AstraZeneca opens UK Zoladex plant

AstraZeneca has opened a £120m ($148m) cancer treatment manufacturing site in Macclesfield in the UK.

The facility will manufacture the delivery device for Zoladex (goserelin), which is a hormone-based treatment for the symptoms of prostate cancer, breast cancer and endometriosis.

It is based at AstraZeneca’s large Macclesfield campus which has facilities for bulk drug manufacture, formulation and packaging.

AstraZeneca media relations head Neil Burrows told us The plant will produce the formulated Zoladex product and pack it in a syringe” explaining that the device is supplied to the factory.

MHRA advice

Before developing the Zoladex plant AstraZeneca sought advice from UK drug watchdog the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

At the time AstraZeneca told us the MHRA had reviewed the construction plans, conducted manufacturing technology assessments and analysed its validation plan free of charge.

MHRA spokeswoman Sarah-Rose Burke confirmed the agency’s involvment, telling us as part of our Innovation Office we generally meet free of charge for this type of advice in the Inspectorate.”

Long standing investment

AstraZeneca announced its intention to build the plant in 2013, which is around three years before the referendum on June 23 that will see the UK leave the European Union (EU) next year.

Burrows confirmed this, stating: The facility was sanctioned in 2013 and construction began in 2015. It will replace older facilities so as such no new jobs but naturally safeguards existing ones. Brexit vote was not a factor in the decision.”

Read more