarters at NC’s Research Triangle Park
GlaxoSmithKline has consolidated its US operational headquarters at North Carolina’s research Triangle Park, stripping the designation from its Philadelphia facility where some 1,500 employees are based.
Company spokeswoman Mary Anne Ryhne told the Philadelphia Inquirer the consolidation was intended to eliminate confusion, and insisted that GSK remains "committed to the Philadelphia community and to Pennsylvania. We've supported communities where our employees live and work, and we'll continue to do that."
GSK has 4,500 employees in the Philadelphia region; the remaining 3,000 are based at facilities in Upper Merion, Pa., and Upper Providence, Pa.
At RTP, GSK told the Triangle Business Journal, it employs about 5,000 workers and owns 35 buildings — a factor in the NC campus’ favor since the pharma giant leases its Philadelphia-area properties.
The consolidation was announced last week as part of a restructuring of US operations announced by CEO Andrew Witty, who took office earlier this year. The restructuring will result in the pharma giant eliminating 1,800 US sales jobs. But because some jobs are already vacant, and some pharma sales reps will be shifted to vaccine sales positions, the net reduction will be closer to 1,000 jobs, resulting in a 7,500-person sales force, GSK told the Inquirer.
GSK has declined to say how many Philadelphia-area jobs will be lost in the restructuring.
Philadelphia has been a key site for GSK since the founder of a predecessor company, John K. Smith, opened a drug store in the City of Brotherly Love. While Philly was the US home of British-owned SmithKline Beecham, RTP was home to another predecessor, Glaxo Wellcome.
Witty was a Glaxo Wellcome veteran, while his predecessor, J.P. Garnier, worked his way up the ranks of SmithKline Beecham.

Financing Delay Forestalls Vertex Move to South Boston’s Fan Pier
Vertex Pharmaceuticals has delayed plans to relocate from Cambridge, Mass., to the Fan Pier development planned on the South Boston waterfront by developer Joseph Fallon, after his company has struggled to find financing to build out new space for the biotech giant, according to the Boston Business Journal.
Instead, Vertex is close to renewing leases it maintains for more than 300,000 square feet in Cambridge, according to the newspaper, which cited unnamed “industry sources.” Vertex occupies roughly 600,000 square feet in Cambridge under leases with owner BioMed Realty Trust [BRN, Aug. 11].
Vertex is still in talks for a move to Fan Pier, and would carry it out should Fallon arrange financing needed to move the project forward, the newspaper reported, citing “multiple real estate sources with knowledge of the negotiations.” That is because the company will need up to 1 million square feet of office and lab space in about five years, an anonymous source told the BBJ.
A thaw in the nearly-frozen capital markets was one factor needed for the company to move into Fan Pier; the other is approval for a new drug, according to the news report.
Vertex signed a letter of intent with Fallon to lease an initial 500,000 square feet of office space and was pursuing a deal to lease as much as 1 million square feet in two buildings [BRN, Aug. 4].
A Vertex spokesman contacted by the BBJ declined comment.

Report: Murdock Says NC Research Campus Will Expand, Despite Financial Upheaval
North Carolina research Campus developer David Murdock told the Charlotte Business Journal that his 350-acre life-sciences and business park in Kannapolis, NC, will proceed with a planned expansion — though a construction executive at Murdock’s development firm said financing has yet to be secured.
Tom Sanctis, vice president of commercial construction for campus developer Castle & Cooke North Carolina, told the newspaper negotiations with lenders were ongoing for financing the next phase of NCRC projects.
“The markets are just bad for the time being,” Sanctis said in the news report, adding: “The overall potential is so extraordinary that really a few months of financial turmoil in the marketplace is not going to have an impact on development.”
At issue is financing for a 160,000-square-foot office that would house operations of CMC-NorthEast and Pharmaceutical Product Development; a 46,000-square-foot greenhouse and related building for NC State University; and a building for Rowan-Cabarrus Community College.
Castle & Cooke has held off, however, building NCRC’s residential component — including town homes, apartments and high-end homes: “We’re just trying to make sure we’re smart,” Castle & Cook president Lynne Scott Safrit was quoted by the newspaper as saying.
And the city of Kannapolis is waiting for lower interest rates before it issues $168 million in bonds to finance its portion of the project, City Manager Mike Legg told the Business Journal.
Only about 25 of the 350 acres at the $1.5 billion biotech campus had been developed so far, Murdock told the newspaper. The billionaire food and real estate magnate has shelled out $400 million of his own money to date on the campus.

Rowan University Dedicates Samuel H. Jones Innovation Center, First Building Planned for Mantua, NJ, Tech Park
Rowan University last week dedicated its Samuel H. Jones Innovation Center, the 45,000-square-foot first building in what is planned as a 25-building, 1.5-million-square-foot campus called South Jersey Technology Park in Mantua Township, NJ.
The innovation center is located about a mile from Rowan's Glassboro campus, within the 200-acre SJTP, part of the proposed 580-acre Rowan University West Campus that would straddle Mantua, Glassboro, NJ, and Harrison, NJ.
SJTP is a public/private partnership that has received support from numerous organizations and individuals, including:
  • $5.8 million from the New Jersey Economic Development Authority;
  • $1.5 million from the New Jersey Commission on Science and Technology;
  • $1 million each from South Jersey businessman Samuel H. Jones and the Rowan University Foundation;
  • $500,000 from the US Small Business Administration; and
  • $150,000 from the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs.
“Our hope is the businesses that will one day populate this technology park will provide exceptional employment opportunities to enable us to build our economy. This grand opening marks the first big step to fulfilling that vision,” Rowan University president Donald Farish said in a statement.
The innovation center is a mixed-use facility that houses laboratories and laboratory/office space for research sponsored by private life-sci employers as well as by Rowan’s College of Engineering. The building is the home of the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, and the Rohrer College of Business Incubator, operated by the Rohrer College of Business at Rowan University.

Lonza completes $300M Expansion of Bioreactor at Portsmouth, NH, Tradeport; 350 New Jobs Planned
Lonza Biologics, a subsidiary of Swiss-owned Lonza Group, has completed a $300 million, 330,000-square-foot expansion of its bioreactor at Pease International Tradeport in Portsmouth, NH.
Company spokesman Melanie Disa told the Union Leader of Manchester, NH, that the expansion — the largest in the company's history – will increase Lonza’s bioreactor capacity to 93,000 liters, as well as add up to 30 new jobs to its current workforce of 650 people.
Disa told the newspaper some unused space at the Tradeport could be developed into a mid-scale plant, a vaccine facility or a large-scale mammalian plant. The manufacturer of life science-based custom antibodies continues to add employees, but acknowledged it has been slower to do so than planned — something it blamed in part on slower-than-expected growth in the biotech industry, the Union Leader reported.
Lonza came to Portsmouth in 1996 through its acquisition of Celltech Biologics, obtaining a 56,000-square-foot space at Pease International. It completed a 300,000-square-foot expansion with three added 20,000-liter bioreactors in 2004, and announced the recently completed expansion in 2006.

Indiana EDC Offers $1.5M+ in Incentives for Schwarz Pharma Manufacturing, Subsidiary Tied to $12M Expansion, 150 New Jobs
Schwarz Pharma Manufacturing and its generic-drug subsidiary Kremers Urban have announced plans for a $12 million expansion of their Seymour, Ind., manufacturing operations projected to create 150 new jobs for the drug makers by 2011 — a project for which the Indiana Economic Development Corp. has offered the companies more than $1.5 million in incentives.
Schwarz and Kremers will upgrade the manufacturing, information technology systems, and logistics equipment at their 280,000-square-foot pharmaceutical manufacturing and distribution center, located some 65 miles south of Indianapolis.

The drug makers employ 366 at their Indiana manufacturing facility. They plan to begin hiring managers, business associates and production staff later this month.

The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered Schwarz Pharma Manufacturing and Kremers Urban up to $1.25 million in performance-based tax credits and up to $310,000 in training grants based on the company's job creation plans. The city of Seymour will provide property tax abatement at the request of the Jackson County Industrial Development Corporation.


Charles River Laboratories Fetches a Reported $9M for Worcester, Mass., Office-Lab Building
The vacant five-story, 160,000-square-foot 55-57 Union St. in Worcester, Mass., has been sold by Charles River Laboratories for $9.1 million to a buyer that plans to renovate the office/lab building for life science tenants, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette reported.
The buyer, TDG Union Street LLC, will seek assistance from the city of Worcester and the state of Massachusetts to market the single-tenant building to multiple life-sci tenant prospects. Renovations will include the building's lobby, installation of a new café and tenant fit-ups.
The building — which has been renamed the Redstone Center — has more than 20,000 square feet of wet labs. Constructed in 1929, the building has been converted over the years to lab uses by past owners and tenants, including TSI, PerkinElmer and Charles River Laboratories.
Two senior vice presidents with the building’s exclusive leasing agent, Jones Lang LaSalle — Daniel Cordeau and Brendan Callahan — represented the seller and procured TDG, whose resident agent Brian Collins is listed on local records as resident agent for 55-57 Union.
Callahan told the reposition should draw companies seeking to escape historically high rents in Boston and neighboring Cambridge, Mass.

SpectraCell Doubles Size of Facility at Houston’s Westchase Business Center
SpectraCell Laboratories, a provider of advanced clinical testing services to healthcare providers,   has doubled the size of its facilities by adding a second 20,000-square-foot building on its campus in the Westchase Business District, the Houston Business Journal reported.
The new $3.5 million facility, completed in late October, houses SpectraCell’s clinical laboratory operations. An existing building, designed in 2005, retains the company’s corporate, financial, marketing and administrative functions.
SpectraCell has more than doubled its number of employees since 2005, and now serves more than 3,000 physician clients in 38 states.

Gene 24 Takes Full Building at San Diego’s Sorrento Science Park
Biotech research company Gene 24 has signed a lease to occupy the entire 10,571-square-foot office/wet lab building 4045 Sorrento Valley Blvd. in San Diego, one of three buildings within Sorrento Science Park, developed in 1973.

The three-year lease is valued at $982,000, which equates to about $2.58 per square foot per month, according to CoStar Group.

Dave Odmark and Brian Starck of Grubb & Ellis|BRE Commercial represented tenant Gene 24 and the science park’s landlord, Del Mar Partnership.


Monsanto Completes $3M Expansion of Jerseyville Ill., Site With New Office Building, Seed Processing Facility
Monsanto has completed a $3 million expansion project at its Jerseyville, Ill., location, consisting of roughly 22,000 square feet of new building or renovation that includes a new office building and a seed processing facility. The new facilities join the site’s existing 16 greenhouses, and nearly 300 acres of land for field trials.
Jerseyville is where Monsanto manages biotechnology field trials for projects in its research-and-development pipeline like dicamba-tolerant soybeans, water use efficiency cotton, nitrogen use efficiency corn, Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybeans, and drought tolerant corn. The site also processes seed for further field trials in other Midwestern states.
Next summer, Monsanto intends to plant at Jerseyville roughly 120,000 field plots, with about 90,000 of those to corn trials and the remainder to soybean trials.
Jerseyville conducted the world’s very first biotechnology field trial in 1987 – first with tomatoes and later that year with Roundup Ready soybeans.

Accelerator/Research Facility Planned for Owensboro, Ky.’s Carnegie Village
The city of Owensboro, Ky., and the Greater Owensboro Economic Development Corp. have announced plans for a new Centre for Business and Research in the Carnegie Village development.
The center will consist of a 37,000-square-foot accelerator and research site designed to accommodate early-stage life sciences companies and other tech startups, as well as cultivate high technology companies through the Emerging Ventures Center for Innovation. According to the city, the current growth of plant biotech companies associated with Kentucky BioProcessing has created a demand for biotech lab space.

The Daviess County Fiscal Court will assist the project by providing funding.
The center, at 9th and Allen streets, is part of an overall proposed urban village development called Carnegie Village, a project intended to help redevelop the city’s adjacent downtown.

Siemens Healthcare Unit Signs Lease for Full Floor at Cambridge (Mass.) Discovery Park
A division of Siemens Healthcare Diagnostics has signed a lease for the entire sixth floor in the Smithsonian Astrophysical Institute Observatory, within Cambridge (Mass.) Discovery Park. Oncogene Science Biomarker Group, a division of Siemens, will occupy the floor’s 22,442 square feet of office space, Mass High Tech reported.

Oncogene is a maker of ready-to-use cancer reagent systems for commercial and clinical research customers. Cambridge Discovery Park is a 27-acre campus that can accommodate an additional 700,000 square feet in office, laboratory, and research and development buildings certified as meeting Leadership in Energy Environmental Design standards.

Three CB Richard Ellis professionals — senior vice president and partner Curtis Cole, first vice president Chuck Kavoogian, and associate Adam Brinch — represented Siemens. Two Richards Barry Joyce & Partners professionals, partner Jonathan Varholak and assistant vice president Eric Smith, represented the landlord, the Bulfinch Companies.

BioEnergy International Expands at Woburn, Mass., Light Manufacturing Site
BioEnergy International, a developer of multi-product biorefineries that produce biofuels and bio-based specialty chemicals, has expanded to 17,760 square feet at 42 West Cummings Park in Woburn, Mass., a single-story, 142,000-square-foot light-manufacturing building, according to Mass High Tech.
Woburn-based Cummings Properties LLC, the building landlord, was represented in-house by leasing and property manager Derek Russell. BioEnergy was represented by three professionals from Boston-based Colliers Meredith and Grew, executive vice president James Elcock, assistant vice president David Goodhue and associate William Lynch.

NorthMarq Enters Facilities Management Accord with Minneapolis-based Techne

Techne, a Minneapolis-based specialty manufacturer of biological products, has entered into a five-year deal with NorthMarq Corp. Solutions for real estate services, project management and facilities management — including for an 800,000-square-foot, 11 building campus in northeast Minneapolis.

Techne is a holding company whose Research and Diagnostic Systems division employs 640 employees at the campus, operating the company's laboratory research, manufacturing, administration, sales and marketing departments.

The Scan

Researchers Compare WGS, Exome Sequencing-Based Mendelian Disease Diagnosis

Investigators find a diagnostic edge for whole-genome sequencing, while highlighting the cost advantages and improving diagnostic rate of exome sequencing in EJHG.

Researchers Retrace Key Mutations in Reassorted H1N1 Swine Flu Virus With Avian-Like Features

Mutations in the acidic polymerase-coding gene boost the pathogenicity and transmissibility of Eurasian avian-like H1N1 swine influenza viruses, a PNAS paper finds.

Genome Sequences Reveal Evolutionary History of South America's Canids

An analysis in PNAS of South American canid species' genomes offers a look at their evolutionary history, as well as their relationships and adaptations.

Lung Cancer Response to Checkpoint Inhibitors Reflected in Circulating Tumor DNA

In non-small cell lung cancer patients, researchers find in JCO Precision Oncology that survival benefits after immune checkpoint blockade coincide with a dip in ctDNA levels.