After Novartis's August 2016 announcement that it would dissolve its cell and gene therapies unit and integrate the unit's activities into its larger organization, in the fourth quarter the pharma disclosed more details of its new drug discovery research strategy. Novartis will merge two early discovery teams to create a new chemical biology and therapeutics (CBT) unit based in Basel, Switzerland, and Cambridge, Massachusetts, and integrated with the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research's global drug discovery teams. The restructuring will add up to 25 new positions in Basel, while closing biologics groups in Shanghai and Schlieren, Switzerland.
Shanghai-based New WuXi Life Science has opened a biomanufacturing facility in Philadelphia for its subsidiary, WuXi AppTec. The Chinese drugmaker plans to manufacture cell therapy products that use viral vectors, such as chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-T cell therapies, as well as expand its viral vector manufacturing.
Advertised biotech and pharmaceutical sector jobs in the job databases tracked by Nature Biotechnology during the fourth quarter of 2016 are shown in Tables 1 and 2. Other downsizings within the life sciences industry are shown in Table 3.