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Covance continues to invest in precision medicine

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21 Apr 2017

Laboratory Corporation of America® Holdings (LabCorp®) (NYSE: LH), a leading global life sciences company, announced today that its Covance Drug Development (Covance) business will expand its biopharmaceutical chemistry, manufacturing and control (BioPharmCMC) capabilities based in Harrogate, England, into leased space at the National Agri-Food Innovation Campus (NAFIC) in York, England, which is purpose-built for laboratory and scientific services. BioPharmCMC solutions are part of a biologic’s development and manufacturing pathway to determine its safety, quality, identity, strength and purity.

“Covance is a recognized leader in providing global BioPharmCMC solutions, in large part due to its reputation for operational, service and scientific excellence at our Harrogate facility,” said John Ratliff, chief executive officer of Covance. “By investing in the Harrogate BioPharmCMC expansion into nearby York, we continue to strengthen our leadership in this space, providing our clients with the end-to-end expertise and support they need from our highly skilled scientists to improve health and improve lives of patients around the world.”

“This investment by Covance in new laboratories at the National Agri-Food Innovation Campus in York is another boost for the U.K.’s £64bn life sciences and biopharma sectors,” said Greg Hands, U.K. minister of state for trade and investment. “It will add more high-skilled jobs to the approximately 1,000 Covance employees already in Harrogate and strengthen the U.K.’s leadership in the discovery and development of new medicines and treatments for use around the world.”

Opening in late 2017, the laboratory extension in York will allow Covance to continue to serve expanding global demand for large-molecule (biologic) medicines, including antibodies, vaccines, biosimilars and cell-based and gene therapies. These are critical areas of new therapeutic discovery, development and

production in the treatment of many life-threatening and life-changing diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, hepatitis C, Crohn’s disease and, most notably, cancer.

Roger Marsh OBE, Chair of Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership who supported Covance commented:

“I’m delighted to see Covance not only recommit its future to the City Region but make a substantial new investment here. I believe that these new laboratories in York are a testament to the confidence in the City Region and our life sciences sector.

“Our region has a long heritage of fostering innovation within healthcare and life sciences, from playing an instrumental role in the development of the Charnley Hip Replacement  System in the 1960s to Leeds Teaching Hospital performing the UK’s first double hand transplant in 2016. This investment by one of the global leaders in drug development will ensure that our City Region remains at the forefront of the sector and recognises the unique ecosystem which makes it a world leading destination for healthcare and life science businesses.

“We at the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP), were happy to support Covance with this expansion in our region.”

“After more than 20 years of providing high-quality analytical CMC capabilities for biopharmaceutical clients across the globe, we have seen increasing demand from our partners to support their rapidly expanding biologic pipelines and commercial product portfolios,” said Steve Street, vice president and head of Covance Early Development. “The NAFIC space in York is just 27 miles from our current Harrogate location and is ideal for extending our laboratory footprint. This expansion will provide our clients with further access to our services, managed by a team they already know and trust as a top-tier BioPharmCMC partner.”