Taiwanese research unit, Merck team up on new drug development

03/26/2018 09:39 PM
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Photo courtesy of ITRI
Photo courtesy of ITRI

Taipei, March 26 (CNA) Taiwan's Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with German pharmaceutical and life science giant Merck on Monday on cooperation to develop advanced biopharma technologies.

Under the MOU, the ITRI and Merck will establish a biopharma R&D and training collaboration program at the institute's innovation campus in Hsinchu County, the ITRI said in a statement.

The program, to be officially launched in May, is aimed at strengthening Taiwan's biopharma production capabilities, expanding its global market share in the industry, and creating new opportunities in precision medicine.

"This project is expected to strengthen Taiwan's biopharma sector by combining the R&D resources from ITRI with key technologies and advanced manufacturing processes from Merck to cultivate high-end professionals in Taiwan," the statement said.

The ITRI-Merck partnership comes at a time when the global market for biopharma products is growing rapidly and will reach an estimated US$278 billion in 2020.

"By combining Taiwan's professional talents and high-tech edge with Merck's advanced technologies in biopharma manufacturing, we can create higher industrial value," said ITRI Executive Vice President C.T. Liu (劉軍廷).

The partnership will help Taiwan produce a new generation of biopharma products that comply with international standards, he said.

Willem Kools, global head of technology management at Merck, lauded the partnership with ITRI and said it will allow Merck to contribute its expertise to help advance the biopharma industry in Taiwan.

As a world leading science and technology company, Merck is active in the healthcare, life sciences and performance materials industries and committed to working closely with customers in enabling new innovation and supporting the biopharma industry to grow, he said.

(By Elizabeth Hsu)

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