Japan's Chugai Pharmaceutical is investing more than $150 million over 5 years to investigate antibodies at a new research facility in Singapore. Late last week company officials officially cut the ribbon at the new lab, which will hire about 60 scientists for the R&D effort.
Chugai plans to use its own antibody engineering technology to do the work in Singapore's Biopolis R&D hub, a heavily subsidized complex which has represented the city-state's ambitious effort to grow a new biotech industry. A*STAR Chief Scientist David Lane will be chairman of the new venture. This is Chugai's fourth research center in Asia.
Antibodies have proven to be a rich field for drug developers in recent years. Research at Deloitte Recap has underscored that experimental antibodies have a higher average rate of success than most drug fields. And developers have been following up with a second generation of new therapeutics that promises to do better, often targeting diseases along multiple pathways.