Novartis named Overall Winner of 2013 Facility of the Year Award program

The International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering recently crowned Novartis the winner of the 2013 Facility of the Year at the Plenary Session of its 2013 Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. for its novel influenza vaccine technology.

Novartis' United States Flu Cell Culture Facility received the award as Overall Winner of the 2013 Facility of the Year Award for its breakthrough innovative technology for large-scale, rapid manufacturing of seasonal and pandemic influenza vaccines.

Traditional influenza vaccine manufacturing uses chicken eggs, an expensive and time consuming process, to grow the influenza virus. Novartis' technology uses a novel cell culture technology, which shows promise as a strong alternative to traditional influenza vaccine manufacturing because it can process raw materials not threatened by pandemic events with a smaller biosafety level requirement for manufacturing space.

Novartis' proprietary technology allows for faster and more flexible vaccine manufacturing. In the event of a pandemic, the technology can be used to develop a rapid response to the emerging threat.

The technology shows promise for becoming the industry standard for influenza vaccine production. It shows the type of advancements in pharmaceutical and biotechnology manufacturing technology that the ISPE seeks to honor each year. For these reasons, Novartis was the recipient of the annual award.