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Novo Nordisk invests $100m in research in China

Expands existing site in Beijing

Novo Nordisk is to boost its research efforts in China by investing $100m to expand its existing facilities in Beijing.

The new centre will see the Danish pharma company add 70 more employees to its current staff of 130 in the city, with the potential for further expansion.

Research at the site will focus on the use of proteins to treat diabetes and other chronic diseases, and follows on from current research being done in Beijing.

It is expected the expanded facility will allow stronger contributions from Novo's research team in China across the company's global research efforts, with different facilities encouraged to share best brpractice and ensure an efficient pipeline.

“We see the investment in this new R&D facility as a win-win opportunity for both Novo Nordisk and China,” said Mads Krogsgaard Thomsen, Novo's chief science officer and executive vice president.

Novo should know the country's research capabilities well, having first set up an R&D centre in 1997. It then established its current facility at the Zhongguancun Life Science Park in Beijing in 2002.

Plans to double research efforts at this site were previously announced in 2010, with Krogsgaard Thomsen saying at the time they demonstrated a “long term commitment to take part in the scientific and technological development of China.”

This now seems to be coming to fruition, and Novo has joined the likes of Lilly, Bayer and BMS in taking a practical step to expand research in a country that is becoming the strongest of the emerging markets.

In addition, J&J announced last week it would be launching four new innovation centres, one of which will be based in China, alongside two in the US and one in the UK.

Novo still has its eye on the traditionally strong research regions, however, and early this year, it launched a research centre in Seattle, US, focusing on research into type 1 diabetes.

25th September 2012

From: Research

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