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Merck opens research center in Pudong

chinadaily.com.cn Updated:2018-11-22

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The newly-built research and development center of Merck in Pudong, Shanghai. [Photo/pdtimes.com.cn]

Merck, a German multinational pharmaceutical, chemical and life sciences company, recently announced the completion of its research and development (R&D) center in Pudong, Shanghai.

The new facility is aimed at helping local biotech and pharmaceutical companies accelerate their development and production of new medicines, which is an important move for the German company in their attempts to make further inroads in China.

The R&D center will grow into Merck's largest dedicated to developing customized cell-culture medium in the world, and it will undertake the company's global research projects and customized cell-culture medium development projects.

The local R&D center is capable of greatly reducing the time its clients have taken to develop new medicines, according to a spokesman from the company.

"Chinese biotech and pharmaceutical companies used to mail their customized cell-culture medium abroad for a test to be conducted by our centers, which usually takes months," Han Xiangzong, director of Merck's upstream technology R&D in China, said. "The new center in Pudong houses Chinese-speaking scientists and they can offer a high quality service to our Chinese clients to help them speed up their research."

According to Merck, the new facility will be expanded to 1,000 square meters with more than 20 scientists and engineers in 2019.

The German company is positive about the Chinese market and it has invested €250 million ($268 million) in China, according to Benoit Opsomer, vice-president of Merck's life science business.

In 2016, it announced its intention to establish a life science center in Nantong, Jiangsu province and built its first end-to-end biological process development center in the Asia-Pacific region in Shanghai the following year. In September, Merck erected a production base of disposable technology products in Wuxi, Jiangsu province.

"China is going to be a very important market in healthcare," Christian Martin, global marketing manager of Merck's upstream biotechnology, said. "That explains why we have increased our investment in China and we believe we can offer more better medicines for Chinese patients."

Founded in 1668, Merck is the world's oldest operating chemical and pharmaceutical company as well as one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world, and it has major research and development centers in Darmstadt, Boston, Tokyo and Beijing.

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