The Slovenia Times

Lek opens the first fully automated analytical laboratory - the largest of its kind within Novartis


The fully automated analytical laboratory with five robotic devices represents an important step in the development of Novartis towards increased digitisation and automation, bringing numerous advantages also in development processes. "We are proud that the large steps forward in this development field are made here, in Slovenia. By automating some of the steps, we can accelerate development processes and reduce cost, which is essential in the generic pharmaceutical industry. Moreover, we are further increasing the compliance with prescribed procedures, reducing the risk of human error and ensuring better safety of our associates," said Bojan Mitrović, Head of Analytical Development at the Development Center Slovenia, adding that this new way of working will allow the employees to better focus on the implementation of processes with higher added value.

The Development Center Slovenia is a leading center for the development of technologically demanding products at Sandoz, the generic part of Novartis, carrying out a quarter of all global Sandoz development projects. Over the last four years, the Development Center Slovenia has developed and launched more than 100 new products, predominantly medicines for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancer, allergy treatment and symptom relief, urology and gastrointestinal disorders, neurological diseases, pain management therapies and anti-infectives. In recent years, the investment in the Development Center Slovenia has increased significantly. From 2015 to date, the number of employees has increased by approximately 20 percent. Today, the development center employs more than 330 people, about one third of whom hold a doctorate in science.

In early September, the Development Center Slovenia opened new development laboratories, which enable also the development of complex solid and sterile dosage forms for cancer treatment. With this new investment in the Development Center, Novartis continues to invest in Slovenia. Since 2003, the company has invested more than EUR 2.3 billion in Slovenia.


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