Lateral flow membranes are a key component in rapid diagnostic test kits for a variety of applications, including COVID testing. The new facility is supported by a $136.7 million contract award from the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), on behalf of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
“Our purpose is to positively impact life and health with science, and today’s ground-breaking exemplifies this commitment by adding physical capacity and expanding our regional network to meet the growing needs of our customers and ensure supply chain security,” says Matthias Heinzel, member of the executive board of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, and CEO Life Science. “This new, state-of-the-art facility will support the surge in demand experienced by our global in-vitro diagnostic manufacturing customers.”
MilliporeSigma is the U.S. and Canada Life Science business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, a leading science and technology company. The new location will provide improved supply security and reduced lead times for global customers, according to the company.
“From COVID-19 rapid testing to cancer therapies, the work MilliporeSigma does helps promote the health and safety of our families and communities while creating good jobs for hardworking Wisconsinites, and I am glad to be celebrating their success today,” says Governor of Wisconsin Tony Evers. “In addition to creating 60 new jobs in Sheboygan, this new facility will provide a major step forward in expanding domestic diagnostic testing as the company’s first lateral flow membrane production facility in the U.S., ensuring our state and country are ready to tackle any public health crisis that comes our way now and into the future.”
The lateral flow membrane production line in Sheboygan complements the global capacity network of the Life Science business sector of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, by adding redundant capabilities to its two production lines in Cork, Ireland, thereby mitigating supply chain risks.
“This new facility will expand much-needed access of critical raw materials to the world’s most sophisticated diagnostic manufacturers. Our best-in-class lateral flow membranes provide the quality and consistency necessary as manufacturers prepare for new regulations for in-vitro diagnostics and medical devices,” says Jean-Charles Wirth, head of Science and Lab Solutions, Life Science business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany.
Hi-Flow Plus Lateral flow membrane enables reproducible results due to its consistent quality and optimized properties. The rapid point-of-care test kits developed by the company’s customers are used for a variety of applications, including infectious disease testing, as well as in pregnancy testing, biomarker detection, drug testing, food safety and animal health.
The Life Science business sector of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, is continuing to invest in products and technologies across its portfolio that are key to manufacturing novel therapies, vaccines, and diagnostics.
All expansions and investments are part of a multi-year program to increase the industrial capacity and capabilities of the Life Science business sector to support the growing global demand for lifesaving medications and to make significant contributions to public health.
Featured image: MilliporeSigma Breaks Ground on Company’s First Lateral Flow Membrane Production Facility in the United States. Photo: MilliporeSigma