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Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. (NYSE:TMO), the world leader in serving science, today announced the official opening of its Molecular Biology Center of Excellence in Vilnius, Lithuania. The new facility will provide molecular, protein and cellular biology products to better serve growing demand from life sciences customers throughout Eastern Europe, and create new opportunities globally. Since acquiring Vilnius-based Fermentas International Inc. in 2010, Thermo Fisher has continued to invest in the region to capitalize on its base of world-class educational institutions and scientific research talent.
The Vilnius site will showcase world-class capabilities for developing and manufacturing products used in a range of life sciences applications. For example, it provides innovative technologies for PCR-based (polymerase chain reaction) testing, nucleic acid sample preparation protein purification and antibodies for ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) testing.
“Our expanded R&D and manufacturing presence in Vilnius strengthens our ability to serve the growing biotechnology community in Eastern Europe, particularly our research customers who rely on innovations in molecular biology to accelerate developments in diagnosing and treating disease,” said Marc N. Casper, president and chief executive officer of Thermo Fisher Scientific. “We now have a solid foundation from which we can continue to increase our depth of capabilities for high-growth life sciences markets in the region, from PCR-based products to our broader biosciences portfolio.”
The 156,000-square-foot Molecular Biology Center of Excellence is currently home to more than 400 research, laboratory and manufacturing personnel, with room for expansion. In addition to its geographically central location, Lithuania is known for its well-established commitment to innovation, highly skilled life sciences workforce and favorable economic environment.
As part of Thermo Fisher’s investment in developing the scientific workforce in Lithuania, the company has collaborated with the University of Vilnius to construct a mobile biology laboratory for high school students that provides hands-on experience with molecular biology and DNA experimentation. Thermo Fisher also supports science education in Lithuania through a series of initiatives, including internships and scholarships that provide students with practical experience and financial support.