Charles River Laboratories is suspending operations at its preclinical services facility in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts, and laying off 300 researchers, technicians and administrative staff. “This decision comes after a challenging year in which the consolidation of the biopharmaceutical industry, the slowdown in research and development efforts, and financial constraints for biotechnology companies resulted in softness in market demand for our services,” says chief executive James Foster. The firm hopes to reopen the facility when the market improves, he adds. The decision will not affect the firm's animal-supply division.