Vetter Dedicates New Facility in Suburban Chicago

Developing drugs is a slow and expensive process, especially for hard-to-treat diseases such as cancer.

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With the dedication today of its new 24,000-square-foot facility at the Illinois Science + Technology Park in Skokie, Vetter may enable life-sciences firms to streamline their early development process and cut time to market.

Vetter, a contract manufacturer, produces high-quality, aseptically pre-filled injection systems including syringes, vials and injection pens and is mainly engaged in the field of fill and finishing of complex compounds indicated for conditions such as cancer, Parkinson's disease, and inflammatory and autoimmune disorders. Vetter also manufactures its customers´ high-end vaccines, including that for the H1N1 virus. Operational by the end of 2010, the Skokie facility will focus exclusively on pre-clinical through Phase IIb projects and will fill very small quantities of product, required for early studies. For Phase III the projects will be transferred to the company's German facilities for large-scale production.

Partnership

"For injectable drugs, collaboration early in development is essential," said Peter Soelkner, Vetter`s managing director. "What is the most user-friendly injection system for the patient? Should the compound be liquid or freeze-dried and reconstituted? What delivery system would best ensure multinational regulatory approval? Getting the answers right—the first time—speeds medications to market and to the patients that need them."

"We are very pleased to welcome Vetter to Chicago as we prepare to host the upcoming 2010 BIO International Convention," stated David Miller, president and CEO of the Illinois Biotechnology Industry Organization (iBIO). "It's an extraordinarily well-respected firm; Vetter adds real depth to our rapidly growing life sciences community."

Why Chicago?

The new state-of-the-art facility is strategic to Vetter's plan for worldwide growth. Founded 25 years ago in Ravensburg, Germany, Vetter employs 2,200 people. The Skokie site at 8025 Lamon Avenue, Vetter's first U.S. facility and its first outside Germany, will eventually employ 50 to 60 highly skilled professionals.

"Since nearly half of our customer base is located in North America, creating a U.S. facility was the logical next step," said Soelkner. "Although we did consider several other U.S. biotech hotspots, including Boston and San Francisco, Chicago best suited our needs."

The suburban Chicago facility is uniquely positioned. It is located in a thriving biopharmaceutical region with an established infrastructure and a talent pool of 70,000 to 80,000 professionals. It is near prominent research institutions. Centrally located within the United States, the site is within 20 minutes of O'Hare Airport, a domestic and international hub. And the difference in time zones enables convenient communication among Skokie and German facilities.
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