Canada earmarks $59M to build production plant for drug research

The Canadian government will shell out 80.5 million Canadian dollars ($59 million) to the Canadian Critical Drug Initiative as part of an effort to boost drug research, commercialization and manufacturing in the Alberta province.

The latest round of funding is slotted to go toward building a 40,000-square-foot manufacturing facility and upgrading a 72,000-square-foot biotechnology business development center in Edmonton, the government said in a March 17 press release.

The push for improved drug research and manufacturing is being led by Applied Pharmaceutical Innovation in partnership with the Li Ka Shing Applied Virology Institute at the University of Alberta.

When completed, the facility will produce small-molecule drugs and will have a fill-finish line that will package and label the drugs for distribution. More than 350 jobs are expected to be created by the project.

The effort is also expected to produce promising new drugs currently under development at the Li Ka Shing institute.

Previously, the Canadian government and the government of Alberta contributed 5.6 million Canadian dollars to Applied Pharmaceutical Innovation and 20 million Canadian dollars to the Li Ka Shing institute.