Roche upgrades pharmaceutical research center in Shanghai
Roche CEO Severin Schwan (R) attends the inauguration ceremony of the Roche Innovation Center in the Zhangjiang Hi-Tech Park on Oct 21. [Photo/WeChat account: zjpark]
Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche inaugurated the Roche Innovation Center, an upgraded version of its original pharmaceutical research center, in Shanghai on Oct 21.
The new innovation center received 863 million yuan ($122 million) in investment and covers an area of 26,000 square meters in the Zhangjiang Hi-Tech Park. It is equipped with world-class research facilities.
The center will focus on developing innovative drugs related to hepatitis B, immunity, inflammation, and infection.
As an innovation-driven enterprise, Roche has been investing about a fifth of its annual income into R&D. About 150 researchers at the innovation center, 90 percent of which are Chinese scientists, will be engaged in drug discovery and clinical trials.
Roche CEO Severin Schwan said Roche is glad to be a part of China's healthcare industry and greatly values the Chinese market.
"Roche is striving to make Shanghai the third most important city in its development strategy following Switzerland's Basel and the United States' San Francisco and will invest heavily in new drug R&D at the innovation center to meet the market needs," said Schwan.
A line of anti-hepatitis B drugs has been developed at the innovation center as many Chinese people have died from the illness.
Zhou Hong, president of Roche China, said that "Drugs developed by Roche in China have benefited many Chinese patients. We will cooperate with other research institutes to bring the drugs to the world."
To provide a satisfying office environment for researchers, the innovation center features a modern layout, an advanced laboratory, and a leisure area.
Dr. Bryn Roberts, senior vice president for pharmaceutical research at Roche, said the design of the innovation center and supporting facilities create a multifunctional space for scientists to collaborate and carry out research.
The Roche Innovation Center has a leisure area for researchers. [Photo/WeChat account: zjpark]