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November 23, 2009 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 87, Issue 47

Perstorp, the Swedish specialty chemical maker, is expanding capacity for aliphatic polyisocyanates in China. The company says that when the project is finished in 2012, it will have capacity for 12,000 metric tons of the polyurethane coating raw materials.

CF Industries says a release of anhydrous ammonia during unloading operations at its terminal in Pine Bend, Minn., last week killed one truck driver and sent another to the hospital. A CF Industries Material Safety Data Sheet for anhydrous ammonia warns that the material is corrosive and may be fatal if inhaled.

Cognis has opened a sulfation plant at its site in Ecatepec, Mexico. The specialty chemical maker says the new facility makes sulfated surfactants with crystalline sulfur instead of chlorosulfonic acid, eliminating chlorinated by-products.

Genta has reduced its workforce by 30% following disappointing clinical-trial results for Genasense, an oligonucleotide-based drug, on patients with advanced melanoma. Genta had about 25 employees at the end of 2008.

Eli Lilly & Co. has named Jan M. Lundberg as executive vice president for science and technology, succeeding Steven M. Paul, who will retire on Feb. 28, 2010. Lundberg is currently head of global discovery research at AstraZeneca.

FDA has granted emergency-use authorization for Roche’s assay for 2009 H1N1 influenza virus. The authorization approves the use of Roche’s RealTime ready Influenza A/H1N1 Detection Set in the event of a national public health emergency.

UCB plans to eliminate approximately 200 jobs at its Braine-l’Alleud, Belgium, and Slough, England, sites as part of a reorganization of its bio­pharmaceuticals business. The job cuts are in addition to an ongoing program to cut 2,000 jobs over a three-year period.

Novartis will work with the Sarawak Biodiversity Centre and Malaysian Biotechnology to find potential drug candidates from the forests of Sarawak, Malaysia. The Swiss drug firm will offer internships for SBC microbiologists and natural products chemists at the Novartis Institute for Biomedical Research in Basel, 

Emergent BioSolutions has paid $8.2 million for MdBio Foundation’s biologics manufacturing in Baltimore. The company could create 125 jobs over the next five years at the site. The facility was previously owned by Cambrex.



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