Top contenders for manufacturing accolade revealed

By Gregory Roumeliotis

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Pfizer Vice president

AstraZeneca, Baxter BioPharma Solutions, Daiichi Asubio Pharma,
Janssen Pharmaceutica and Wyeth Pharmaceuticals are the finalists
competing for this year's Facility of the Year Award, which
recognizes innovation and cost effectiveness utilised by
manufacturing facilities serving the regulated health care

All participants in the competition had to show their manufacturing projects demonstrated cutting edge engineering and innovative new technology or advanced applications of existing technology.

The winner will be announced on 22 March 2006 at the INTERPHEX​ Conference and Exhibition at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City.

AstraZeneca​'s facility in Macclesfield, UK, was chosen for its Large Scale Laboratory (LSL) Project, a multi-purpose time- and cost-efficient production unit which manufactures primary pharmaceutical products for use in clinical trials.

Baxter BioPharma Solutions​' facility was selected for its Phase IV Vial and Syringe Filling project that offers fast and economic large-scale syringe filling, aseptic formulation, vial filling, lyophilisation, terminal sterilisation, and flexible formulation capacity for a variety of challenging products such as insoluble solutions and vaccines.

Daiichi Asubio Pharmaceuticals​ made the grade with its NBP (New Bio Plant) project, a multi-product and multi-scale "Launch Plant" for bio bulk products adopting unique processes, making it a first in Japan.

Janssen Pharmaceutica​ was shortlisted for its Small Volume Area in Geel, a state-of-the-art facility for handling highly potent powders which supplies about two-thirds of the worldwide chemical production in the pharmaceutical sector of Johnson & Johnson.

Wyeth Pharmaceuticals​ was picked for its Wyeth BioPharma Campus at Grange Castle project, the largest fully integrated facility ever built in single phase, capable of manufacturing bulk drug substance and fill-finishing biologics, vaccines, and antibiotics on one site.

Scott Ludlum, director of business initiatives at the International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering (ISPE)​ which sponsors the award, told​: "The awards program is unique because it provides a platform for the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry to showcase its new products and accomplishments in facility design, construction, and operation, while sharing the development of new applications of technology and cutting edge approaches that are being adopted by the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry."

Apart from meeting essential standards in personal safety, hazard control, environmental impact and access for people with disabilities, hopefuls had to exhibit excellence in several key areas.

These include project uniqueness and innovation, significant contributions to the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry and excellence in execution.

The judging panel is presided by Peter Bigelow, senior vice president of the Wyeth Consumer Healthcare Operating Unit, and consists of Tony Felicia, vice president, R&D & Clinical Administration at AstraZeneca, Christian Ilsoe, vice president, Quality & Validation Assurance at NNE A/S, Brian Lange, director of Sterile & Packaging Operations Engineering for Merck & Co., Ulrich Rudow, vice president, Worldwide Engineering at Johnson & Johnson, Raymond Scherzer, senior vice president of Engineering, Technology and Capital Management in Global Manufacturing & Supply at GlaxoSmithKline, Andrew Signore, co-founder and president of Integrated Project Services (IPS) and Andy Skibo, vice president, corporate engineering and capital projects at Amgen.

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