AstraZeneca to Build $1.5 Billion Antibody Drug Conjugates Manufacturing Plant in Singapore


The facility, company says, will be its first that covers end-to-end ADC production.

Image Credit: Adobe Stock Images/

Image Credit: Adobe Stock Images/

AstraZeneca will be constructing a $1.5 billion manufacturing facility1 in Singapore for antibody drug conjugates (ADCs)—treatments that provide cancer-killing agents directly to cancer cells through via targeted antibody—which will further boost its current ADC portfolio. Design and construction are expected to begin by the end of this year, with full operations going live by 2029.

The occasion marks AstraZeneca’s first end-to-end ADC production site, which means that the company is personally handling all steps of the manufacturing process. When it comes to ADC production, it features antibody production, synthesis of chemotherapy drug and linker, conjugation of drug-linker to the antibody, and filling of the completed ADC substance.

The greenfield plant also has the full support of the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB).

"We welcome AstraZeneca's decision to establish a manufacturing presence in Singapore for the first time,” said Png Cheong Boon, chairman of the EDB. “ … This greenfield investment is a strong show of confidence in Singapore's biopharmaceutical manufacturing capabilities and talent, strengthens our ecosystem in supporting the development and manufacturing of precision medicines, and creates meaningful jobs and economic opportunities for Singapore. We look forward to a successful partnership with AstraZeneca."

Currently, AstraZeneca’s portfolio of in-house ADCs consists of six wholly-owned ADCs in the clinic. There are also others in preclinical development at the moment.

At a time when establishing sustainability is paramount, the manufacturer plans on working hand-in-hand with Singapore's government—alongside other parties—on way to provide green solutions for the ADC plant. One of the features will be the capability to emit zero carbon from Day 1.

“AstraZeneca has built an industry-leading portfolio of cancer medicines including antibody drug conjugates which have shown enormous potential to replace traditional chemotherapy for patients across many settings. Singapore is one of the world’s most attractive countries for investment given its reputation for excellence in complex manufacturing, and I am excited for AstraZeneca to locate our $1.5 billion ADC manufacturing facility in the country.”

In other news from AstraZeneca, the company’s SUPERNOVA Phase III COVID-19 pre-exposure prophylaxis (prevention) trial returned positive results,2 indicating that sipavibart (formerly AZD3152), an investigational long-acting antibody (LAAB), demonstrated a statistically significant reduction in the incidence of symptomatic COVID‑19, compared to control (tixagevimab/cilgavimab or placebo) in an immunocompromised patient population.

“Immunocompromised patients currently have limited or no options for COVID-19 protection and continue to face a significant burden of disease, despite often being fully vaccinated,” noted Iskra Reic, EVP, vaccines and immune therapies, AstraZeneca. “Sipavibart has the potential to prevent COVID-19 in the immunocompromised and we will now work with regulatory authorities globally to bring sipavibart to these vulnerable patients.”


1. AstraZeneca plans $1.5 billion manufacturing facility for antibody drug conjugates (ADCs) in Singapore. AstraZeneca. May 20, 2024. Accessed May 20, 2024.

2. SUPERNOVA Phase III trial of sipavibart long-acting antibody met primary endpoints in preventing COVID-19 in immunocompromised patient population. AstraZeneca. May 16, 2024. Accessed May 20, 2024.

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