The ax drops on hundreds at Human Genome Sciences in wake of GSK buyout

The new masters of Human Genome Sciences are continuing to chop away employees. Just weeks after letting state officials in Maryland know that it was laying off 114 workers, or roughly 10% of its workforce, the word now is that 97 more will follow with a third round of cuts coming ahead of Christmas and more slated for 2013.

The loss of hundreds of jobs at the Rockville, MD-based company can come as no great surprise in the wake of GlaxoSmithKline's $3 billion buyout. HGS had struggled mightily to avoid a bargain basement sale of the company to the pharma giant. But with no White Knight appearing at the gates, longtime partner GSK ($GSK) was free to step in and absorb the biotech, integrating operations after a disappointing launch of its new drug Benlysta. At the time Benlysta was approved, HGS had dreamed of creating a full-scale company with R&D and marketing operations in-house.

A GSK spokesman acknowledged the integration to the Baltimore Business Journal, which has been tracking the downsizing now under way. The BBJ reports that the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation has been notified that the ax will start to fall on Dec. 15, but it looks like this is an ongoing process that won't end until GSK has completed digesting this biotech course.

- here's the story from the Baltimore Business Journal

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