The New Jersey Continuous Manufacturing Institute, a joint venture between the New Jersey Innovation Institute and Rutgers University, is looking to change the face of pharmaceutical manufacturing in the state.
While NJCMI has been operating for the past year, it has announced its intention to officially form under the NJCMI banner and will eventually seek a 40,000-square-foot space in the state. It will also look to train and employ up to 150 state workers.
“We’re looking at three different locations in industrial parks that cater to the pharmaceutical industry,” Dr. Donald Sebastian, NJII’s president, said in an interview with NJBIZ. “We need about 40,000 square feet but will do that in stages starting at about 10,000-square-feet units either close by or under one roof.”
He declined to name the three sites.
The institute has been quietly operating on both Rutgers University’s campus and the NJ Innovation Institute, and is hoping for an additional $10 million from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s next year to set up the new facility, Sebastian said. In 2015, the FDA gave a $4.9 million grant to the joint venture for its work in continuous manufacturing.
NJCMI’s goal is to research and create continuous manufacturing techniques to produce drugs, as opposed to manufacturing them through batch processing. In batch processing, a drug is typically produced stage by stage over a series of different departments in a pharmaceutical company. Such a process often results in delays in developing a drug, and limited supplies of the drug being produced.
The FDA last year publicly encouraged pharmaceutical companies to adopt continuous manufacturing techniques – systems that would allow the development of a drug to be produced in a seamless and uninterrupted way, thus producing larger quantities of a drug more quickly.