Singapore's new R&D facility aims to find cures for new-age infectious diseases like Zika

Participants at a seminar on the Zika virus organised by the People’s Association (PA) at ITE College Central, on April 17, 2016.
Participants at a seminar on the Zika virus organised by the People’s Association (PA) at ITE College Central, on April 17, 2016. ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN

SINGAPORE - A new, S$100-million global research and development (R&D) centre, aimed at finding cures for new infectious diseases - such as the Zika virus, will open here.

Invested by Mundipharma, a global player in the pharmaceutical industry, the facility will be the world's first betadine consumer's health hub that will combine R&D, manufacturing and distribution in one, 7300-square metres area along Tuas south.

The facility is in line with government's increase in focus on biomedical research and aims to reach out to pharmaceutical industries in Hong Kong, China and Japan.

 

A key focus of the hub would be on finding new ways to combat new infectious diseases. It aims to discover new treatment options in diverse fields such as pain, oncology, ophthalmology and respiratory disease.

The new plant will also be manufacturing Betadine, a disinfectant with medicated uses ranging from treating minor wounds to preventing the spread of major infectious diseases.

The official groundbreaking ceremony was attended by Minister of State for Trade and Industry Koh Poh Koon.

Dr Koh called it an iconic facility to meet rising healthcare needs in emerging markets.

Mundipharma President of Asia Pacific, Latin America, the Middle East & Africa, Raman Singh, said: "Mundipharma shares the rising sense of responsibility in the pharmaceuticals sector to ensure that the emerging world has equal access to innovation and supply as the more mature Western economies. Singapore is ideally placed to deliver on this goal."

The facility will be operational in January 2018.