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Abbott To Announce Biotechnology Expansion In Barceloneta

Company Expects $200 Million Investment To Manufacture New Product


October 24, 2002
Copyright © 2002 CARIBBEAN BUSINESS. All Rights Reserved.

Next week Abbott Laboratories will announce the addition of a new biotechnology plant to its Barceloneta complex, industry sources told CARIBBEAN BUSINESS.

"This new facility is in line with Abbott’s plans to develop its biotechnology division, following the company’s purchase last year of BASF AG’s Bioresearch Corp.," said the source. "Abbott’s Barceloneta complex has enough land for several plants and serves the company’s plans to concentrate on biotechnology and high-technology manufacturing."

A new Abbott product in the biotechnology area has been awaiting final U.S. Food & Drug Administration approval since early 2002. To manufacture the product, a new plant would need to be built at a cost of $200 million (CB Feb. 27).

Abbott Puerto Rico’s biotechnology plant would probably answer to Abbott’s Bioresearch Center in Worcester, Mass. Previously known as BASF Bioresearch Corp., the center became part of Abbott last year when the company purchased its operations for $6.9 billion. A BASF plant in Jayuya produces Synthroid and is now part of Abbott.

In the past 10 years, Abbott’s Bioresearch Center has produced five drug candidates for clinical testing. One of the most promising is D2E7, a human monoclonal antibody against the cytokine, tumor necrosis factor. It is also being tested as a therapy for rheumatoid arthritis.

Abbott has close to 2,700 employees in Puerto Rico. Abbott Barceloneta contains a bulk manufacturing plant and a diagnostics finishing operation with 2,300 employees. Abbott Jayuya is the company’s newcomer; it has 180 employees with another 200 employed in Abbott’s sales & marketing operation in Carolina.

This Caribbean Business article appears courtesy of Casiano Communications.
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