Fujifilm has announced that it is doubling the size of its vaccine manufacturing facility in the UK. The company is planning to spend £400 million on expanding its Teesside plant, where it manufactures the active ingredient for the Novavax COVID-19 vaccine.

Martin Meeson, CEO, Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies, commented: “We all know that there has never been a more important time to invest in biopharmaceuticals — and £400 million, the largest investment in British biopharmaceutical manufacturing for decades, signals Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies’ intent to be able to offer multi-modal options to respond to our customers’ needs with flexibility and agility to help solve public health demands, and deliver the medicines and vaccines of tomorrow.”

The expansion, which is set to be ready in 2023 or early 2024, includes facilities that specialise in antibody treatments and viral gene therapies and will create up to 350 highly skilled jobs in contract manufacturing.

Meeson continued: “With a strong growing demand for microbial, cell culture and viral gene therapy services, we are adding the capacity and latest technologies within one campus to offer a range of modalities to build an offering that will deliver novel promising treatments to patients for years to come.”

Novavax’s vaccine has not yet been approved in the UK, but it has partnered with Serum Institute of India, a vaccine manufacturer in India and together they have filed for emergency use authorisation for its vaccine in India, Indonesia and the Philippines.

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