Advanced BioScience Laboratories Celebrates Opening New Research and Manufacturing Facility with Biotech and Community Partners
Rockville, MD (June 6, 2011) - Advanced BioScience Laboratories, Inc., (ABL) held an Open House June 3 to celebrate the strategic expansion of its vaccine and biotherapeutic product development capabilities at the new headquarters located at 9800 Medical Center Drive, Building D in the Shady Grove Life Sciences Center in Rockville, Maryland. Prestigious speakers included Alain Mérieux, Chairman of Institut Mérieux; Johannes Burlin, Chairman ABL; Dr. Robert Gallo, Director of the Institute of Human Virology (IHV); Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett; Dr. Thomas VanCott, President and CEO of ABL; and public officials and members of the local biotech and business community. The Open House included tours of ABL's new manufacturing suites and research laboratories.
"ABL has expanded to meet increasing demand for high quality product development and manufacturing services in the local and international biopharmaceutical communities," said Dr. VanCott. "We will continue to work closely with our clients to accelerate the advance of discoveries to clinical testing by leveraging 50 years of scientific expertise combined with the benefits of this new facility."
For 50 years, ABL has served as a contract research and manufacturing organization (CRO/CMO) focused on partnering with clients to meet their preclinical product development goals. Today, it has some 100 employees and plans to add another 30 within the next 12-18 months. The company has invested more than $12 million in build-out of its new facility, which will serve as headquarters for ABL's administration, laboratory services, and cGMP manufacturing and provides room for future expansion.
Dr. Gallo, a featured speaker at the ceremony, is a co-discoverer of HIV-1, and his team, in partnership with ABL scientists, characterized HIV as the cause of AIDS. These and many other leading scientific discoveries made Dr. Gallo the most referenced scientist in the world in the 1980s and 1990s, and during this time he utilized ABL's research laboratories to support several of these groundbreaking discoveries.
"ABL plays an essential role as a catalyst, accelerator and transformer of innovation and the world of healthcare today has a genuine need for small, flexible and responsive expert structures capable of boosting innovation by enabling concepts to progress from upstream research into products that are accessible to clinicians and their patients," said Mr. Mérieux. "These structures are essential links in the biopharmaceutical chain. ABL has many cards in its hand: long experience, recognized expertise in virology, and determined men and women. The new premises that we are inaugurating today, give the company new resources to step up its action and fulfill its missions."
Institut Mérieux consists of bioindustrial and innovative companies, including ABL. Institut Mérieux employs over 10,000 people, with locations in more than 35 countries, and generates sales of over €1.4 billion. Alain Mérieux charges the companies in the Institut Mérieux to improve medicine and public health on a global scale.
ABL worked with Scheer Partners to negotiate a 15-year lease of its new, expanded corporate headquarters. It is one of the largest leases signed by a biotech company within Montgomery County in recent years. Scheer also provided the company with site analysis, strategic planning, financing, construction and project management. Of ABL's investment in Montgomery County, Mr. Leggett said, "ABL's focus in the areas of vaccines and protein therapeutics over the past five decades has spawned new technologies and patents for the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases. "We are obviously thrilled to have such a dynamic, leading life sciences company choose to invest, grow and continue this important work here in Montgomery County and I wish them many more years of continued success."