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Pfizer, Charles River Labs, TDG Union Street, Olathe Innovation Campus, Kraft Group, AIDS Vaccine Design and Development Laboratory, Galveston National Laboratory, Utah’s Governor’s Office of Economic Development, Regeneron, Sanofi-Aventis, and More

Pfizer Puts Terre Haute, Indiana, Manufacturing Plant on the Block
Pfizer’s manufacturing facility in Terre Haute, Ind., went up for sale for reuse or redevelopment last Monday, the Tribune-Star of Terre Haute, Ind., reported last week.
The facility at one time employed around 800 workers, and still houses 140 employees who will continue to produce two antibiotics through the first half of 2009, a Pfizer spokesman told the paper.
The 935-acre property is being marketed by the real estate brokerage firm CB Richard Ellis, from its Indianapolis office.
The site includes 23 manufacturing and warehouse facilities totaling around 580,000 square feet and about 762 acres of vacant land.
The plant site has undergone $300 million in upgrades since 1999. Pfizer has had a manufacturing facility on the site since 1948.
Steve Witt, president of the Terre Haute Economic Development Corp., told the Tribune-Star that Pfizer has identified more than 1,000 life science, pharmaceutical, or biotechnology companies who may be interested in the site.
Further information on the site is available here.

TDG Union Street Buys Charles River Site in Worcester, Mass.
Jones Lang LaSalle said last week that it has sold Charles River Laboratories’ five-story, 160,000-square-foot office and laboratory building at 55-57 Union Street in Worcester, Mass., to TDG Union Street. 
TDG plans to “reposition the asset” to attract life science tenants, Jones Lang LaSalle said in a statement.
Improvements planned for the property include renovation of the building's lobby, installation of a new café, and various tenant fit ups.
TDG has retained Jones Lang LaSalle as the exclusive leasing agent for the site, which it will market under the name Redstone Center as “a low-cost alternative for life science, biotech, and office users in the market.”
Located in downtown Worcester, the building is located near Worcester Polytechnic Institute, the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy, and UMASS Medical Center.

K-State Plans to Break Ground on Olathe Innovation Campus in 2009 or 2010
Kansas State University is moving ahead with plans for its Olathe Innovation Campus in the wake of a local vote in favor of the Johnson County Education Research Triangle, which increased sales tax in the county to one-eighth of a cent.
The Kansas City InfoZine reported last week that Kansas State plans to break ground in late 2009 or early 2010 for the first building on the campus, which will include around 103,000 square feet of educational space.
Construction of the benefit district — the infrastructure for the park... roads, utilities, etc. — is under way and should be completed by September 2009," Daniel Richardson, chief executive officer of the new campus, told the paper.
The increase in sales tax is expected to generate about $15 million a year to support the KU-Edwards Campus, the KU Medical School, and the K-State Olathe Innovation Campus. Each campus will receive $5 million in the base in perpetuity [BRN, 10-20-08].
"The economic impact of the park has been projected to include $150 million in public and private investment and 3,000 new jobs," Richardson told the Kansas City InfoZine.
The Olathe Innovation Campus will include space for biotechnology incubators and space for start-up and established biotech industries. The city of Olathe will offer tax abatements to incoming bioscience businesses.

Kraft Group Planning Biotech Park for Foxboro, Mass.
The Kraft Group is planning to build a 1.6 million-square-foot biotech office park in Foxboro, Mass., the Sun Chronicle of Attleboro, Mass., reported last week.
Kraft is "in the process of marketing for a tenant for this biotech office campus," Building Commissioner William Casbarra told the paper, adding that the timing of the project would depend on how soon a major tenant is found.
Foxboro has deemed the site an “Economic Overlay District,” which may help it qualify for a piece of a $55 million state grant fund.
Officials said the town would use the money for project-related infrastructure under the state program.

AIDS Vaccine Lab Opens at Brooklyn Army Terminal
The International AIDS Vaccine Initiative last week hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new AIDS Vaccine Design and Development Laboratory — a 36,000 square foot facility and the first occupant within a planned new bioscience center at the Brooklyn Army Terminal.
The lab “is the only facility in the world to be dedicated exclusively to the design and development of an AIDS vaccine,” IAVI said in a statement.
"New York City — already home to many of the world's finest healthcare and research institutions — is getting a major boost as a global center of science and innovation with the opening of the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative's state-of-the-art Design Lab," New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in a statement.
"We have taken a wide range of steps to promote new industries and diversify our economy, and the New York City Bioscience Initiative and our efforts to grow that sector are among the most important,” Bloomberg added.
The New York City Economic Development Corporation provided $12 million for the construction of IAVI's space at the Brooklyn Army Terminal, and IAVI raised an additional $5 million in funds through federal tax programs to cover the costs of renovating the new facility.

UTMB Opens New Biodefense Lab
The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston last week held formal dedication ceremonies to mark the completion of the Galveston National Laboratory, a $174 million biodefense lab.
While much of Galveston was devastated by Hurricane Ike in September, the GNL “emerged unscathed from the storm due to its multiple redundant safety and engineering features,” UTMB said in a statement.
The 186,267-square-foot Biosafety Level 4 lab will employ around 300 people when it is fully staffed. Researchers at the lab will study a range of pathogens of interest to biodefense, including organisms that cause anthrax, avian flu, bubonic plague, typhus, West Nile virus, influenza, drug-resistant tuberculosis, and hemorrhagic fevers such as Ebola.
Officials expect the lab to contribute around $1.4 billion to the state’s economy over the next 20 years.

Pfizer Launches Global Stem Cell Research Unit; Will Invest $60M in UK Facility
Pfizer last week launched a new research unit called Pfizer Regenerative Medicine, which will focus on using stem cells as therapeutics.
Pfizer Regenerative Medicine will be co-located in Cambridge, UK, and Cambridge, Mass., and it is expected to expand to employ around 70 researchers.
The Cambridge, UK, site is based at Granta Park and will focus on neural and sensory disorders, while the Cambridge, Mass., site is based at Pfizer’s Research Technology Center and will focus on endocrine and cardiac research.
The UK’s Financial Times reported last week that the company plans to spend up to $60 million on the Cambridge, UK, center.

Utah Offers Medical Testing Lab $2M in Tax Credits for Expansion
Utah’s Governor’s Office of Economic Development has offered a tax incentive of $1,996,600 to medical testing firm Nelson Laboratories to support a $13 million expansion for the company’s Salt Lake City facilities.
The project is expected to generate more than 350 new full-time positions at an average of 125 percent of the Salt Lake County average wage, the GOED said in a statement.
Over the ten-year project, these new positions will generate wages in excess of $157 million and new state tax revenue of more than $9.9 million, GOED said.
The GOED said that it worked with the Utah Technology Council, the Biotechnology Industry Organization, and EDCUtah to put together “a competitive incentive offer.”

Regeneron Signs NJ Sublease with Sanofi-Aventis
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals of Tarrytown, NY, said last week that it has entered into a sublease with Sanofi-Aventis for 14,000 square feet of office space in the Somerset Corporate Center in Bridgewater, NJ.
Regeneron said that it will initially employ 35 people at the New Jersey site. These employees will primarily work on the company’s clinical drug development programs and are expected to begin working at the new offices in January 2009.  
“By establishing an office in New Jersey, one of the premier locations for life sciences companies, we are able to offer New Jersey residents with experience in pharmaceutical development the opportunity to join our talented and growing clinical development team,” Ross Grossman, vice president of human resources at Regeneron, said in a statement.   

Abilene, Texas, Officials Approve $5.3M Biomedical Research Center
The Development Corporation of Abilene last week approved $5.3 million for a new biomedical research center, according to local news reports.
The 20,000-square-foot facility is expected to house six to eight biotech companies and bring 140 to 190 jobs to Abilene with an average yearly salary of $70,000.
Richard Burdine, DCOA’s chief executive officer, said that these workers will likely come primarily from outside Abilene, but added that he’d also like to see local workers benefit.
"It may be work they do during the summer or subcontract work. We want to see that involvement of the community grow in the whole biotech sector," he said.
The DCOA already allocated $335,000 for the building's completed architectural design and spent more than $325,000 to purchase and demolish the property, readying the lots for construction.

North East UK Economic Development Agency Opens Proteomics Center
The Centre of Excellence for Life Sciences, or CELS, an economic development effort in North East England, last week opened a new proteomics facility in Newcastle, UK.
The North East Proteome Analysis Facility, or NEPAF, will work with “a wide range of R&D groups and healthcare companies in the private and public sector in the UK and internationally and will provide then with access to leading expertise and equipment for the study of proteins,” CELS said in a statement.
In addition to CELS, which raised £4 million ($6 million) in 2007 to develop the facility, the regional development agency One North East and the European Regional Development Fund also supported NEPAF.

The Scan

Study Reveals New Details About Genetics of Major Cause of Female Infertility

Researchers in Nature Medicine conducted a whole-exome sequencing study of mote than a thousand patients with premature ovarian insufficiency.

Circulating Tumor DNA Shows Potential as Biomarker in Rare Childhood Cancer

A study in the Journal of Clinical Oncology has found that circulating tumor DNA levels in rhabdomyosarcoma may serve as a biomarker for prognosis.

Study Recommends Cancer Screening for Dogs Beginning Age Seven, Depending on Breed

PetDx researchers report in PLOS One that annual cancer screening for dogs should begin by age seven.

White-Tailed Deer Harbor SARS-CoV-2 Variants No Longer Infecting Humans, Study Finds

A new study in PNAS has found that white-tailed deer could act as a reservoir of SARS-CoV-2 variants no longer found among humans.