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bioMérieux S.A.. (10/10/14). "Press Release: bioMérieux Inaugurates a New Multidisciplinary R&D Center for Infectious Disease Diagnostics". Marcy l’Étoile.

Region Region France
Organisations Organisation bioMérieux S.A. (Euronext: BIM)
  Group Mérieux (Group)
  Organisation 2 bioMérieux R&D Center at La Balme-Les-Grottes
Products Product diagnostics (medical/biological)
  Product 2 microbial genomics
Persons Person Mérieux, Alain (bioMérieux 200702 President + Founder)
  Person 2 Bélingard, Jean-Luc (Mérieux 201101– Président Directeur Général before Ipsen CEO + Pierre Fabre + Roche Diagnostics)

A new bioMérieux R&D center was inaugurated at the company's La Balme-Les-Grottes site (Isère, southeastern France) by Alain Mérieux, Chairman of Institut Mérieux, Jean-Luc Bélingard, Chairman of bioMérieux, and Alexandre Mérieux, Chief Executive Officer of bioMérieux. Geneviève Fioraso, French Secretary of State for Higher Education and Research, attended the ceremony.

The R&D Center at La Balme-Les-Grottes is specialized in the development of new diagnostic solutions in microbiology: high medical value tests for improved patient care and fully automated solutions to reduce time to results and enhance the efficiency of laboratory workflows.

Covering a surface area of 4,500 m² (48,400 ft²), the new building is dedicated to microbiology, bioMérieux's areas of expertise. It brings together complementary disciplines including genomics, proteomics, chemistry, mathematics, engineering, and bioinformatics. Because the work of microbiologists is greatly impacted by the integration of these new technologies, the center aims to leverage the synergies of competencies to improve infectious disease diagnostics.

The building includes 9 laboratories occupying 700 m² (7,535 ft²). Five laboratories house biosafety level 1 and 2 (BSL-1 and -2) facilities for biological activity, while four are devoted to instrument and software development.

Over 215 scientists from a wide variety of backgrounds work in this new R&D center.

Designed by the Tourret & Jonery architectural firm, the building exemplifies an innovative style of architecture with spaces organized to promote creativity, cross-fertilization and the interaction of scientists and research teams. The R&D Center has received HQE (French High Environmental Quality) certification. Designed to respect the environment by limiting energy and water consumption, it also meets thermal, visual and acoustic criteria for the comfort of users.

Serving medical innovation: an investment in France by a world leader in diagnostics

bioMérieux, a world leader in the field of in vitro diagnostics, elected to build this center for innovation at the heart of one of its historical sites in France, strengthening local ties in the Rhone-Alpes region.

This substantial financial investment (€10 million) further enhances the production and R&D site acquired in 1987.* It is one of the Company's strategic centers in microbiology, where bioMérieux is positioned as the global leader for clinical and industrial applications.

This project allows bioMérieux to confirm its potential for innovation in a field presenting major public health challenges, in particular bacterial resistance and healthcare-associated infections, two areas in which the Company has cutting-edge programs.

An R&D Center and emblem of bioMérieux's open-innovation strategy

This site marks a valuable addition to bioMérieux's worldwide innovation organization, which today encompasses 18 R&D centers in France, the United States, China and Brazil. Nearly 1,400 employees around the globe work on bioMérieux's R&D programs, representing a global investment of about 12% of sales.

A pioneer in diagnostics, bioMérieux has adopted an open-innovation strategy based on collaboration with academic research, biotechnology firms and the international hospital community. The Company has initiated numerous collaborative agreements in 12 countries where worldwide scientific and medical innovation are focused.

In line with its strategy, bioMérieux has developed partnerships with the CEA (French Atomic Energy Commission) in new technologies since 1997, and with the Pasteur Institute in infectious diseases since 2009.

To respond more closely to the needs of patients and their physicians, the Company has also created joint research laboratories with the hospital community: Hospices Civils de Lyon in France and the Fudan University Shanghai Cancer Center in China.

Thanks to its multidisciplinary approach and the many partnerships forged with the international scientific community, the R&D Center in La Balme illustrates the spirit of openness that bioMérieux wishes to convey with its innovation strategy.

"I am especially pleased to inaugurate a center devoted to the diagnostics and medicine of tomorrow at a historic site that, since 1987, has greatly contributed to making bioMérieux a key player in the fight against infectious diseases," said Alain Mérieux, founder of bioMérieux. "Continuing to invest in France for research and global public health also brings me great pride," he added.

"In an environment undergoing rapid change," said Jean-Luc Bélingard, Chairman of bioMérieux, "we wished to give our site at La Balme a cutting-edge facility to support the technological revolutions required to address today's challenges in microbiology, such as the threat of antimicrobial resistance, which the world is becoming increasingly aware of."

"The R&D Center at La Balme is a very clear example of the direction in which we plan to drive our R&D activity," said Alexandre Mérieux, Chief Executive Officer of bioMérieux. "Our innovation is built on in-house developments, acquisitions and partnerships. In vitro diagnostics consists in integrating many different fields of expertise, and we want our research approach to remain open: to international collaborations, different disciplines and public, academic and private partnerships," he concluded.

* Acquisition by bioMérieux of API Systems, specialized in bacterial identification systems, based in La Balme Les Grottes (Southeastern France).

Record changed: 2016-03-20


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