16 Jul 2012, BioSpectrum Bureau , BioSpectrum
Singapore: Japan's Chugai Pharmabody Research (CPR) has started its operations in Singapore. The company started operations in Singapore on July 2, 2012. The opening ceremony was attended by Singapore's Minister for Trade & Industry Mr Lim Hng Kiang.
CPR is a research company that is fully-owned by Chugai Pharmaceutical, one of Japan's leading research-based pharmaceutical companies and a world leader in biotechnology.
"I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to the Government of Singapore, the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the Economic Development Board, and the Agency for Science, Technology and Research for their invaluable support of Chugai over the past 10 years," said Mr Osamu Nagayama, Chairman & CEO of Chugai Pharmaceutical.
"Our first research centre here, PharmaLogicals Research, was established in 2002 as a joint-venture and is making major progress in research that contributes to drug discovery. The opening of CPR represents our company's fourth satellite research institute, following others in Japan, South Korea, and Singapore," he added.
"Chugai is proud to be among one of the leading science-oriented companies that have decided to further strengthen our presence in Singapore. We are honoured to welcome Sir David Lane as the Chairman of the Board of CPR," said Mr. Nagayama. Sir David is the Chief Scientist of A*STAR.
Mr Nagayama also said that the decision to set up CPR here was due to Singapore's excellent position as an important hub for biomedical science, its scientific infrastructure and highly-skilled multinational talent.
Innovative technologies and investment
CPR will utilise Chugai's state-of-the-art, proprietary antibody engineering technologies to generate new antibody candidates with the potential of making significant improvements in therapeutic effects in numerous diseases which were previously considered impossible with conventional antibodies.
"Our new technologies, called recycling and sweeping antibody technologies, are extremely important achievements in our more than 20-year history of activities in biopharmaceutical research," said Mr. Nagayama.
CPR was established with an initial investment of S$1.5 million and Chugai is also looking to invest approximately S$200 million in Singapore on antibody research over the next five years.
"We are immensely excited by the potential for CPR to create innovative antibody drugs with dramatic improvements in therapeutic effects that could have a wide-ranging impact on the improvement of healthcare around the world. My sincere wish is for government agencies and the industry to cooperate continuously to promote economic growth and healthcare for the well-being of all," he said.