AstraZeneca Launches Innovative BioHub in Waltham, MA

As Paul Hudson, President, AstraZeneca US and Executive Vice President, North America said earlier this year at the Cleveland Clinic Medical Innovation Summit, “No one company has all the good ideas; it takes multiple partnerships and extensive collaboration to reach our goals.”

In continuing to build on our commitment to collaborate through meaningful partnerships to drive scientific progress forward, AstraZeneca was joined by Massachusetts officials last week to officially launch the Gatehouse Park BioHub in Waltham, MA. The Gatehouse Park BioHub will be one of the largest and most dynamic life-science research biohubs in the region, with more than 700 scientists and research and development (R&D) experts on-site by the end of 2015. Six companies are sharing the facilities, with two more expected to join before the end of the year.

Waltham Mayor Jeannette McCarthy (right) presents Kumar Srinivasan, Head of AstraZeneca R&D Boston (left), with an Official Proclamation from the City of Waltham commending and congratulating AstraZeneca for the launch of the Gatehouse Park BioHub.

Kumar Srinivasan, head of AstraZeneca R&D Boston and VP Scientific Partnering and Alliances, told the audience that gathered for the ribbon cutting ceremony, “At AstraZeneca, we believe that scientific innovation and great collaboration go hand in hand.

“AstraZeneca has been on a transformative journey over the past few years, placing great science at the heart of everything we do in the delivery of breakthrough medicines to patients,” said Kumar. “Our ambition is to improve the lives of 200 million people by 2025. Such a high ambition would not be possible without establishing collaborations of all types with academia and industry. The BioHub provides a fantastic opportunity to explore collaboration even further,” he said.

This new and more open research BioHub contributes to the vibrancy of the life sciences research community in the Boston area and Massachusetts as a whole. The vision of the participating companies is to continue to attract the best talent and to contribute to the synergy of the life sciences research community in Massachusetts. There will be a full range of scientific activity at the BioHub, including oncology drug discovery, antibacterial drug discovery and development, and nanotechnology.

Calling the BioHub a “bold initiative,” and “unique opportunity to cross-pollinate ideas,” Jay Ash, Massachusetts Secretary, Economic Development and Housing, congratulated AstraZeneca for the launch of the BioHub.

“You should be very proud of what you are accomplishing,” Secretary Ash said to the many scientists in attendance. “You are touching lives and giving hope to millions of people.”

Opened in 2000 as an AstraZeneca R&D site dedicated to cutting edge drug discovery, the facility is now a dynamic center where scientists from a variety of companies come together to share ideas and push the boundaries of science, with more buzz and more people than ever before. The six companies already in place are AstraZeneca, Entasis Therapeutics, Qiagen, Wellomics, Ekteino and Persomics.

Massachusetts Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash (left) congratulates Kumar Srinivasan, Head of AstraZeneca R&D Boston (right), at a ceremony to launch AstraZeneca’s Gatehouse Park BioHub.

This site is one of three AstraZeneca R&D sites to be transformed into a BioHub, along with Molndal, Sweden and Alderley Park, UK, where AstraZeneca researchers are working side-by-side with scientists from academic institutions to make strides in scientific discovery. AstraZeneca believes in what science can do and values the partnerships that contribute to the discoveries that ultimately help patients.

Pictured above: Left to right: Peter Blume-Jensen, Head of XTuit Pharmaceuticals; State Representative Joseph Wagner; Waltham Mayor Jeannette McCarthy; State Representative Thomas Stanley; State Representative John Lawn; Massachusetts Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash; Head of AstraZeneca R&D Boston Kumar Srinivasan; State Senator Michael Rodrigues; Massachusetts Life Sciences CEO Robert Coughlin